28 Sep VLOG 3: Why Thyroid Health = Brain Health
Understanding the Whole Thyroid Picture
In this Vlog episode, Dr. Brock discusses what labs are beneficial in reaching that comprehensive diagnosis, rather than looking at singular, one-off markers, and why this is especially critical for understanding the impact of things like thyroid function on the brain.
TSH It’s common for just the TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) to be measured, because often an increased TSH can signal hypothyroidism while a decreased TSH can signal hyperthyroidism.
Total T4 & T3 TSH levels alone may not accurately reflect the true condition. That’s why Dr. Brock looks at not only the TSH, but also total T4 and T3 levels. (T4 is the first thing that comes out of the Thyroid, and then gets converted into T3)
Free T4 & T3 These are more biologically active than Total T4 and Total T3 levels, which is why Dr. Brock also takes these into consideration, comparing the Total and Free levels in the context of their own normative ranges.
Thyroid-Binding Globulin This is what the thyroid hormone is bound to. When that hormone comes off, or is no longer bound, it become Free. So if thyroid-binding globulin levels are high, the Total levels may be higher than the Free levels, indicating that the biologically active free agent is actually low (which would not necessarily be apparent by just looking at the TSH level).
Antibodies Studies suggest that 60% or more of thyroid dysfunction cases are related to autoimmunity (ex. Grave’s Disease or Hashimoto’s Disease). For example, the presence of TPO antibodies and Thyroglobulin antibodies often indicates Hashimoto’s Disease.
The presence, or lack thereof, of these antibodies plus all the other markers discussed above, point to what aspect of thyroid function is causing the Total and Free levels to be out of symmetry to one another. Once the cause of the imbalance is identified, it will point to what is causing symptoms – an autoimmune condition, the brain not functioning the right way, a conversion issue between T4 and T3, something altering the binding globulin, something altering the receptor sites, etc.
Why is Thyroid Function Important in a Brain Clinic?
The thyroid has so much to do with metabolism, neurological function, receptor populations, hormones, neurotransmitters, and much more. This means that good brain health goes hand-in-hand with good thyroid health.
This is just one example of how Cerebrum’s approach is unique. We believe in treating the whole individual as a unique person, including diving deep into potential underlying issues that are often overlooked or dismissed. Check out Cerebrum’s basic lab work versus typical lab work.
If you are struggling with lingering symptoms after a head injury and have been told “it’s just something you have to manage or learn to live with” there IS another option. Contact Cerebrum today to see how we can help you.