A newly published study in the Archives of Internal Medicine finds more than 13-million Americans may be unaware of and undiagnosed for their thyroid conditions,
This poses a problem, because having a thyroid condition can affect both your long term, and short term health explained Dr. Lisa Merritt, M.D., of the Multicultural Health Institute, (MHI) in Sarasota.
Dr. Merritt said, "Hypothyroidism is one of the most common endocrinological disorders. Even more common than diabetes, and it's associated with increased weight gain, intolerance to cold, coarse hair, thin skin changes."
Symptoms can be vague said Dr. Merritt.
"It can sometimes take months or years to diagnose hypothyroidism."
Hyperthyroidism also known as Graves disease, is when the thyroid gland produces an iodine hormone explained Dr. Merritt.
Dr. Merritt said. "When you have hyperthyroidism that means that the thyroid gland is hyperactive, or over active, and that's a situation where you will have someone that loses weight, you may have palpitations in their heart, they may sweat, they may feel just very very tired because their body is working so hard and burning energy all the time."
A healthy thyroid gland is important said Dr. Merritt, and for her it's personal.
"I'm a survivor that has lived with Graves disease for many years, and I am so grateful I actually was diagnosed with by a cardiologist because my initial symptoms had to do with my heart."
Dr. Merritt added, "Graves disease, or hyperthyroid can cause the heart to race, have palpitations and irregular beats, and if unchecked it can go on to significant arrhythmia's that can cause great problems with the heart over time."