Thyroid Disease Test – Thyroid Disease Screening Tests | Life Line Screening

Thyroid Disease Screening

Thyroid disease occurs when the thyroid gland, part of the endocrine system, malfunctions either because it produces too much (hyperthyroidism) or too little (hypothyroidism) thyroid hormone.
If left untreated, health problems can occur ranging from issues with metabolism, cardiac and nervous system function, sleep disturbances, changes in mood, increased irritability, constipation, fatigue, and muscle weakness.

Schedule this Screening
*Screening availability may be limited by location.

Who is this screening for?

Thyroid disease screening is important for a variety of groups. Women have a 2 to 10 times greater chance of developing a thyroid disorder than men. Adults who are over 60 as well as women who have been pregnant or have delivered a baby within the last six months are also at higher risk. Other at-risk groups include those with a family history of thyroid disease, those who have been treated for a thyroid problem, those who have had neck surgery or radiation, as well as anyone with a vitamin B12 deficiency known as pernicious anemia, type 1 diabetes, or primary adrenal insufficiency.

Frequency

Annually

Ages

Women, 60+
It's estimated that more than 20 million Americans have some form of thyroid disease. If you notice any of these signs or symptoms, then it's time for a thyroid disease test. The earlier you detect the problem, the faster you and your doctor can determine if treatment is necessary.

Risk Factors for Thyroid Disease

  • Women have a 2 to 10 times greater risk for a thyroid disorder
  • Adults over 60 years of age
  • Women who have been pregnant or have delivered a baby within the last six months
  • Those with a family history of thyroid disease
  • Those who have been treated for a thyroid problem
  • Those who have had neck surgery or radiation
  • Anyone with pernicious anemia (a vitamin B12 deficiency)
  • Those with type 1 diabetes
  • Those with primary adrenal insufficiency

Thyroid Disease Screening Details

A simple finger-stick blood test is used to measure thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels, the key indicator for how well the thyroid gland is functioning. No fasting is required.

Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH), produced by the pituitary gland in the brain, plays a key role in regulating thyroid hormone production. An abnormal TSH level can cause the thyroid gland to malfunction and lead to a variety of health issues.

About Thyroid Disease

Your thyroid may be small, but it has a dramatic effect on a wide variety of your bodily functions. It is the largest endocrine gland in your body, and it produces two hormones: T3 and T4. They control the rate at which your body burns energy and responds to stress hormones.

There are two ways your thyroid can malfunction, and they are known as hyperthyroidism (when too much thyroid hormone is produced in the body) and hypothyroidism (when not enough thyroid hormone is produced). Here are just some of the signs that there's something wrong with your thyroid.

You're always tired

Chronic fatigue could be a sign of either hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism. If you have hypothyroidism, you feel tired even after a full night's sleep because there isn't enough thyroid hormone in your bloodstream, so your muscles aren't getting a signal to get going in the morning. If you have hyperthyroidism, you probably can't sleep well at night, causing you to feel tired in the morning.

Your mood has changed

Feeling unusually depressed or sad might mean that you have hypothyroidism. The lack of thyroid hormone has an impact on your brain's production of serotonin, the "feel good" hormone in the brain. If you feel anxious, jittery, or wired, you might have hyperthyroidism because your thyroid is making too much of its hormone. Your brain is flooded with messages, your metabolism speeds up, and your whole body goes into overdrive. If you notice either of these changes in your mood, you should get a thyroid disease test.

You're always too hot/too cold

If you feel cold all the time or that you have the chills, you probably have hypothyroidism. Your system slows down because of an under-active thyroid, and that means less energy is being burned by your cells. Less energy means less heat. If you are always warm or sweating profusely, you probably have hyperthyroidism and should have a thyroid disease screening test performed as soon as possible. That's because your cells are in overdrive, producing too much heat.

Warning Signs

Some symptoms of hyperthyroidism include:
  • Nervousness or irritability
  • Heat intolerance
  • Weight loss
  • Frequent bowel movements
  • Fatigue or muscle weakness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Goiter
  • Mood swings
  • Rapid and irregular heartbeat
  • Hand tremors

Some symptoms of hypothyroidism include:
  • Weight gain
  • Sleepiness
  • Dry skin/brittle fingernails
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Memory loss
  • Decrease in cognitive function


Schedule this Screening
*Screening availability may be limited by location.

Thyroid Disease Screening FAQ

  • What causes thyroid disease?
    There are several underlying causes for a thyroid disorder. Blood tests, along with radiologic screenings, are the most commonly used methods for diagnosing a thyroid condition. Most thyroid problems, if properly diagnosed and managed under the supervision of your physician, are easily treatable through medication, radioiodine treatment, and if needed, surgery.
*Most of the time, screening results are normal, providing the customer with peace of mind. However, in some cases, such as the real life stories here, potential health issues are identified enabling the person to do something about it before it is too late.