“Are Endocrinologists just DETERMINED to be stupid?” ask some thyroid patients.

(Though this was originally written in 2011, it has been updated to the present day and time. Enjoy!)


Will it ever end?

A very troubling article

On March 21st, 2011, from the Endocrine Today website, comes the article Hypothyroidism only partially responsible for decreased quality of life in Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. And this article has so many troubling comments and wording that it has made some thyroid patients question whether their Endocrinologist can really help then.

For example, the article notes that there seems to be a “higher symptom load and the lower quality-of-life scores in the group of patients with increased anti-TPO levels”, which can include “Chronic fatigue, dry hair, dysphagia, irritability and nervousness”.

Yet, the article states, these patients have

    • “normal thyroid function”
    • are “euthyroid”
    • have an “ideal biochemical response to thyroid hormone replacement therapy.”.

Are you kidding me, say many thyroid patients???  Euthyroid technically means “the state of having normal thyroid gland function.” Yet, chronic fatigue, dry hair, dysphagia (difficulty swallowing), irritability and nervousness are far from normal, besides being classic hypothyroid or Hashimotos symptoms, as well as having potential adrenal issues from having poorly treated hypothyroidism!

And of course, most informed thyroid patients know that ” euthyroid” and “normal” and “ideal” in the mind of poorly-trained doctors refer to an ink spot on a piece of paper called the TSH lab result and NOT cellular receipt and/or use of thyroid hormones. The TSH is a pituitary hormone, not a thyroid hormone. The TSH lab test has failed patients for decades, just as has T4-only like Synthroid, levothyroxine, Eltroxine, etc!

Also mentioned is a particular Austrian study involving 426 women aged 19 years or older who were undergoing surgery for benign thyroid disease. When patients come on thyroid groups and report Endocrinologists who want to remove their thyroids simply because they have the treatable Hashimotos disease, you have to wonder why 426 women were having surgery for “benign thyroid disease”…

But in spite of all the above, there is hope!

Hashimoto’s patients have become wise and informed. To read all the ways patients have learned to adequately treat Hashimotos, go here.

To find out if you now have an adrenal problem, go here. This is important to know because it can be problematic in raising NDT if you have low cortisol, or high cortisol. Thus, the need to treat it first.

To find a good doctor to work with, and/or teach while you are working with, go here.


Do you look back and wonder about the fact that your thyroid was taken out?  Let us hear your story by commenting on this post. What has been your experience with an Endocrinologist? Tell us about it.


** Have you Liked the STTM Facebook page? It provides daily information and inspiration just for thyroid patients!

** Check out recommended patients groups on the internet.

** Stop the Thyroid Madness is available in TWO different books! http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/comparing-the-sttm-books/

26 Responses to ““Are Endocrinologists just DETERMINED to be stupid?” ask some thyroid patients.”

  1. Linda Larson

    I have Graves Disease, as a result I agreed to the treatment of Radiation cocktail. Now its about wondering if I will away’s be able to get Armour, and at what price? They’ve got us by the throat! When in 2002 I was told the treatment would be an inexpensive little pill once a day! Who knew this little pill would be such a wonder and worry. What will we do if we can’t get this or any like it now we have no thyroid! I found synthyroid to be a host of many, many symptoms, just like problems I’ve had with any synthetic product. I have HUGE allergy problems! Yet the drug companies as well most Dr.’s insist, INSIST& STRONGLY I use it! I had a lot of trouble finding someone who would order Armour for me. I finally convinced my Endo that I needed it. My Internist was not happy!!! Why is this?? Is it money? Thank you for your research and comfort with the “Stop the Thyroid Madness”. Sincerely, Linda

  2. Alana

    One of the most disturbing things I find about this is that in many cases, psychiatry (and doctors who are trying to work out what is causing their patients symptoms of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia etc etc etc) relies heavily on endocrinology in determining if their patient have a thyroid problem – which is quite clearly and scientifically proven to be linked to causing symptoms of mental illness – and if so, how to treat it! :S :S :S In other words – endocrinology is often responsible for keeping mentally ill patients mentally ill which is very wrong.

  3. Peter

    It’s amazing how this disease will perpetuate into the
    future because of decades and decades of big Pharma marketing, unfortunately this part will never end! Peter

  4. Christine

    I’ve been considering that men who want to make alot of money are similar to mosquitoes…they don’t want what they rely on to make that money / their food source to evolve or move about. If what they rely on to make that money is part of a “disadvantaged” group seen as below them – women, minorities, the poor, animals – so much the better since in their view those peoples’ realities are easier to dismiss, drive over, fabricate, with the simple intention of keeping everything in place so they can feed.

  5. T. Adler

    Me: So your saying it’s just a coincidence that I’ve had thyroid symptoms for 25 years and now my tsh is high?
    Doctor: Yes!

  6. karen

    janie do you think its safe to drink milk and should we take more thyroid supplements or anything,from the radiation from japan, thank you

    From Janie: As far as the milk and any radiation: experts say it’s safe, but “experts” have been saying Synthroid works, so I choose to be on iodine anyway in a small amount.

  7. ZuZu

    Still have my thyroid, but even the word “Endocrinologist” makes me ill.

    Endos, and the medical profession generally, seem to think hypothyroidism is a moral failing, a lack of self-discipline, rather than a serious illness that needs to be treated properly.

    Prejudice against women, especially older women (We become invisible as we age. Trust me on this.), brings out a patronizing attitude toward us. Add Fibromyalgia to the mix, and the circus is in town.

    If exercise and diet worked, I wouldn’t be hypothyroid. It’s really that simple.

    I’ve been to two endos in my life, and I could write a book just about those visits. And both should lose their licenses.

    No doubt they are good with diabetes. But dangerous with thyroid. Ignorance can be deadly.

    It nearly was with me – T4 only, when I cannot convert to T3 on my own, over five years, not only made my symptoms and TSH worse, it led to morbid thoughts, then thoughts of suicide. I stopped taking Synthroid, and begged my doctor to put me on Nature-Throid. In a gift from the universe, I got his PA, whose open mind was refreshing. She wrote me a prescription for Nature-Throid.

    Problem solved. For a while. Now I believe I need supplemental T3, but I am afraid that will never happen. My doctor was so angry about the PA’s actions, he won’t let me see her, only him. He is so good and progressive about everything else. The thyroid is his only sticking point.

    So I take selenium, and pray for warm weather to return. And seeing the PA again!

    Sorry for the rant. I took the survey.

    Thank you for all you do.

  8. Johann Mitchell

    As a result of talking to some endocrinologists, I’m convinced that the word “endocrinologist” is a synonym for “moron.”

    I met one who refused to prescribe anything for me unless it had already been shown to cause internal bleeding, anaphalactic shock or something equally bad. He insisted that those “were just coincidences.”

  9. Susan Elizabeth

    Yes, they are STUPID. Most people who get medical degrees are not very bright and are only able to parrot whatever they are taught (by drug salesmen). My sister, an MD, has a high IQ and I have finally realized how very STUPID she is, unable to think rationally and clearly. She actually made a medical diagnosis of me from a letter I wrote for the California Nurses Association, and, of course, she was wildly incorrect. Fortunately, she did not work as a doctor for long; in addition to having no empathy, she is STUPID and apparently unable to add two and two.

    Oh where, oh where, are the Broda Barneses of this world? Turning in their graves, I suspect.

  10. Rose

    My endo prescribes NDT. I still have symptoms. She agrees and agrees that something more is going on that just thyroid issues. But that’s the end of the conversation. They’re either lazy or stupid or both.

  11. Teresa Rose

    I have had Hypothyroidism for 13 years. My last blood tests came back with a TSH of 150. the usual limit is 3.5 to 10. My doctor won’t refer me to the Endocrinology dept until may when she hopes that my TSH level will be lower. My doctor will not prescribe T3 and she says that the endo won’t either. I am on 200mcg of Levothyroxine and am exhausted, I am currently in bed as I could not even get dressed this morning, and when I phoned the doctors this morning (twice) there were no appointments until Thursday. I am worried that my utter exhaustion may be due to adrenal fatigue but am not sure what to do. I just want to go to sleep and not wake up 🙁

    (From Janie: Teresa, join NTH Europe and the UK Group. Both listed here: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/talk-to-others They all can help you.)

  12. Abbey

    I started having hypothyroid symptoms as a little girl, but was only recently diagnosed as having hypothyroid by a naturopath. I’ve been feeling awful since I was about ten but the the last six years have been especially bad. I’ve experienced unexplained weight gain, fatigue, swelling, joint pain, digestion issues, have tested “inconclusive” for mono four times, temp falls around 96F, yeast and sinus infections monthly, and etc. After I had a miscarriage in late 2009, my symptoms flew out of control and I was a zombie, a walking dead not living and not dying, just existing by day to sleep at night. I couldn’t remember words or dates or comprehend what people told me or read a book or even watch TV without falling asleep. Despite proper dieting and exercise I gained 70lbs in seven months. Despite 9-14 hours of sleep per night i was exhausted. My blood work was “within the normal range” for everything checked. My symptoms were so bad I almost took an extended sick leave from my job. In the last five years, I have been referred to an endocrinologist four times:

    Endo One: (age 22) You feel like this because you are depressed. Recommends an antidepressant.
    Endo Two: (age 24) The reason you feel so awful is because you are getting older. It’s a natural part of aging (let me reiterate that I was 24 at this time).
    Endo Three: (age 26) Refused to see me.
    Endo Four: (age 27; on desiccated thyroid for seven months and feeling much better) There was no reason you should have been feeling bad and I have no explanation to the millions of things wrong with you. The thyroid has nothing to do with you feeling better. But you have to get off the thyroid before YOU DIE A HORRIBLE, DESICCATED THYROID RELATED DEATH!!!

    2010 was a dead year for me. I went up three sizes in pants and, yes, I admit that I did become depressed. I lived in a dense fog for months and felt like my life was over. In Aug. 2010 I began desiccated thyroid and I have – literally – never. felt. better. Am I still fatigued? Yes. Did it fix everything? No. But, if I had listened to the endocrinologists, I can’t imagine where I would be today. Would I still be a walking dead? Would I still be swollen and in debilitating pain? How can doctors expect people to live like that without giving answers or even caring about how the patient feels? Living was death and thyroid has given me life again.

    (From Janie: if things are yet all fixed, go here: http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/things-we-have-learned or Chapter 3 in the STTM book with details)

  13. Janet

    Here’s my “stupid endo” story:
    I referred myself to an endo after my primary said he wouldn’t treat a TSH of 4.83. On the first visit, the endo listened carefully to my list of symptoms, nodding knowingly as I described each one. I was ecstatic when she wrote a prescription that day, even before the new labs came back.
    The problem? Synthroid is her pet, the only drug she ever prescribes for hypothyroidism. But it overmedicated me in the lowest possible therapeutic dose, rendering me both clinically and symptomatically hyperthyroid. Because the dose couldn’t be lowered any further, she told me to stop taking it and just remain untreated until I would be able to “tolerate” it. Then she had the audacity to say that my symptoms – which she had based her diagnosis on – weren’t “from low thyroid anyway.”

  14. Gillian Broughton

    Not only are Endos stupid they are also lazy , finding a good endo in UK is like searching for Rocking Horse DUNG !!!!

  15. Brenda

    For 10 years I consulted with many endochrinologists to figure out how to handle a huge golf ball sized goiter that was protruding from my neck. My thyroid bloodwork was in the normal range so they all took the position of recommending surgery, radioactive iodine, or doing no treatment. Not a single endochrinologist discussed iodine deficiency. One endochrinologist declined my request for a urinary iodine loading test. Being a young woman with little knowledge I opted to remove half the thyroid (although they wanted to totally remove it). During those years I tolerated rude comments, false statements, and degrading conversation from many endochrinologists. They have a superior atttitude and lack respect for women. I decided that I will NEVER see another endochrinologist. For the last several years I have been happily self treating with Iodine, Armour/Erfa, supplements, and exercise. After so many years of damage, my bloodwork has no relationship to my health & feeling of wellbeing. I treat myself based on symptoms. I have used iodine to successfully shrink the remaining half thyroid and a large breast tumor. Currently I am enjoying Dr Brownstein’s book, “Iodine – Why you need it; Why you can’t live without it”. The endochrinology field is nothing more than a cartel of criminals … yes, criminals.

  16. Kate

    I have hashi’s. When armour reformulated and I could not get it I had to go back to T4 only. I then moved and could NOT find a doc who would prescribe dessicated meds! They looked at me like I had two heads! I went into doc in box (yrgent care center) for vertigo and suspected ear infection…thyroid symptom! and the PA asked me who handled my thyroid I yelled NO ON TO MY SATISFACTION…looking crazy haha. I almost cried when she said she would prescribe Armour! Well they gave me too low of a dose and my antibodies are off the charts so they referrred me to an endo. I am scared shitless that she is going to take me off armour or lower my dose even further! My new endo said science does not know why dessicated thyroid seems to make patients feel better….seriously? I can tell you!! THEN she said antibodies were nothing to be concerned about…another seriously? I am waiting until 1 today to find out what is my sentence from dun dun dunnnn the labs…and of course she did not run antibodies but sure did the TSH. I am disgusted. I have every symptom in the book. Depending on what I hear today I may be driving four hours to go see my old doctor who knows me! Don’t give up!!

  17. Eve

    I’ve been on ERFA for 10 years. About 8 years ago I got diabetes and while in hospital was assigned an endocrinologist. He wanted me to go off dessicated thyroid completely. When I refused, he “fired” me! Just recently I was told to go off thyroid meds completely as my “TSH is severely depressed”. It’s not just endocrinologists though… my regular doctor told my ex husband to take me to the psychiatric ward in the hospital rather than see me when I was having panic attacks. Another general practitioner refused to take me on as a patient because my problems were “too complex”. And I overheard a third telling his receptionist that he didn’t want to see me that day because he was too busy – I should go to the emergency room. I was at a walk-in clinic!

  18. Kate

    Crying! Well I got my results and as I expected I will need to drive FOUR HOURS TO A GREAT DOCTOR WHO UNDERSTANDS HASHIMOTOS THYROIDITIS!
    Ok if you read above I finally got armour and was overjoyed! However my dose was entirely too low…given 180 should have been 210 based on previous armour use and goiter, hashis etc…antibopdies off the charts. My new endo just called after TWO WEEKS and has LOWERED it to 120… a FULL GRAIN LOWER…when I need a minimum half grain higher to shut off the antibodies destroying my thyroid! I don’t believe I have ever felt worse than in these past few months. I feel cold at night, very low temp every freaking hypo syndrom in the book including a late period with zero chance of being pregnant cause I have ZERO libido. So I askedthe nurse…so I am hyperthyroid according to the LABS only? Correct? I said I have NEVER been hyper always HYPO..she said YOU are now…I said according to the labs only correct?

  19. Kit

    “Endomyopia” – a peculiar trend in endocrinolgy where cognitive dissonance compels doctor to claim any improvement on NDT is placebo/imaginary, while any supposed health risks will probably be life-threatening.

    1973- TSH test introduced. Hypothyroidism diagnoses plummets.
    1970’s – “Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Diagnoses begin to soar.

    Just fancy that!

  20. Angel

    I agree with everyone`s comments- life sure sucks.
    i don`t mind self treating, as i am in control, but my son
    needs help now1 he has autism and so as his brother.
    i had untreated hashi`s when pregnant.my son is in a home
    and can not look after himself.

  21. Dr. Paul Yanick

    They do not see wholeness and our connection with nature nor the role of the afferent-efferent physiology in the intracrine production of hormones and the paracrine or autocrine reactions at the cell membrane receptor sites. For example, on Thyroid Metabolism & Insulin Resistance with Emphasis on neurological component of thyroid disorders. The following newsletter discusses the dominant, yet under-discussed role of the vagus-liver-celiac involvement in the metabolism of thyroid hormones and the nationwide epidemic of obesity. Strengthening and nourishing the afferent vagus can help to restore immune control over viral replication and prolonged inflammation…factors that underlie hypometabolism. Hypometabolism always involves the deiodinating enzyme, 5′ – deiodinase, which causes less T4 to be converted to T3. As the afferent vagus restores digestion and detoxification, xenoestrogens that inhibit 5′ – deiodinase can be detoxified and nutrients deficiencies such as selenocysteine can be naturally fermented in the gut to detoxify heavy payloads of xenoestrogens. Read more: http://www.aaqm.org/Downloads/doc-qmuAUG08.pdf
    On the afferent-efferent physiology the following article published in the Townsend Letter in my medical column Quantum Medicine Update talks about the critical role of the peripheral nervous system and its afferent-efferent physiology in restoring metabolism: http://www.townsendletter.com/May2009/quantum0509.htm
    From newsletter:
    Alterations reciprocal T3 and rT3 relationships are found in liver disease (Recenti Prog Med 1990;81:351-55), kidney disease (Ren Fail 1997; 19:129-136 Chung Kuo Chung Hsi I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih 1993;13:155-7) severe or systemic injury (Clin Endocrinol 1982;16:565) and toxic metal exposures (Comp Biochem Physiol C Pharmacol Toxicol Endocrinol 1999;123:39-44; J Appl Toxicol 1998;18:317-20; Toxicology 1997; 124:203-209; Occup Environ Med 1994;51:536-40). If we only use HRT via thyroid hormones to correct a deficiency in T3, a lot of scientific evidence tips the scales in the “false” direction with regard to this idea as the core issue of impaired T4 to T3 conversion is never addressed. The liver plays a dominant role in the metabolism of thyroid hormones via deiodination, conjugation, deamination, and decarboxylation enzymatic reactions. Correction of altered metabolism can significantly impact the quantity of thyroid hormone metabolites influencing cell function (Altern Med Rev 2000;5(4):306-33).The activity of hepatic antioxidant enzyme systems and lipid peroxidation influences the peripheral metabolism of thyroid hormones (Br J Clin Pharmacol 1983;15:71-76. Thyroid 1997;7:655-668. Chem Biol Interact 1994;92:293-303). Both Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) or “euthyroid sick syndrome” (ESS) are correlated with “low T3 syndrome,” and poor hepatic detoxification ability (secondary to vagal efferent deficiency states) and have been classified within the medical literature. Keep in mind that altered thyroid hormone patterns can be a result of hepatic and renal pathology, as well as catabolic states such as those induced subsequent to severe injury, illness, or trauma. Lifestyle factors, such as stress, caloric restriction, and exercise also influence the metabolism of thyroid hormones. Toxic metals, xenoestrogens and drugs inhibit 5′-deiodinase. Beta blockers, antiarrhythmic, antianginal, and corticosteroid drugs are 5′-deiodinase inhibitors (J Clin Endocrinol Metab 1975;41:911; Thyroid 1991;1:273-77; Acta Endocrinol (Copenh) 1983;103:254-258; J Clin Invest 1975;55:218; Clin Invest 1976;58:255).

  22. Pam Holton

    Graves Disease took my thyroid, Synthroid took my sanity and health. After 7 weeks on dessicated ERFA Thyroid I feel better than I have in 7 years! For all of those 7 years my Endo (one currently on another Doctor list) refused to prescribe dessicated thryoid, said my tests were in the normal range, discounted that my health was anything but normal as I literally dragged myself in to see him and insisted that dessicated thryoid was unregulated and dangerous. HE WAS WRONG. ERFA Thyroid has given me a new lease on life and I am so thankful to finally find a doctor willing to listen and prescribe it.

  23. Elizabeth

    My sister has Down’s syndrome and is currently hospitalized for psychosis. Her doctor had no clue about TSH, T3 or T4 levels. So they called in an endo. He claims the levels are all normal. I looked at the results myself. The TSH is high, the T4 is ok, but just on the border, and the T3 is insanely low. How can he say it’s normal? I understand that psychosis is a symptom of hypothyroidism. This is a very difficult situation, as she is still hospitalized. My mother won’t leave her side, and won’t take my advice since I’m not a doctor. I have T3, and I just want to go over there and pop it in her mouth. I wish I knew a doctor who was on board with this stuff. I feel like the doctors act defensive when you bring up this information, like it’s an attack on their years of schooling and their ego. Help!

  24. Julia

    Endo’s in the U.S are no smarter. My TSH is 3.66 and continues to increase year over year. Doc says the range is .358-3.74. Reports I’m reading says that the range it too large, should be .3-3.0. I’ve had hypothyroid symptoms for years. I have 3 other siblings with Hashimoto’s. Endo doc told me my TSH is normal and gave no explanation for the high, above normal range of Anti Thyroglobulin Antibodies, mine was 43 and the normal range is <40. I asked how could one explain all my symptoms? She suggested I could be peri-menopausal. Yup another doc drinking big pharma kook aid. Told me to get retested in 6 months and if out of range would prescribe Synthroid. That's ok doc I won't take Synthroid as its synthetic T4 only, no T3. I bet if she tested T3 it would be abnormal but they don't do that because they refuse to write prescriptions for anything other than Synthroid. If T3 was abnormal they have no big pharma drug to prescribe for that. Sis's are on Nature thyroid due to reactions from Synthroid (probably the gluten in the Synthroid). If you have not found the research about gluten search for it. Do not eat gluten if you have Hashimoto's, although in Europe you probably don't have the poisons in your food that we have here in the U.S. Our FDA and Big Pharma are in bed together. Makes for chronic disease and illnesses that require drugs to treat symptoms and not cause. Diet and supplementation is best. That processed food will kill you and so will the drugs. Good luck everyone. Educate yourselves. It's the only way you can ensure proper treatment.

  25. Bethany

    I seem to be the only one commenting who is legitimately sick.

    It started a year ago when I was pregnant with my second child. Blood pressure with an upper number in the 180’s, CHRONIC FATIGUE, BLACKOUTS, bone and joint pain, excessive nausea, anxiety, depression… good grief where the hell did this come from?!

    My TSH is 4.59! My Hashimoto’s 426! I was told by my endochronologist to ‘deal with it’. I was initially misdiagnosed as only having an iron deficiency. Then a Vitamin D deficiency. I know exactly why I am sick. I went from an entirely organic diet and stopped! My body went into attack mode. I have been back on my entirely organic and raw diet now for a few months. I do not feel any better. I hate myself for having been so stupid. My husband kept bringing home soda and candy and baked goods and I hate him for it. Tempting garbage that is the processed food industry. To top it off, I moved into a home with brand new carpet which smells horrendous and I hardly go outside anymore because of how sick I am. Hence, AMERICA!!!!!!!!!

    WE are to blame for this epidemic. I have seriously considered killing myself because I am that sick and I do not know how much more of this I can take. My body is attacking itself and I feel so sick.


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