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The Most Common Under-Diagnosed Illness

Broda O. Barnes, M.D., PhD., one of the world’s foremost authorities on the thyroid gland, estimated that “…as many as 40% of Americans today are affected by some degree of hypothyroidism.”  That was in 1976.  Since then, a national study has shown that iodine levels in Americans have decreased 50% in the last 30 years. Dr. Barnes believed that hypothyroidism, because of its exacerbating effects on other chronic diseases, its widespread under-diagnosis and sub-optimal treatment, is the cause of more suffering and death than any other disease; under-diagnosis because of an inappropriate exclusive reliance on blood tests, which fail to identify many hypothyroid cases; and sub-optimal treatment because of the use of synthetic thyroid hormone, rather than natural desiccated thyroid hormone.

Thyroid deficient patients “…include many of those with a wide variety of complaints such as undue fatigue, chronic headaches, menstrual difficulties, skin problems, repeated infections, and other problems…”  They include many being fed stimulants, tranquilizers, or other medications which serve only to somewhat dampen symptoms without getting at the cause. They include many who are considered neurotics or hypochondriacs.

“For years, medicine has recognized the role of the deficiency in some areas of health and disease and has had clues to its great importance in many other areas.  But the knowledge too often has not been used—and still is not being used—because of the unreliability of laboratory tests that have failed to show the deficiency even when doctors could see its manifestations clearly enough in patients before them. And while laboratory tests have erred and misled both doctors and patients, patients have suffered.”

Patients are often amazed at how most of their chronic symptoms will disappear solely by the administration of natural desiccated thyroid hormone.

Terry Pfau DO, HMD


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