Why don’t people get thyroid hormone checked regularly? Elizabeth Tracey reports


People who are taking thyroid hormone don’t get their levels checked very often, and since many of them are taking too much, they’re at risk for dementia, a recent Johns Hopkins study found. Jennifer Mammen, an endocrinologist and one of the study’s authors, says no one has examined why.

Mammen: We don't know whether it's because people aren't getting checked, whether it's because people are not feeling well and people are blaming the thyroid and being given extra thyroid hormone pharmacologically trying to fix symptoms that are being ascribed to the thyroid inappropriately, whether from switching between manufacturers we don't really know exactly what the issue is but it is definitely something that requires at least a little bit of attention.  :30

Mammen says knowing which other medicines someone may be on and when they’re taking them are also important for managing thyroid hormone correctly, as is taking a consistent manufacturer of the hormone, since variations do occur. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.