Case History: Hyperthyroidism

A 32-year-old woman presented with a 3-month history of chronic vaginal and nipple candidal infection. She is 8 months postpartum and breastfeeding her daughter, who has also had recurrent thrush for the past 3 months. She reports nearly constant anxiety, heart palpations several times a day, excessive thirst and hunger, irritability, fatigue, and hot flashes. She reports that it is difficult for her to relax and she is bothered by insomnia. She reports a normal first pregnancy and birth and no menstrual cycle since the pregnancy. She experiences frequent colds and sinus infections and is chronically congested in her nasal passages, with postnasal drip, and fullness in her left ear. She complains of frequent gas and bloating and reports two or three bowel movements daily, often unformed.

She used Nystatin oral suspension several times for the yeast, as prescribed by her primary care physician, and was taking a prenatal vitamin and EPA/DHA 500 mg two times a day. Her blood pressure was 124/78; pulse 92, respirations 20 per minute. Her physician observed that the woman had extreme nervousness about the well-being of the baby, how she is caring for the baby, and breastfeeding issues.

Laboratory Values

TSH: <0.01 (0.4-5.0), T4: 18.8 (4.5-12), FT I: 7.3 (1.4-3.7), tri-iodothyronine uptake: 39 (25-36), fT4: 5.1, (8-1.8) Total T3: 553 (80-180), and TSH-R antibodies positive.

She was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism (Graves’ disease).

Treatment Protocol

Tincture to be taken internally:

Bugleweed (Lycopus spp.) 20 mL
Club moss (Lithospermum offtcinale) 20 mL
Lemon balm (Melissa offtcinalis) 20 mL
Motherwort (Leonurus cardiaca) 10 mL
Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) 10 mL
Valerian (Valeriana offtcinalis) 10 mL
Eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus) 10 mL

Total: 100 mL

Dose: 5 mL TID with meals

Also: Astragalus capsules 500 mg twice daily

Dietary recommendations were to increase dietary goitrogens, including broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kohlrabi, sweet potatoes, almonds, pine nuts, millet, peaches, soy, and peanuts.

She was encouraged to practice daily yoga for half an hour, along with aerobic exercise four to five times a week.

Take a 20-minute warm bath at night with essential oils of lemon balm and lavender (5 to 7 drops each per bath).

The patient was evaluated with labs 2 month later showing TSH: <0.01, T3: 38, T4: 18.3, FTI: 5.9, Total T3: 433, and fT4: 3.4. She reports her average pulse as being 84 and her signs and symptoms are lessening.

Evaluation after 7 months of treatment shows thyroid-stimulating hormone <0.01, T3: 110, fT4: 0.72, and FTI: 2.9.