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What Is Thyroid Screening?

Medical experts recommend thyroid screening for anyone over 35 years old.
Physicians may perform a thyroid screening to check the thyroid for potential problems.
Weight gain may be a symptom of hypothyroidism.
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  • Written By: A. Leverkuhn
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 16 August 2014
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Thyroid screening is a process for checking the thyroid gland for any potential problems. The thyroid screening test is generally a blood test that measures thyroid activity. This kind of medical screening helps to catch health problems early and prevent more involved treatments later.

The thyroid is a throat gland that helps in the body’s process of metabolism. There are two kinds of “thyroid disease” that doctors generally check for. The first is hypothyroidism, where the thyroid is underperforming. The second is hyperthyroidism, where the gland is overperforming.

According to the medical community, different kinds of thyroid disease can have a negative impact on the cardiovascular system. Some kinds of thyroid problems can increase the risks of some cancers. Doctors know the importance of monitoring the thyroid with thyroid screening tests to be sure that it is operating in the right range.

Medical experts are now recommending thyroid screening for anyone over 35 years old. These kinds of tests may be done every five years according to regular guidelines to see if the thyroid is working properly. Thyroid tests called T3 and T4 are part of a full “thyroid panel” that can be part of a greater “metabolic panel” test that also measures cholesterol, blood sugar levels, or other elements related to metabolic processes.

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After thyroid screening, doctors will frequently recommend various medications in order to bring the thyroid activity back into medically acceptable levels of operation. The treatment of thyroid disease is similar in some ways to the treatment of hypertension or high blood pressure, or elevated cholesterol levels. In all cases, doctors use specific dosages of medications to affect a measurable level of an activity or condition in the body.

Doctors are starting to inform patients more about how thyroid screening fits into preventative care. Lots of experts who look at reports on the nation’s health system believe that getting good medical prevention and screening to communities will ultimately lower the overall costs of health care by helping patients avoid expensive “end-stage” procedures. It’s likely that hospitals and medical providers will be proactive in promoting thyroid screening to patients in light of relatively new science that shows the importance of observing thyroid conditions in most adults.

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anon186240
Post 1

Well it's a start. The blood tests started in the 1970s. Before, docs treated only symptoms. ME/CFS/Fibro were new diseases after -- a coincidence?

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