I'm 42 with a TSH of 4.5 and I still got pregnant!

by Deanna Windle

Amelia is an incredible woman! We are blessed by being childhood friends and still in contact. When she completed Acupuncture school and began treating patients I was excited for her because she was good and successful at this profession. She would come to my neck of the woods (San Diego then) and go to seminars and classes and treat me and my husband while she was there.

I later found a local acupuncturist who was also awesome, and my husband and I had great results. All that is to say I whole heartedly believe and have experienced first hand the awesome results from acupuncture.

I have always consulted Amelia on health issues and asked for her valued advice. Her recent encouragement to me was about my thyroid condition, and switching to the natural drug Armour and going out of my network to find a doctor who would work with me.

My thyroid history began when I became hypothyroid during my first pregnancy in 2001, and was faced with taking a pill daily for the rest of my life. Not taking it was not an option because my baby and I both needed it, and I researched like crazy all of my options etc. I asked to see an Endocrinologist because I wanted to know why I had it etc. and do more testing.

Well, it turned out also that I tested positive for Hashimoto's Disease, but of course they don't really address this. In my limited medical network the only drug options were levothyroxine and Synthroid. I started on levothyroxine, and depending on what the pharmacy had, that was what I got, one or the other randomly but mostly levo. This is important because I have talked with many friends since who say one or the other works for them, but not both.

Last December 2008, I was checking my tsh and the nurse responded your levels are normal, which I asked what are they and she said the TSH was 4.5. That is high for me, and I thought okay I will deal with this when I get back to the states. I knew the normal level to get pregnant would be .5-1 TSH. I therefore didn't worry about getting pregnant and thought it was impossible now at this time. I checked my prescription and noted, "Oh, I have synthyroid instead of levothyroxine", but I wasn't really concerned, and later I realized that it was probably part of the problem with my TSH. But, low and behold in January I found out I was pregnant and my TSH currently rose above 11. No one seemed to care about upping my dose immediately etc., and I was not impressed with the in network endocrinologist who only prescribed Synthroid and didn't feel comfortable with Armour. So, I was ready to find a doctor who would prescribe me Armour and really look at the big picture.

Amelia came to visit and she told me I should go to Mary Shomen's doctor in DC, and we looked up Dr. Adrianne Clamp and I finally went and saw her. I felt relieved that I finally did it and felt more in control. The doctor said she couldn't believe I got pregnant, and told me to congratulate my husband because he must have super sperm for me to get pregnant at that high TSH level (good humoured). My TSH is where it should be now, my pregnancy has gone well (the best one and easiest yet) and I feel pretty good finally. Be your own advocate and don't be afraid to pay out of pocket for a better/different doctor, it might be the best thing you ever do for yourself!

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