How is Hashimoto's disease treated?
Hashimoto's disease has no cure. However, your doctor can treat low thyroid function to minimize any long-term effects.
Treatment for Hashimoto's disease is synthetic thyroid hormone taken daily in pill form. This medicine will regulate hormone levels and shift your metabolism back to normal. It will also lower your low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and may help reverse weight gain. The thyroid medicine can replace the hormones your thyroid gland usually makes. How long you need to take the medicine will depend on the results of your blood tests. For most people, taking thyroid hormone medicine causes no problems.
Taking your thyroid medicine and having regular blood tests to see how your thyroid gland is working can help prevent symptoms. Some medicines, supplements and foods may affect your body's ability to absorb the synthetic thyroid hormone. Tell your doctor if you eat large amounts of soy products, are on a high-fiber diet or take other medicines such as iron supplements, calcium supplements, cholestyramine or aluminum hydroxide (found in some antacids).
Thyroiditis: Differential Diagnosis and Management by J Slatosky, D.O., B Shipton, D.O., and H Wahba, M.D. (American Family Physician February 15, 2000, http://www.aafp.org/afp/20000215/1047.html)
Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff