Read the Latest Articles
  • Northeast Wisconsin
  • September 2018
Written by 

Metabolic depression due to thyroid hormone dysfunction Part II

This is Part II of “Metabolic depression due to thyroid hormone dysfunction.” To read Part I, please see the August 2018 print issue of Nature’s Pathways Magazine or visit

If the thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) is at an ideal level, the patient may still not feel well. They might not be converting T4 to T3. We can get a measurement of Free T3 — the ultimate active thyroid hormone that binds to those DNA receptors and renews our body. In those cases, if the mixture of T3 and T4 in a desiccated thyroid extract isn’t getting the patient where they need to be, we add some pure T3 as a separate prescription. This often makes all the difference for the patient. Even though their other MD claimed that “your TSH is just fine on your dose of Synthroid,” they really needed some T3.

The plot thickens

It turns out that when a person is under a lot of stress (psychosocial, chronic infection, autoimmunity, metabolic syndrome, etc.) the body has a mechanism to force the person to slow down and conserve energy. Most of us won’t slow down until our systems shut down completely and we are diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome, for example.

This mechanism involves T4 being converted to a separate form of T3 called reverse T3. This hormone not only doesn’t turn on the genes which active T3 does, it actually binds the T3 receptor and blocks real T3 from having any effect! The medical profession has named this phenomenon “euthyroid sick syndrome.” They admit that the patient has all the symptoms of thyroid dysfunction, but there is nothing wrong with their thyroid biology. In these cases, one must treat the associated medical condition and often use even high doses of pure T3 at multiple times per day in order to “unlock” the T3 receptors.

Treatment of thyroid system dysfunction is by no means as simple as measuring TSH, giving Synthroid, getting the TSH between 0.4-4.5 and sending the patient out as properly treated.

There are many reasons for the array of thyroid dysfunctions: thyroid failure, problems converting T4 to T3, hyper production of reverse T3, deficiency of minerals needed in thyroid hormone production, autoimmune disorders, notably adrenal gland issues.

A properly trained physician will measure all necessary parameters of your thyroid function: TSH, free T4, free T3, total T3 and reverse T3, and can then embark on bringing all of these to desirable levels. It is through coordinating the patients’ signs and symptoms with the lab measurements that physicians are able to bring this most important component of your metabolic health into balance. 

Dr. Robert S. Waters

Robert S. Waters, MD, received his bachelor’s degree in biology cum laude from the University of Illinois. He went on to do graduate research in Genetics there and then enrolled in medical studies. He has studied a diversity of alternative and innovative therapies both in the United States and Europe. These have included orthomolecular medicine, acupuncture, homeopathy, neural therapy, prolotherapy, endocrinology and trace element biology. Waters Center for Biological Medicine is located at 320 Race St, Wisconsin Dells. For more information, visit or call 800-200-7178.

Subscribe Today
Community Partners Directory
Find a Complimentary Copy
Community Calendar