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Using laser therapy to restore thyroid function - temporary success

Hello. I am a 48-year-old male, and I have autoimmune hypothyroidism. I was diagnosed in 2009.


Last year, I read the following article from 2017:

https://thyroidpharmacist.com/articles/lasers-thyroid-tissue-regeneration/

This article describes how "low-level laser therapy" or "cold-laser therapy" can be used on a thyroid gland that has been damaged by Hashimoto's. Supposedly, the laser therapy will regenerate the thyroid gland, restore the ability of the thyroid gland to make thyroid hormone, and significantly reduce (or even eliminate entirely) a person's need for Synthroid.


This year, I found a chiropractor who performs laser therapy on the thyroid.

This chiropractor performed laser therapy on my thyroid from late August 2022 to early October 2022. This therapy was performed during 12 sessions. The chiropractor used an Erchonia EVRL cold laser on my thyroid. She used the laser's "thyroid" setting.

In 10 of the 12 sessions, she also used a laser on my adrenal glands. In 9 of the 12 sessions, she used her fingers to tap on my thoracic vertebrae to stimulate the thyroid.


Prior to the start of the thyroid laser treatments, I took Synthroid (125 mcg) every day for 7 months.

The first thyroid laser treatment occurred on 8/25/22. The chiropractor did NOT use the laser on my adrenal glands or tap on my thoracic vertebrae on 8/25/22. The next day (8/26/22), I took my regular dose of Synthroid (125 mcg). For the rest of the day, I felt chest pains and/or sweat from time to time. These were signs of hyperthyroidism. I concluded that the laser treatment had caused my thyroid to produce more thyroid hormone for my body, and that the amount of thyroid hormone being produced by my thyroid + the thyroid hormone from the Synthroid 125 pill was too much.

On 8/27/22, I did not take Synthroid at all.

From 8/28/22 to 8/30/22, I took Synthroid (125 mcg) every day.

In the afternoon of 8/30/22, the chiropractor gave me the second laser treatment on my thyroid. Once again, the chiropractor did NOT use a laser on my adrenal glands or tap on my thoracic vertebrae.

In the evening of 8/30/22 and in the early morning of 8/31/22, I felt chest pains and headaches (signs of hyperthyroidism). So, on 8/31/22, I did not take Synthroid.

As time went on, and as I experienced more laser treatments on my thyroid, as well as laser treatments on my adrenal glands and the tapping on my thoracic vertebrae, I changed my dose of Synthroid based on how I felt. I used a pill cutter to cut the 125-mcg pill into two 62.5-mcg pills and to cut the 62.5-mcg pill into two 31.25-mcg pills.


The last laser treatment occurred on 10/6/22. Also on 10/6/22, the chiropractor lasered my adrenal glands and tapped on my thoracic vertebrae.

On 10/7/22, I took 31.25 mcg of Synthroid.

From 10/8/22 to 10/30/22, I took 62.5 mcg of Synthroid per day.



On 10/13/22, before I took the Synthroid, I had a blood draw for the following blood tests: TSH, Free T4, Free T3, thyroid antibodies.

These blood tests had the following results:

TPO antibody < 8 (normal range = 0 - 34), down from 10 on 3/14/22. Thyroglobulin antibody < 1.0 (normal range < 1.0), staying the same as 3/3/21 level. So, my thyroid was not being attacked by my immune system.

FT4 = 1.04 (normal range = 0.82 - 1.77), down from 1.40 on 8/9/22. So, the FT4 had decreased but was still in the normal range.

TSH = 1.670 (normal range = 0.450 - 4.500), up from 0.062 on 8/9/22. The TSH had increased but was in the normal range. (Izabella Wentz, the author of the above-mentioned 2017 article, has written that too much TSH can overwhelm the thyroid and can harm the thyroid. I believe (and hope) that my TSH level of 1.670 was not too much.)

FT3 = 2.6 (normal range = 2.0 - 4.4), up from 2.5 on 8/9/22. The FT3 had increased but was still much lower than my usual numbers (3.0 or higher). I thought that there was an issue with FT4-to-FT3 conversion. I thought that I had too much cortisol (due to the fact that I was under a lot of stress).



On 10/22/22, I took 62.5 mcg of Synthroid. During the rest of the day, I experienced occasional chest pains. These pains were a sign of hyperthyroidism.


On 10/23/22, I woke up feeling pain in my lower back. This was a sign of hypothyroidism. I proceeded to take 62.5 mcg of Synthroid.


From 10/24/22 to 10/30/22, I experienced hypothyroidism to one extent or another. In the early morning of 10/31/22, I felt hypothyroid pains all over my body. So, at about 12 PM, I took 93.75 mcg of Synthroid. For the rest of the day, I felt much less hypothyroid than I had felt during the preceding week.

I have taken 93.75 mcg of Synthroid per day since 10/31/22.


It seems to me 1) that the lasering of my thyroid *initially* caused the thyroid to produce additional thyroid hormone, 2) that my thyroid eventually stopped producing additional thyroid hormone, and 3) that the success that the chiropractor and I had in "fixing" my thyroid has been only temporary.


So, what is going on here?

Why did the lasering initially cause my thyroid gland to produce additional thyroid hormone? Was there some thyroid hormone stuck inside my thyroid gland for years, waiting to be "liberated" by a laser?

Why did my thyroid *stop* producing additional thyroid hormone? Did the laser treatments "fix" my thyroid only temporarily? Or, is it the case that my thyroid gland works just fine now and that my body has a shortage of iodine?


Thank you.

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Avatar universal
Izabella Wentz, who wrote the 2017 article about laser therapy that I mention in my first post, wrote in her book ("Hashimoto's Protocol", page 256) that, to determine whether thyroid regeneration has occurred, thyroid medications should be reduced *gradually* (specifically, 25 mcg every 6 weeks).

In other words, the process is as follows: 1) the patient gradually reduces the intake of Synthroid, 2) the thyroid receives a request to make more thyroid hormone (that is, receives more TSH), and 3) if the thyroid has regenerated or healed, the thyroid does, indeed, make more thyroid hormone.

In the clinical trials that I mentioned, the thyroid medicine was withdrawn, not gradually, but rather "cold turkey". But I believe that gradual withdrawal is the smarter way to go.

So, I *was* going to gradually reduce my Synthroid from 93.75 mcg per day.


However, I have been taking 93.75 mcg per day since 10/31/22, and I am still feeling symptoms of hypothyroidism. In the last day or two, I have felt weakness in my hands.

Izabella Wentz has also written that, the longer a person has had Hashimoto's and the more damage the thyroid has sustained, the more difficult the regeneration of the thyroid will be. And, in my case, the Hashimoto's could have done damage to my thyroid for over a decade.

So, the bottom line is that it is very possible that my thyroid is too damaged for the LLLT to work.

The clinical trials that I mentioned do not state how old these patients were, their genders, or how long they had been battling Hashimoto's. Perhaps all of that information would be helpful.
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1 Comments
I just want to add to what I said above.

I have a meeting with my thyroid doctor very soon. I will discuss this laser stuff with her, of course.

Also, I will ask for a thyroid ultrasound. I have not had one since 2019.

Furthermore, I will ask for an iodine-level test and perhaps a cortisol-level test.

Avatar universal
Bird, I understand why you would not want to take thyroid med for life.  I read your two links plus others.  I have some observations about LLLT, starting with the limited amount of studies,  small sample sizes, and short period of study.   Also, there was some evaluation of test results, but there was no mention of evaluation for symptoms during the studies.   I can envision some short term benefit due to stimulating the gland, but none of the studies showed elimination of the Hashis' antibodies.   So that tells me the attack on the gland will continue.  You yourself have not been able to stop taking thyroid med and it appears you need to get your dose back to a level that relieves hypo symptoms.   So what is your plan from here?
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4 Comments
"none of the studies showed elimination of the Hashis' antibodies.   So that tells me the attack on the gland will continue."

I'm a little confused about something.

Back in March 2021,  my TPO-antibody level was < 9 (normal range = 0 - 34), and my thyroglobulin-antibody level was < 1.0 (normal range = 0.0 - 0.9).

At that time, my thyroid doctor told me that, because my antibody levels were within normal range, my thyroid was NOT under attack.

Was my thyroid doctor incorrect? Is my thyroid under attack even if the thyroid-antibody level is within normal range?

I wold not expect those levels of TPO ab and TG ab to be a concern.  What were those levels at the time of being diagnosed as Hashi's?
"What were those levels at the time of being diagnosed as Hashi's?"


In July 2009, I received a tetanus vaccine. Immediately after I got that vaccine, all hell broke loose in my body.

I went to see a doctor about that hell breaking loose. He ran some blood tests (including TSH), and my TSH was 147 (normal range = 0.350 - 5.500). I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism.

Later in July 2009, shortly after that TSH test, I had more tests. Here are the results of those tests:

TPO antibodies  =  3.0 (normal range < 20)

TSH  =  122 (normal range = 0.350 - 5.500)

FT4 =  0.16 (normal range = 0.71 - 1.81)


The follow-up tests showed that the TPO antibodies were at a very low level. So, by themselves, these blood tests probably did not indicate autoimmune hypothyroidism.

However, I found the following article:

https://www.ei-resource.org/articles/gulf-war-syndrome-articles/how-vaccinations-work/


From that article, and from the fact that all hell had broken loose right after the tetanus vaccine, I came to the conclusion that the vaccine had resulted in the creation of some antibodies that had gone on to attack my thyroid.


In May 2010 (after almost 1 year of thyroid medicine), I had the following blood-test results:

Thyroglobulin antibodies  < 20 (normal range < 20)

TPO antibodies = 67 (normal range <35)


The TPO-antibody level was higher than normal. That led my then-endo to declare that my hypothyroidism was autoimmune.


So now your antibodies are down.  This has been shown to occur when taking thyroid med.   In your current situation it seems that you need to get your med dosage high enough to get your FT4 and FT3 around mid-range, or as necessary to relieve hypo symptoms.  How do you see it?
Avatar universal
First thing is that LLLT is not approved by the FDA.   Also, as I have found out, LLLT will not cause regeneration of destroyed thyroid cells.  LLLT may cause damaged cells to enlarge and perhaps produce a bit more hormone.  In your case I suspect that the almost immediate hyper symptoms you felt may have been caused by the laser causing the damaged tissue to leak hormone.  Apparently this was only a short term effect.  I would definitely not assume that you need iodine.  

Since Hashi's is caused by the autoimmune system producing antibodies to attack and eventually destroy the gland, how is LLLT supposed to stop that?  

I expect that you got onto the LLLT trial because you were not happy with your results from taking 125 mcg of T4.   That is a very common occurrence, due to inadequate dosage, or inadequate conversion of T4 to T3, or both.   A good thyroid doctor will diagnose and treat a hypothyroid patient clinically do those thing.  by testing and adjusting FT4 and FT3 as needed to relieve hypo symptoms, without being influenced by resultant TSH levels.   In addition it is important that Vitamin D is at least 50, B12 n the upper part of its range, and ferritin above 100.   If I were you I would be looking for a doctor that will do those things.  

If you want to confirm what I suggest, have a look at our latest paper, for which I am a co-author.

https://thyroiduk.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/Patients-Guide-Final-V5.pdf
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2 Comments
"Since Hashi's is caused by the autoimmune system producing antibodies to attack and eventually destroy the gland, how is LLLT supposed to stop that?"

Here are clinical trials in which LLLT *did* restore thyroid function to patients suffering from autoimmune hypothyroidism.

However, I think I read somewhere that all of the patients in the above trials were women. I am a man. So, that could be the difference.


"I expect that you got onto the LLLT trial because you were not happy with your results from taking 125 mcg of T4."

Actually, I was hoping to cure myself of autoimmune hypothyroidism and to wean myself off thyroid medicine forever.

Oops. Here are the links to the clinical trials that I mentioned above.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20662037/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22718472/

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