Hypothyroidism is difficult to detect in its early stages because it may be attributed to any number of reasons for weight gain or fatigue. But as it progresses, forgetfulness, a sluggish mind, depression and hoarseness can all serve as red flags. Hypothyroidism prevents the thyroid gland from producing enough of certain hormones, which are needed in order to balance the chemical reactions in the body. This can be caused by medication, auto-immune disease, treatments for hyperthyroidism or radiation therapy. Women over the age of 60 are especially susceptible.
Because hypothyroidism is more common among older women, your practice may choose to screen for the disorder during routine annual physicals. Some practices also recommend that pregnant women are tested. If left untreated, hypothyroidism can cause a number of health problems, such as obesity, joint pain, infertility and heart disease.
If patients complain of symptoms or you notice an increase in any of them, a hypothyroidism test should be administered. You can purchase the Accutest THS Rapid Test for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone through Medical Device Depot at $200 for a box of 20 tests. This simple and essential screening test earns in $23.69 in reimbursement to help mitigate its overall cost. The patient will know within 10 minutes if his or her TSH is elevated, and with 98.5% sensitivity and 96.9% specificity, this is a reliable and accurate test that you and the patient can trust.