Souper Star: Dana Trentini – Hypothyroid Mom
MEET DANA | Hypothyroid Mom
Who knew that small butterfly-shaped thyroid gland at the base of my neck would affect my life so completely? I lost my unborn baby needlessly to hypothyroidism. After 4 years of intense research and a quest to find the top thyroid experts, I am in the best health ever and went on to have my second son at age 40. Now it’s time to share all that I have learned.
I created Hypothyroid Mom in memory of my lost baby so that my child will look down on me and know I am sorry for not being a better advocate for us. Now I will save other babies in my child’s memory.
What inspired you to start your blog?
I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism following the birth of my first son in 2006. I trusted my doctors and followed their thyroid drug protocol; never once thinking they might not know everything there was to know about hypothyroidism. I trusted them as the experts especially when I became pregnant again in late 2008.
In my first trimester, I was overcome by a sick, tired, weak feeling. I recall vividly the night I felt so ill and told my husband, “I am worried that something is wrong with the baby.” My body was whispering a warning to me, but I trusted my doctors when they responded that it was normal to be tired in the first trimester and not to worry. Somehow this “sick, tired, weak” feeling didn’t seem normal, yet I trusted my doctors.
I would later learn that my Ivy League medical school trained and top awarded NYC doctors did not know enough about hypothyroidism, especially the dangers of hypothyroidism in pregnancy. Under their care my TSH soared far above the safe range for pregnancy endangering the life of my fetus, and I miscarried.
As the medical staff prepared me for my D&C, the warrior mom came out of me. I vowed to research everything there was to know about hypothyroidism and to warn women everywhere about the dangers. I fulfilled my vow when I launched my blog Hypothyroid Mom.
What have you found most surprising along your journey in relation to healthcare?
I am most surprised by the lack of research and attention given to many women’s health related conditions. Thyroid disease is a glaring example of this. The Thyroid Federation International estimates there are up to 300 million worldwide with thyroid disease, yet over HALF are unaware of their condition. The majority of thyroid sufferers are women with hypothyroidism.
It is madness that there over 150 million thyroid sufferers worldwide right now suffering yet unaware their thyroid is to blame. It is a statistic that blows my mind.
Despite the dangers of thyroid disease in pregnancy, for example, there is currently NO routine thyroid testing in pregnancy. I am enraged at a medical system that fails to protect our children.
Do you have any advice or offerings for women who need to advocate for themselves?
If you are diagnosed with a health condition, no matter what it is, research all you can about it and be an advocate for yourself. I will live forever with the regret that while I was pregnant the signs of my worsening hypothyroidism were so clear to me yet I followed my doctor’s advice that my thyroid was fine and that they must all be pregnancy related. I lost my baby needlessly all because I trusted my doctor’s knew best. No more.
Now I encourage every woman I meet to be an advocate for themselves. Knowledge is power.
Doctors don’t always know best. Even if it means seeing 10 different doctors until you find one who gets it and helps you, then do that.
What do you wish every woman knew about their health?
Our body whispers warnings when something is not right. Listen…listen carefully. If your instincts tell you something is not right, then fight to find a doctor who will listen to you and help you find out what is wrong. Listen to your body.
What are your Top 3 Thyroid Resources Online?
The first book I ever read about thyroid disease was the book by New York Times bestseller and internationally-known thyroid advocate Mary Shomon, “Living Well With Hypothyroidism: What Your Doctor Doesn’t Tell You…That You Need To Know.” This book literally changed my life. Mary writes the About.com Thyroid Disease site which is a must site to follow. I also follow Mary on Twitter and on Facebook.
Gena Lee Nolin from the TV shows “Baywatch” and “Price is Right” is an incredible advocate for thyroid sufferers. I love her new book along with Mary Shomon called “Beautiful Inside and Out: Conquering Thyroid Disease with a Healthy, Happy, “Thyroid Sexy” Life. I love following Gena on Facebook. She also has a new website.
ThyroidChange is a non-profit organization that began as a grass-roots, patient effort to assemble thyroid patients, organizations, groups, blog and physicians into a global community with a unified voice for change in thyroid health care. I signed their petition “Patients with Thyroid Dysfunction Demand Better Care” and I encourage all thyroid patients to do the same
ABOUT OUR ‘SOUPER STAR’ SERIES
One of the incredible benefits of starting a blog and building community is the women we, at Hormone Soup, are able to connect with around the world. We are constantly inspired by the stories and resources discovered and shared. In honour of these women and their stories, we want to take the time each month to introduce you to those that we feel have Souper Star quality.