Almost every person I speak to starts the conversation with: “My doctor is useless and I’m so frustrated.”
The common reasons to this comment are:
- they don’t listen to what you have to say
- they dismiss your symptoms, give you anti-depressants, and ask us to eat less and exercise more
- they refuse to test you for more than TSH and T4 (thyroid hormones)
- they run blood tests for estrogen, progesterone, cortisol and testosterone and tell you that “it all looks normal.” They dismiss urine or saliva tests for these hormones even though they know nothing about them
- they just want you to just take thyroid medication or synthetic HRT
- they put you on birth control pills to “regulate your hormones.
Sounds familiar, yes?
Integrative doctor listings and directories
There is good news. There are doctors who can help. I want to offer you this hope and empower you with this knowledge.
Here are some good go-to resources that will help you find a better physician. And yes, many of them do take insurance.
Take a look at these resources that many of my clients found very helpful:
1. American College for Advancement in Medicine: http://acam.site-ym.com/search/custom.asp?id=1758
2. American Association of Naturopathic Physicians: http://www.naturopathic.org/AF_MemberDirectory.asp?version=1
3. Institute for Functional Medicine: http://www.functionalmedicine.org/practitioner_search.aspx?id=117#results
4. Living Proof Institute certified practitioners: https://thelivingproofinstitute.com/find-a-doctor/
5. Paleo Physicians Network: http://paleophysiciansnetwork.com/
6. American Board of Integrative Holistic Medicine, Physician Locator: http://www.abihm.org/search-doctors
7. ThyroidChange list (US, Canada and Australia): http://www.thyroidchange.org/list-of-doctors.html
There is one more great trick I want to offer you.
If you are still in no luck to find a doctor, go to your local compounding pharmacy and ask them for a list of doctors who are their customers. We find that often times, doctors who are willing to work with compounded (it means custom-made for you) thyroid replacement therapy are more open minded and progressive. There is hope.
If you do your homework, you also stand a much better chance to find the right support system.
Qualifying questions to ask
If you a have a thyroid condition, ask the office manager if the doctor works with Armour or can order a compounded thyroid pill. This will be an indicator on how flexible they are. Ask if they would test for Free T3 and the TPO and anti-TG antibodies.
Ask if the doctor/practitioner is functional in training and approach. What labs does she/he work with? Ask if they can order Cyrex, GI Map, OAT (Organic Acid Test) and DUTCH for hormone testing – to name a few. I find that the most progressive practitioners work with these labs.
Order the tests yourself
You can order thyroid tests yourself by going to Direct Labs.
If you want to get your steroid hormones tested (like cortisol, progesterone, estrogen, DHEA and testosterone), you can also DIY it by going to Canary Club. It’s important to test the steroid hormones through saliva or urine and not blood as the latter is highly inaccurate.
Another option for hormone testing:
You can order the tests from that site yourself. It is important to find a skilled physician to interpret those results.
Magdalena recommends the following physicians:
Dr. Shawn Tassone
He’s got great online reviews: https://www.zocdoc.com/doctor/shawn-tassone-md-65682
(He’s Austin-based but he works remotely, via Skype and phone).
Dr. Shiroko Sokitch
(She also works remotely).