Pam–It won’t hurt to read Dr. Stoll’s information about Graves’; just know that he is in error about what happens to the hypothalamus, pituitary and Thyroid Stimulating Hormone in Graves (my TSH was .002 on diagnosis, almost non-existent). His whole argument is based on that wrong information (check it out with any doctor, or with your lab results!), plus the unproven contention that Graves’ is caused by stress. Stress MAY be a factor in Graves, and perhaps there is information in his website that is helpful. Regardless, Dr. Stoll doesn’t know what Graves’ IS, so do you want to take his advice on how to treat it?
I agree that it would be much better to get to the cause of the disease. Doctors all over the world have been trying to do that, for years! I hope you continue to learn as much as you can, and consider all possibilities. My personal decision to take the atomic cocktail was based on a desire to go on with my life in good physical health, as soon as possible. I wasn’t willing to go through years of trying things that might not work. For those who are, more power to you. It might work!
According to the information I have (Dr. Gordon, Loyola University), a small percentage of Graves’ cases will go into permanent remission spontaneously. The majority of cases of Graves continue to get worse until something has to be done, and other cases are characterized by periods of exacerbation and remission. Eventually, untreated, the thyroid will wear out and you’ll become hypothyroid, if you don’t die of the hyperthyroidism first. In the meantime, the thyrotoxic state contributes to heart disease and osteoporosis, among other things. I understand your reluctance to take a permanent treatment, Pam. The thing I thought hardest about before taking the I-131 was what would happen if our social order collapsed and thyroid replacement became unattainable. Since I’m now suffering the horrible symptoms of hypothyroidism, I can tell you first hand, the quality of life would be nil.
Your treatment choice is very personal; only you have to live with the consequences of your decisions. This message board exists to share information and support. Hopefully we confront erroneous information. Let us know what you choose and how it’s going for you!