Thyroid UK
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Hi im new to site, have had thyroid issue since 2008and just taken levothyroxine and annual bloodtests.I was recommended to your site so thought id message to say hi and ask a question, today I was filling in form to reapply for medical exemption card and dr had filled in form for me and in box for condition he wrote Hypoparathyroidism ive always beed told ive got underactive thyroid or hypothyroidism I am now somewhat confused by different names.Whats the difference? And should meds be any different?

3 Replies

They are two very different issues and you would be taking different medication (like calcium I believe) if your parathyroids are not working properly. Maybe he made a mistake on the form. Why not just call and ask?


Your doctor has made a mistake, easily done as GPs are so busy. He should have put 'myxoedema' which is another name for 'hypothyroidism', nowadays usually reserved for severe forms. (For some reason when the law was passed they used the term 'myxoedema' rather than 'hypothyroidism', so now it should be on the form). He will need to correct the form for you or write out another one.

The parathyroid glands are nothing to do with the thyroid, their main function is to control the level of calcium in our blood. They were named 'parathyroid' because they are located adjacent to the thyroid. The meds are completely different. I assume you are taking levothyroxine which means you have hypothyroidism.



Happily, as regards getting a Medex, both hypoparathyroidism and myxoedema (that is, hypothyroidism which needs thyroid hormone replacement) qualify! (There is nothing much else to be happy about. :-( )

However, the disorders are very different. Your description makes it sound as if you have hypothyroidism. The parathyroids are tiny glands which... Hey - have a look here:

On the left side of the picture, hover your mouse over the words under "Anatomy Explorer" - you can see the small parathyroids. Parathyroids produce parathyroid hormone which controls calcium levels.



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