I've posted a few times here, having tested extremely high for thyroid antibodies, which indicated Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. My primary complaint this whole time has been RA-like symptoms, where my metatarsals are in excruciating pain a majority of the time, running on five years now. My fingers have also experienced unexplained and non-symmetrical swelling of the topmost joints, often occurring in a matter of a few days (again, excruciating pain). The same has been happening in my shoulders and knees. I'm 49. Rheumatologist said it didn't present as RA, podiatrist found nothing wrong, endocrinologist told me I did not have hypothyroidism.
My naturopath dXed me with Hashimoto's nearly two years ago. My regimen at first was compounded T3 (5 mcg) then early this year I switched to Nature-Throid, slowly increasing my dosage but still not very high. I thought for sure the joint pain would go away when I reached my optimal dose.
Three weeks ago ago I saw a new MD, who has already moved away. I asked her for an Epstein-Barr test. Lo and behold, I have reactivated Epstein-Barr, and I suspect I've had it for quite some time. For nearly a month I have been on the autoimmune paleo diet, never cheating once. My plan is to stay on this for six months and then get retested for Epstein-Barr. I take the equivalent of a small fortune in immune boosters and natural antivirals (monolaurin and reishi mushroom), essentially the treatment protocol for chronic fatigue syndrome. I've never suffered from debilitating fatigue, fortunately, and don't know why.
Epstein-Barr has been shown to cause other autoimmune disorders such as MS and lupus. About 90%+ of the adult population carries this virus. There may be a genetic predisposition to a reactivation of Epstein-Barr, aka HHV4. One thing it manages to do is escape the gut, which is where it initially resides, and hide in the B cells (immune cells) of organs such as the thyroid. Through a process called molecular mimcry, the proteins created by these infected B cells are so similar in structure to the body's own it causes the body's immune system to attack the body, specifically the affected organ or body part. Hence the unexplained elevated thyroid antibodies (1000+ for me). And on top of that, it is attracted to synovial fluid, so my immune system's natural killer (NK) cells are destroying my joints.
I stopped taking any thyroid meds at all about a week ago, having tested high (5) in free T3. My joints are starting to become pain-free. It looks like I may have found my root cause, finally, so the plan is to maintain at least a paleo diet after I send the Epstein-Barr virus back into remission.
Just wanted to let you all know. You guys are terrific.