Q: Update on Wilson's Thyroid Syndrome
On your site I came across a mention of Wilson's thyroid syndrome
In your answer you said that you had some skeptism of this site mainly for the
fact that you had to purchase a manual for $32.00. There is a link to download
the manual for free along with a link to download the patient's book for free.
However, my question is have you looked into this matter anymore. I have tried
to do research on this myself and am not sure if I find it any more credible
than anything else I have read and being that none of the "Certified" doctors
that are listed are in my area I am wondering what your feeling are on this
I would greatly appreciate hearing what you have to say on the matter of
Wilson's Thyroid Syndrome.
Dear Julie --
Thanks for the note about the manual. That would change things somewhat, if the
site was not making money; at least not on the manual. Suffice it to say that we
don't know anywhere near enough about the thyroid and bipolar symptoms, or even
mood symptoms in general, but particularly bipolar disorder. I've summarized
everything I know about that relationship on a page called
I just reviewed the Wilson's site. I must say, when you
first go there, it still looks like someone trying to hook people and sell them
something. Just took me longer this time to figure out what they are selling.
Looks like the main thing being sold there now is a slow-release T3. That might
actually be a very good idea -- but it sure would be nice to see some research
on this. A friend of mine, a colleague in Colorado, has over 100 patients
treated with T3, using the regular old T3 called Cytomel (not slow release).
He's very sure it is helping people with treatment-resistant depression. A
slow-release version of T3 would be very useful.
And then the next step would be to study whether it
worked better than T3 alone; or at least to study whether it actually works in
some fashion, and publish those results, so that other scientists in the field
would have the opportunity to review and perhaps try to replicate those results.
Instead Dr. Wilson or whoever is running that site has stepped outside this
research process and positioned himself to make money. As you can tell that irks
There is a recent result in using thyroid for
depression, indeed for treatment-resistant depression of a sort. Note that
this is not bipolar depression, but the treatment resistance may have
selected for a group of patients who do indeed have something closer to bipolar
disorder. In a recent very large federally funded research program called the
STAR*D, T3 was compared to lithium as add-ons ("augmentation") to an
Both worked to a similar degree and neither worked really well, but some
patients clearly improved. The authors concluded that T3 was probably the better
of the two options because it is simpler to use.
Thus I would not be surprised if this T3 idea is
underused. And I will look further into getting a slow-release T3 for my
patients as an option locally (I just can't swallow the idea of buying it from
that site -- so to speak).
Published December, 2006