Support group moderators

Who are we?

We are a team of thyroid patient peer-leaders who help keep the group stay on track and engage together productively. We aim to lead by example as we comment and post in a friendly, compassionate, informative, thoughtful way. We discuss strategies and challenges together on an ongoing basis.

Each of us has been mentored and supported by fellow thyroid patients over the years, and we’re now giving back, even though many of us still face health challenges.

We appreciate you.

Thank you in advance for your participation with us in the forum. We continue to learn more as we share our stories, insights, suggestions, and knowledge in our group. We believe we can benefit from your support and expertise as much as you can benefit from ours.

Tania S. S.

Co-Admin and moderator

Hi, I’m Tania, a Canadian thyroid patient in my early fifties with a completely atrophied thyroid due to autoimmune thyroid disease. I spent about 13 years on Synthroid alone until I had a health crisis after several years of low T3.

I ended up in emergency three times with hypothyroid signs and angina-like cardiovascular symptoms in 2016. I did my own research in the medical literature and found a way to access T3 therapy. I transitioned to LT3 monotherapy and healed as I did so. After stabilizing, I spent six months gradually trying to move to desiccated thyroid, but sadly, that failed. The cardiovascular spasms came back and my lab results looked like central hypo, so I returned to safety and health on LT3 alone.

My other autoimmune conditions, Ankylosing Spondylitis and Uveitis, which caused me intense suffering in my 20s, are now mostly in remission after doing some permanent damage. I struggled with weight gain in my 30s and 40s, but I’ve been maintaining healthy weight loss without calorie restriction since 2013. I’m a lot more vigilant about my health, realizing how fragile it can be.

Despite the challenges of managing 3-5 doses per day of a thyroid medication with a short half-life, I’ve been thriving more than I ever did on LT4 monotherapy. I can finally think clearly and research productively, and my emotional life is finally calm and well-balanced. I’m finally well enough to help others, including my mother and my sister, self-advocate in their thyroid therapy.

Beyond my full-time employment as a tenured research professor in communication studies at the University of Calgary, I spend my time co-leading Thyroid Patients Canada as a founding member. I bring to our organization my academic skills and experience as a teacher, leader, researcher, writer, and communication analyst. I enjoy analyzing and disseminating thyroid science as I write blog posts for our website and communicate through images and memes. In this group and others, it is truly an honor share my growing knowledge through informal dialogue with my fellow thyroid patients.

Alexa R. M.

Co-Admin and moderator

Hello, my name is Alexa, a Canadian thyroid patient and a co-leader of Thyroid Patients Canada alongside Tania S. S. I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism in 2017 after over two years of experiencing life altering symptoms that doctors couldn’t figure out.

I was experiencing vertigo and dissociation day in and day out, as well as a sudden onset of anxiety and daily panic attacks. I saw GPs, an ENT, a Neurologist and a psychologist for a year because doctors concluded that my symptoms were all in my head. Finally, routine bloodwork showed a slightly elevated TSH. I was so excited to have an answer and thought that the low dose of Synthroid I was prescribed would solve all of my problems. Sadly, this wasn’t the case, and I began researching extensively and learning about the disconnect between the standard of care for thyroid patients and the actual needs of this patient population.

Once I began to understand the science and better advocate for myself, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, and found medical professionals who were willing to work with me and support me in finding the best treatment options for my unique circumstances. For me, combination therapy with compounded levothyroxine and Cytomel is most effective, but it took me a lot of trial and error to get to this point.

I just completed my master’s degree in Health Sciences from Carleton University in Ottawa. I have extensive experience as a researcher and policy analyst in the field of health sciences, and I am passionate about using these skills to support and advocate for thyroid patients.

Linda P.

Moderator

Hello, I’m Linda. I’m retired and live in the UK. I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism at the age of 41, but had been ill probably from my early teen years.

I have several autoimmune conditions, including Lupus, Hughes Syndrome, and others. I had a pituitary apoplexy when I was 2 months pregnant with my second child, causing several deficiencies in pituitary hormones.

Because of the complex nature of my health, I research everything, not just thyroid. I delve into my genetics now and again. My father died of thyroid cancer. I can see hypothyroidism in my daughter and two of my granddaughters, and I fight for proper thyroid diagnosis and treatment for them.

I’ve spent the last 3 years as a founder member of the ITT Campaign (Improve Thyroid Treatment) in the UK. We have been very successful in many ways engaging with health authorities such as the NHS (National Health Service). Last year the main thyroid support groups in the UK created a joint group now called the “T3 group” who liaise with several members of the House of Lords and the President of the British Thyroid Association.

Suzanne S.

Moderator

Hello, my name is Suzanne, a thyroid patient from Ontario, Canada. My goal is to help, support and listen to others and guide you to the right resources for your unique situation. I’m a Registered Holistic Nutritionist as of 2005 and am passionate about hypothyroidism, especially about supporting harder-to-diagnose-and-treat hypothyroid cases.

I myself have had debilitating symptoms for as long as I can remember and have received few answers and misdiagnosis along the way. I have been officially diagnosed hypothyroid, POTS (Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome) and partial adrenal insufficiency. I’m still seeking a proper diagnosis of the cause of hypothyroidism (suspected Central-Tertiary Hypothyroidism), and with help from others, I’m getting closer.

I believe everyone is unique in their own situation and deserves to be treated with dignity, respect and belief.

Tara G.

Moderator

Hi, I’m Tara, a Canadian thyroid patient from the northwestern region of Ontario. I’m honored to be a moderator of this group.

I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism in my late 20s. It took me about a year to be taken seriously and receive a diagnosis. At that time I was put on levothyroxine, which worked well for me for about eight years.

In my mid-thirties I started to develop hypo symptoms again. Every time I went to my doctor, I was told I was fine. Over a decade I received many tests for other potential diseases and each came back negative. However, I believed my symptoms were thyroid related, so about two years ago, I decided to start doing my own research and I sought the help of a naturopathic doctor. I was also fortunate to be able to access a new family doctor, which is not easy in my community.

About a year ago, I made the switch to desiccated thyroid and it has made a huge difference! My symptoms more or less disappeared. I still have some struggles, but I am much better than I was before. I am not a thyroid expert, but I hope to be able to support as many people struggling with thyroid issues as possible!

Professionally, I have Masters degree in Sociology with a specialization in health and illness, and I have a Masters in Business Administration with a specialization in Human Resources Leadership. I work as a college professor in our Leadership for Healthcare Professionals program.

Eve J.

Moderator

Hi, I’m Eve, a Canadian thyroid patient from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. I’m going through a lot of challenges with my thyroid therapy, but I’ve been learning a lot. I look forward to participating as I’m able.


Concerns, suggestions, questions?

  1. Click on any moderator’s name or profile image within the Facebook group, and click “Message.”
    Or…
  2. Send a message to Thyroid Patients Canada on Facebook Messenger.
    Or…
  3. Contact Thyroid Patients Canada by email.

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