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Open Access Letter to the Editor

Coincidence of remission of postpartum Graves' disease and use of omega-3 fatty acid supplements

Sarah J Breese McCoy

Author Affiliations

OSU Center for Health Sciences and College of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery, 1111 W. 17th St., Tulsa, Oklahoma 74107, USA

Thyroid Research 2011, 4:16  doi:10.1186/1756-6614-4-16

Published: 16 November 2011

Abstract

I developed Graves' Disease four months postpartum. After one year on propylthiouracil, I learned that omega-3 fatty acids may reduce inflammation associated with certain autoimmune disorders, although no investigations for thyroiditis have been reported. Within eight weeks of beginning flaxseed oil supplements, TSH levels normalized, but fell somewhat when flaxseed was decreased and PTU discontinued. During another pregnancy, plasma TSH normalized, but was again suppressed by four weeks postpartum, then undetectable by four months. This time, flaxseed supplementation alone coincided with TSH normalization. Omega-3 fatty acids should be investigated as a potential treatment for autoimmune thyroid disease.

Keywords:
Graves Disease; omega-3 fatty acids; postpartum thyroiditis; hyperthyroidism