Can a Thyroid Nodule Cause Problems with Pregnancy?

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,:
This is my second pregnancy. The first resulted in a spontaneous abortion at week 7 back in February. I took 2 positive home tests last week, so I am about 5 weeks from first day of last menstrual period.

My question is regarding the possibility of low thyroid levels. I have had a decent sized thyroid nodule for the past 8-10 years, but have been asymptomatic from what I can tell. I do not take any medication. Since I did have a prior miscarriage, I am concerned that low thyroid levels may have had something to do with it.

My first pre-natal visit is not until week 8, which I know is standard, but I wonder if a blood test before that time to check my thyroid levels might be a good idea. From what I have read, early supplementation is critical to prevent miscarriage and to prevent low IQ and low birth weights. Should I ask for a blood test, and could the pregnancy be in jeopardy?

Thank you for your consideration,

G in SD

ANSWER

Yes and yes!!! Hypothyroidism is a very easily corrected condition that can cause miscarriage.

-- Cynthia, CNM. PhD.

Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.