When she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer nearly 15 years ago, Sofia Vergara said that similar to every sickness, she panicked. As a result of having her thyroid removed, Vergara has been living life as a patient with hypothyroidism.
Hypothyroidism, an under-active thyroid gland, is a common condition where the thyroid gland (located in the lower front of the neck) cant produce enough thyroid hormone to keep the body functioning properly.
Though it’s very common in all ages and race, Cancer patients and Mexican-Americans are at higher risk of this condition, followed by women.
In an exclusive lunch with the press in Miami, Vergara opened up about the day she received the unfortunate news and how life’s been thereafter.
“It was a nightmare that I had thyroid cancer. I had no symptoms…I was healthy, I was young,” recalled Vergara, 42, of the day she got the news at only 28 years of age.
“But I trusted my doctor and I did my research, and had my thyroid removed.”
For the past 14 years, the Colombian actress has been living with hypothyroid, which she’s been able to control with a daily dose of the synthetic medication Synthroid.
“I tried to educate myself, I bought books and learned what it was going to mean for me. It’s important to find a doctor that you trust and understands you,” she added.
The Colombian actress also emphasized on the importance of doctors, medications and follow-ups.
“It’s important to be on top of everything,” she said, noting she takes her pill every day and never misses a blood test appointment.
Vergara, who is known for her role as Gloria in “Modern Family” and being the most paid TV actress in the world, doesn’t let her health condition get in the way of her daily life.
“It’s part of my life, I don’t even think about it,” she told the group of journalists.
“The last thing I do at night is get my pill ready and the first thing I do in the morning is take the pill before I jump in the shower. I don’t think about it anymore.”
As a patient with hypothyroidism, Vergara has served as an inspiration to many people with the condition.
Since 2013, she’s also been the face of “Follow the Script” campaign which aims to educate individuals about hypothyroidism. The campaign has now unveiled “Sigue el Guion” to also educate Spanish-speaking Americans.
“If they get educated, they can handle their sickness and live a better life. I live with it, I know how important it is to take care of yourself,” she said of being an advocate.
“Every case is different, but thyroid can control many, many things in your organism, so it’s very important to take charge.”