Blood Test For Tsh Levels

In hypothyroidism, as the name indicates, there is a decline in the functioning of the thyroid gland. The gland is either damaged as a result of an autoimmune disease of the thyroid gland, or in the case of an overactive thyroid gland, when more than the required amount of antithyroid drug has been administered. Similarly, hypothyroidism may occur following radio-iodine treatment or surgery, in cases of an overactive thyroid gland.
Subclinical hypothyroidism.

The most characteristic feature of an underactive thyroid gland is that it remains asymptomatic for a long period, and there are only vague symptoms in the beginning. Sometimes the diagnosis is made when a person is undergoing routine tests for a general medical check-up.

The hidden nature of the disease is clear enough. Such early cases of hypothyroidism are suspected, diagnosed/investigated and labelled under the head ‘Subclinical Hypothyroidism’. They may, however, still be in the infancy stage and have only minimal symptoms. This truly highlights the need for early diagnosis and treatment of all cases of hypothyroidism.

When to suspect subclinical hypothyroidism?

The disease may be suspected when the patient feels lethargic, especially in the case of a patient suffering from hyperthyroidism who is undergoing antithyroid drug treatment, or radio-iodine therapy, or has undergone surgery of the thyroid gland. Or, the condition may occur in cases which have a positive family history of hypothyroidism.

How to diagnose subclinical hypothyroidism?

Once suspected, estimation of the thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) in the blood should be carried out. The levels of this test will be elevated significantly, although the levels of T4 may be just on the lower side of the normal, or just below the normal level. T3 does not playa significant! diagnostic role in the detection of hypothyroidism, and its level may be found within normal limits.

What is TSH?

It is a hormone secreted by the pituitary gland, lying in the brain, which controls the activity of the thyroid gland. This hormone has got a highly stimulating action on thyroid activity, so that as soon as the activity of the thyroid gland decreases (hypothyroidism), and the quantity of the thyroid hormone, the major being T4, or even when it touches the lower limit of its normal range, there will be an increase in the secretion of TSH from the pituitary gland.

Hence there is a close relationship between the pituitary and thyroid glands so that a normal level of thyroid hormones may be maintained in the blood as far as possible. (However, it may be said in passing, that if hypothyroidism occurs as a result of the involvement/ disease of the pituitary gland, the levels of TSH will not be elevated, although T4 may be on the lower side).

Since the raised levels of TSH the blood is the most sensitive/ earliest index for the decreased function of the thyroid gland, this test, along with T4 must be carried out whenever there is the slightest suspicion regarding the underactivity of the thyroid gland.

Does subclinical hypothyroidism require treatment?

Difficulty does arise in such cases. However, it may be said that in the absence of significant, rather troublesome symptoms, the physician will have to make his own judgement for the initiation of therapy. If no therapy is considered necessary for the time being, the patient must be monitored at least 3-6 monthly, so that the disease does not progress unnoticed.

As regards the size of the thyroid gland, in cases of hypothyroidism, it may be noted that the gland may be either enlarged or atrophied, or may remain normal in size. Hence the size of the thyroid does not indicate the activity of the gland, and, therefore, one has to depend on the levels of thyroid function tests in the blood.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. QUESTION:
    Does adderall increase TSH levels in a blood test?
    I recently went to the doctor and she did some blood tests to check if I showed signs of hypothyroidism. The tests showed that my TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) levels are higher than normal. When these tests were done I was under the influence of adderall which I am not prescribed. Is adderall the reason for my increased TSH levels, or are these two things unrelated? Thanks.

    P.S. Please save any comments about adderall abuse. What goes into my body is my decision.

    • ANSWER:
      No comments on the adderall use except that it it is more likely to cause a decrease in TSH

  2. QUESTION:
    tsh levels- my blood test shows 7.948 for my tsh level. ct scan shows darker colored thyroid. any suggestions?
    i had these tests done last week. i have been having major problems for 2 years. i smoked for 15 years. i quit last october.

    • ANSWER:
      Your TSH is elevated. TSH stimulates the thyroid to produce more T3 and T4, two thyroid hormones.

      Have your physician refer you to a good endocrinologist that can help guide you through treatment. As far as having a dark colored thyroid, I’m not sure I understand the description. Was this the result of an uptake scan where they gave you some sort of iodine tracer? From prior experience, I am aware that dark spots on such a test are called “Cold Spots” and are areas where the thyroid tissue is not actively absorbing iodine. I was told that spots such as those might represent fluid-filled cysts or solid masses called ‘nodules’. Some nodules represent other health problems, so it would be to your advantage to follow up ASAP.

      An endocrinologist will be able to make sense of the tests you’ve had and interpret the results for you. Good luck. When you are under treatment, you’ll feel a lot better.

  3. QUESTION:
    If you have thyroid cancer will your TSH level in your blood test be off?
    My throat has been hurting for a month and my voice is hoarse. Sometimes my throat hurts when I breath or feels dry. I don’t have a cold or a runny nose or allergies or acid reflux. Is it possible to have thyroid cancer if your TSH levels are normal?

    • ANSWER:
      Yes, you can have thyroid cancer and a normal TSH…I did. To tell you the truth, it really doesn’t sound like you have thyroid cancer. Dry throat isn’t really a symptom of thyroid cancer, pain is rarely. You could have a virus with your voice issue. I would suggest going to your doctor to make sure everything is okay.

  4. QUESTION:
    25 weeks Pregnent, TSH level is 7.7. How it will effect on baby? Complete details of effect of Hyperthyriodism
    I am 24 weeks Pregnent. Last week I under gone to Blood test for Thyroid. Thyroid Test Results ( Blood Test ), TSH Level : 7.7 I want to Know how Heperthyroidism effects Baby’s Growth & Development. Precautions / Treatment required to minimise the adverse effects of this on Baby’s Development and Growth.

    • ANSWER:
      You have hypothyroidism (low thyroid). Yours isn’t too low, but it’s very important for a baby’s development that your thyroid be normal. You need to see an endocrinologist and get some thyroid medication to take!

  5. QUESTION:
    Do you need to fast for a TSH blood test?
    Have to give blood for a synthroid level test….

    • ANSWER:
      No. Most physicians say it doesn’t affect the TSH level if you fast or not.

      There have been studies that show TSH levels can be higher in the morning and can become lower later in the day.

      If your TSH levels show higher than normal, the doctor may diagnose you with hypothyroidism, or an underactive thyroid.

      A TSH test works sort of “backwards”. TSH is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland. It “tells” your thyroid to make more thyroid hormone. So if your thyroid isn’t making enough hormone, your pituitary will excrete extra TSH into your blood to try to get the thyroid to work harder.

  6. QUESTION:
    What is the normal range for TSH levels?
    I had a blood test done and my TSH levels came back at a 4.88. My GP said that this means my thyorid is just outside the normal range and is slightly underactive. What is the normal range for TSH levels? Also, he wrote me a script for Synthoid 50 mcg. Is it really necessary that I take it?

    • ANSWER:
      Until recently, the standard was that the normal range for TSH at most laboratories has fallen in the 0.5 to 5.0 range, with hyperthyroidism being below .5, and hypothyroidism above 5.0.

      The new guidelines, however, the range for acceptable thyroid function, and thyroid treatment should be considered for patients who test between the target TSH levels of 0.3 to 3.0, a far narrower range.

  7. QUESTION:
    Is .7 for Free T4 blood test and 1.53 for TSH good levels?
    Don’t see dr. again till May. Just wanted to know. Thanks.

    • ANSWER:
      TSH – Thyroid Stimulating Hormone

      Optimal range 1.8 – 3.0 mU/L
      Typical reference range – 0.5 – 5.5 mU/L

      NOTE: TSH test can be “normal” with thyroid symptoms especially hashimoto’s thyroiditis (autoimmune hypothyroidism).

      Free T4 – measures the amount of free, or active, T4 in the blood.>>>

      Optimal levels 1.0 – 1.5 ng/dL
      Typical reference range – 0.7 – 1.50 ng/dL

      Slightly lower than optimal. Thyroid antibodies and free T3 will give a better picture of your thyroid health.

      Free T3 – best marker for measuring thyroid hormones available to thyroid receptor sites.

      Functional range: 300 – 450 pg/mL
      Typical laboratory range: 260 – 480 pg/mL

      Thyroid antibodies – used to determine autoimmune thyroid disease. The most common cause of hypothyroidism is Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and the most common cause of hyperthyroidism is Graves Disease.

      Thyroid Peroxidase Antibody (TPO) – The TPO test measures an antibody that is found in most patients with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. This antibody blocks an enzyme that is responsible for adding iodine to a protein in thyroid hormone production. In clinical trials, the frequency of elevated TPO levels in patients with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis was 90% compared to 64% in patients with Graves Disease.

      Typical lab reference range – 15 – 30 ug/dl
      Functional 18 – 27 ug/dl

      Antithyroglobulin Antibody (TgAb) – This antibody blocks a protein made by the thyroid that is necessary for making thyroid hormones, T4 and T3. It may also be positive in patients with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

      Typical lab reference range – 15 – 30 ug/dl
      Functional 18 – 27 ug/dl

  8. QUESTION:
    can dr determine whether or not you are taking medication through a blood test?
    can dr determine whether or not you are taking medication through a blood test. I am supposed to be on medication (the dr thinks i am) however I am not wanting to take it. He has taken my blood test to test my TSH level (thyroid) but I saw he was testing me for something else too not sure what it is though…….

    • ANSWER:
      In the case of hyperthyroidism, your levels of the thyroid hormones will go up and the TSH will come down if you are not taking your medicines.The dr will think these levels have gone up in spite of your medications and may increase the dose,which could be very dangerous. He will only know that you are not taking your medicines if he does the blood tests for the individual drugs which normaly he wont do.Why dont you ask him what hes testing for? its your right

  9. QUESTION:
    hypothyroidism? even with normal TSH levels?
    hi guys so im a 24 yr old male in good health except for this

    ive been having these symptons for a few months and finally decided to go to the doctor to get checked out, basically i have;

    shaky hands,
    fast heart beat,
    sweating of palms,
    trouble sleeping,
    nervous,
    moody (quietness)

    so basically the doctor did a bllod test for TSH levels and the results came back normal 4.46, but he wreckons that i still may have hypothroidism so hes done more blood tests and ive to go to a radiologist this week for ultra sound on the thyroid.

    my question is is it possible to have hypothroidism even with normal TSH levels ? and also all my symptons seem more related to hyperthroidism not hypothyroidism.

    Another thing is that the doctor is doing a blood sugar level test to test for diabities can this also be a sympton of hypothyroidism?

    anyone got any info?

    • ANSWER:
      4.46 is not normal. It indicates hypothyroidism.

      But your symptoms indicate hyperthyroidism.

      Yours is a very perplexing case, and you need to make sure you have a very good doctor who is able and willing to get to the bottom of this. You need more blood tests for a definitive diagnosis. Then you need to have the TSH vs. symptoms conflict explained. You need free T3, free T4, TSI, TPO.

      You may find that you have something completely unrelated to your thyroid going on.

      Diabetes is not a symptom of hypothyroidism.

  10. QUESTION:
    What should my TSH level be when i have a blood thyroid test completed?
    In 2002 i had my thyroid checked and it was 5.78, then in 2004 it was 2.28 and in 2005 it was 1.78.

    I now have every symptom of a underactive thyroid. I am so tired i can’t get through the day with at least 2 naps. Just walking a short distance my pulse races and i feel really weak & tired. I am cold, hands & feet are cold and numb,constipation, barely have had a period in 1 1/2 yrs, forgetting things, trouble speaking, puffy eyelids and alot of face swelling & pressure, sore knee joints. I just feel BAD like i just can’t even get through each day. Is it normal for my TSH level to drop each year? I am getting really worried.

    • ANSWER:
      Even though this range is not used by all doctors, the normal range for TSH is 0.3 to 3.0, high results indicate hypothyroidism. Your TSH results have indicated that you have become better not worse. There is a rare form of hypothyroidism, which is caused by a failure of the pituitary and not the thyroid. That would be the only explanation of your TSH going down and you becoming hypothyroid. The pituitary makes TSH and that tells your thyroid to produce T4 and T3 hormones, which regulate your metabolism. Your pituitary does more than just this.

      You need to see a doctor and have a full thyroid test. They need to test for T3 and T4 hormones to see if you have become hypothyroid. They also need to test for other things too. Find an endocrinologist (thyroid and metabolism specialist) and tell them you need to see them right away. You symptoms sound serious and you need medical help.

      I am not a doctor, just someone who had their thyroid removed after cancer.

  11. QUESTION:
    I have hypothyroidism, What can the effect of really high TSH levels have?
    The last time I got a blood test my TSH level was at 287!!! And normal thyroids function between 1 and 5! The doctor said that she had never seen thyroid levels in someone who was still walking and talking. But they did not even increase my Synthroid. All i know is that I am tired all the time. I am sick all the time. I don’t eat anything but still am gaining weight like crazy and bounce back in forth from being catatonic to an insomniac. I know these are all normal for hypothyroidism, but I am really scared. I go to college and take care of my grandmother but if something doesn’t change, I will not be able to do either anymore. I barely have the ability to shower every couple of days and makes sure I don’t starve myself.
    Yea, i went to an endocrinologist when I was 9, after my initial diagnosis. But now because of my insurance, they will not send me unless htey have “exhausted traditional methods” first. I think that after taking the medicine and still having such high levels, That traditional methods are obviously not working.

    • ANSWER:
      Wow go to an endocrinologist, mine was 27 right after I gave birth and they sent me to my endocrinologist. I am tired all the time, how are you functioning are you gaining weight, that normally is the first side effect I see. Good luck they need to up your synthroid how much do you take?

  12. QUESTION:
    Questions about Thyroid problems. T4 levels were low..not TSH levels are elevated.?
    Ok so my T4 levels were low, I got on 75 synthroid for 8 weeks and did another blood test. Now my TSH levels are elevated. What could be causing this? What are the symptoms of elevated TSH levels.

    • ANSWER:
      The dosage could be too high. Your doctor might want to decrease the dosage to see if that helps and do follow up blood tests. Good luck and hang in there!

  13. QUESTION:
    Just got the results of my blood test for progesterone, prolactin and TSH. Is this bad news?
    My doctor said my progesterone level was 2.3 and that is low. He said they like to see 10 or 12 and above. He said I did ovulate but it wasn’t a “good” ovulation. What does he mean? I know I must have ovulated because I saw the egg white cervical mucus on 03/11/08. My last period (at that time) was on 02/17/08 and the blood test was taken on 03/11/08. He is going to have the nurse call in a prescription for Clomid today. At first he was reluctant to prescribe it, but I guess since he knows I am ovulating somewhat he is willing to prescribe it. I am on my cycle for this month (started 03/22/08), but he said I can take the Clomid today even though I am on day 6.

    What would be the cause of low progesterone levels? He said the prolactin and TSH levels where normal. I am so worried and depressed … and we just got started with this. I have always known I was going to have problems. I have PCOS and a damaged tube and a fibroid. But I am so discouraged.

    • ANSWER:
      Progesterone levels are pretty easy to fix, so don’t worry about that so much. They can give you tablets or creams, and they work pretty well (and they work instantly too; the first day you take them).

      The doctor saying ‘bad’ ovulation probably refers to the quality of the egg, which can also be altered with medication and I’m sure the Clomid will help. The fact that you can recognize ovulation from the EWCM will be a great help too, because it means you’re timing the BD perfectly.

      Don’t worry or feel low about it … just remember, now that you’re being proactive about it, the time you’ll have to wait to get pregnant is getting shorter and shorter. Hey, you could have gone on for years without tests, and you would never have known why you didn’t get pregnant!

      Wishing you the very best of luck xoxoxox

  14. QUESTION:
    i consult a doctor . And they adviced me to do certain test like blood sugar, HB, Torch& TSH test. and my?
    report showed blood sugar is normal but my Hb = 9 and in torch test ‘herpes simplex virus (HSV)= 1.465 and doctor said it was not normal and she prescribed medicine for 7 days. Is this anyting wrong with the increased of HSV level in blood.

    • ANSWER:
      That means you have an infection. Dont worry, with the medicine she has prescribed, you will be fine. Take care.

  15. QUESTION:
    Why would my TSH levels elevate between elevated and normal?
    Basically, the question I have is slightly more complex.

    I have been to and from doctor’s, ER’s, etc. These are my symptoms:
    Stiff neck
    Joints are weak, pop alot, etc
    I am unable to work out(In the past my recovery time took longer)
    Insomnia
    Trouble breathing, and lying down makes it difficult to breath. Almost as if gravity pushes down on me, so I cannot breathe as well when laying down.
    Weight Loss(I lost about 15 pounds in 3 weeks. I am now at 140)
    Burning sensations
    ———————————–

    Basically, They initially sent me to a neurologist. After seeing how my joints bulge out at my hand, and my symptoms.. he wanted me to see a rheumatologist, he believed I had rheumatoid arthritis. Problem is, my referral was declined twice, as all the blood tests, X-rays, etc showed nothing. The exception was my TSH levels last week. This made them believe I might have a form of hyperthyroidism.

    So, I went to my Primary Care Giver to get a referral to an endocrinologist. The doctor told me that I seemed to have atrophy in my hands, maybe a sign of muscle degeneration. My fingers are very skinny as well. Nonetheless, he wanted to re-take the bloodtest to test my TSH levels.

    Well, they came back normal. The blood tests were taken three days ago, and I just got the results. My original test(which came back elevated) was a week before. To be honest.. It throws me off.

    I just honestly want some answers. I have college and the sort. The pain is getting more and more intense. My sleep is shit. Its starting to slightly drive me insane. Seems healthcare system is shit. They dont even listen, they are going to give me Hydrocodone, Anti-Inflammatorys, Hell..They even gave me Flexeril(Which I believe is a muscle relaxer). None worked.. They still apparently believe it will.

    Anyways, this is not a rant. I am currently wondering what disease could be associated with this sudden “change” in TSH. Atrophied muscles in the hands. And.. My joints seem doughy(As a doctor said). I also have an extreme intolerance for hot or cold. Anything near warm causes sweating, coldness causes pains.

    Thanks – I apologize for the random ranting.. Dont got much to do anyhow, but wait.
    Edit: Whoops.. Apologize. The questions is “Why would my TSH levels change between elevated and normal”

    • ANSWER:
      TSH levels change daily. This link goes through various reasons for a TSH variation>>>

      http://www.thyroid-info.com/articles/tsh-fluctuating.htm

      Most cases of hyperthyroidism is from Grave’s Disease (autoimmune hyperthyroidism).

      http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000358.htm

      http://www.healthscout.com/ency/68/489/main.html

      http://www.graves-disease-symptoms.com/

      Tests need to have more than TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) to get a better picture of your thyroid health…

      * TSH
      * Free T3 (active thyroid hormone) and free T4 (storage hormone) – note: free is more accurate than total
      * Radioactive iodine uptake
      * Orbit CT scan or ultrasound
      * Thyroglobulin antibody (TgAb)
      * Thyroid peroxidase antibody (TPOAb)
      * Anti-TSH receptor antibody (TRAb)

      http://www.labtestsonline.org/understanding/analytes/thyroid_antibodies/test.html

  16. QUESTION:
    A patient who has been taking synthetic thyroid hormone for ten years has a blood test twice a year to determi?
    A patient who has been taking synthetic thyroid hormone for ten years has a blood test twice a year to determine the proper dosage of her medication. Her most recent blood test reveals that her TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) levels are lower than normal. Will her doctor increase or decrease the dosage of her medication? Why

    • ANSWER:
      When TSH levels are low, it means there is often too much thyroid hormone (T3, T4) in the blood.

      When T3 and T4 are high, TSH becomes low to keep the thyroid from being stimulated.

      When T3 and T4 are low, TSH becomes high to stimulate the thyroid to produce more.

      Therefore the physician may decrease the dosage.

      (Please tell me you’re not one of my students.)

  17. QUESTION:
    do any of these blood tests test for testosterone levels?
    Glucose
    tsh
    ferritin
    and iron and transferin saturation

    do any of these test for testosterone in a body?

    • ANSWER:
      No, a testosterone test is pretty specific. I’ve never heard of a Dr. trying to “infer” or guess someone’s testosterone level from anything other than a testosterone test.

  18. QUESTION:
    I HAD A BLOOD TEST LAST WEEK ON MY 3RD DAY OF CYCLE MY PROLACTIN LEVEL IS 24.4 AND TSH LEVEL IS 4.7?
    CAN ANYBODY EXPLAIN ME WHETHER THESE LEVELS ARE NORMAL AS I AM TTC FOR 2 YEARS NOW.

    • ANSWER:

  19. QUESTION:
    What are normal TSH and FT4 levels(for the thyroid)?
    I went to the doctor and had my blood tested for thyroid hormones. My TSH level was at 29.25 and my FT4 was at .7. I’ve started on synthroid, but how far off was I from the normal range of hormones?

    • ANSWER:
      Until recently, the standard was that the normal range for TSH at most laboratories has fallen in the 0.5 to 5.0 range, with hyperthyroidism being below .5, and hypothyroidism above 5.0 – so your level is far off the scale.

      For instance, the FT4 normal or reference range is usually 0.8-1.8 ng/dl, and the mean or average level is 1.3 ng/dl. Your level is close to the normal range.

  20. QUESTION:
    Thyroid, high TSH levels?
    Through blood tests,l have discovered that l have very high TSH levels.The 1st blood test showed,14,the next 11,then 10 now 14.l eat a lot of almonds and walnuts.Do these readings have any impact on what l eat.My doctor has put me on medication for an under active thyroid,although l do not have any of the symptions realiting to this thyroid problem,l am a 55 yr old female.Healthy and with lots of energy.l also have had an ultra sound and exrays all indicate under active thyroid.lnterseted in your comments.Thank you.

    • ANSWER:
      If your levels are high than you have a thyroid problem.
      I have an underactive thyroid. All the symptoms I never would have put together as having a problem. I went to the doctor for allergies and when she felt my neck she said my thyroid was big. I had it checked and my levels were very high, had the ultrasound and radioactive iodine uptake. I’m now on synthroid and feel so much better. My symptoms were dry skin, shallow looking face, I was so tired and I had road rage up the yang yang. I also had gained about 20 pounds. I chalked the weight and tiredness up to simply getting older. I was shocked to find out I had a problem. Anyway, meds have help so much, I no longer want to “kill” everyone who passes me in the car.

  21. QUESTION:
    Why is my TSH levels high then normal?
    I had a blood test about 3 months to test for Pcos, and it came back that my TSH levels were high it was like 5.33 then I had another blood test a week ago and it came back my TSH levels were normal at 2, what could this mean?

    • ANSWER:
      Could mean something, could mean nothing at all. Tests are not perfect, and it’s impossible to say over the internet what the meaning is of one isolated test result.

      What does your endocrinologist say? He or she is the person you should be asking.

  22. QUESTION:
    Is this TSH level normal for a guy my age?
    I recently did a blood test and my TSH level came back as 3.18. I am 18 years old, male, fairly athletic. Is this TSH level normal for a guy my age?

    • ANSWER:
      It’s normal.

  23. QUESTION:
    THYROID test results *** need help understanding?
    I recently went in for a physical and due to an enlarged thyroid my doc suggested a thyroid ultrascan and a TSH blood test. The scan found some nodules in my thyroid and the blood test found my TSH levels to be high. (some websites say that it can be up to 5 and still be normal, but my test results said 0.34-2.50 UIU/mL were normal range) My result was 2.53. He explained that having a high TSH level means that my thyroid is producing the hormones but the nodules were more than likely blocking them from being released and that was the explanation for the high result (that’s how I understood it at least) I do have an appointment this week to take a little pill and 24 hours later go in for another scan of the thyroid and to determine what needs to be done with the nodules. But here’s my question…

    Are my health issues linked to this? Weight gain, ALWAYS tired, can’t sleep at night, depressed and headaches.

    Will these go away after treatment?
    What are typical treatments for nodules?

    • ANSWER:
      A TSH of 2.53 could mean mild hypothyroidism or the enlarged thyroid could be causing sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is when your throat become obstructed or partially obstructed while you sleep. While hypothyroidism will cause tiredness and weight gain. Sleep apnea will cause tireness, will wake you from your sleep, and lead to headaches. Hypothyroidism also worsen sleep apnea, so it could be a combination of the two.

      I do not understand what the doctor meant by nodules block hormones release.

      I heard of cold nodules, nodules that do not produce hormones. They can find those with a radioactive iodine test.

      If the nodules are non-cancerous which is the more likely scenario, they may do nothing or if causing discomfort or you insist surgically removing the nodules. The also could try to kill nodules with a high dose of radioactive iodine.

      If cancerous the whole thyroid will be surgically removed. Radioactive iodine is the follow up to this.

      Treatment may include thyroid medication, which is actually thyroid hormone. If non-cancerous it will be a small dose, and in some case may shrink the nodules. If your thyroid is fully removed you will need thyroid medication also but a larger dose.

  24. QUESTION:
    Thyroid Help with TSH levels?
    Hi

    Just a question reguarding blood test results.
    In Nov 2009 doc noticed enlarged thyroid, did bloods TSH was 1.84

    Since then Ive been getting sicker and sicker, and my thyroid is swollen to 5cm. Had more bloods, TSH has now dropped to 0.76 T3 5.2 and T415.0

    I have every symptom of hyperthyroidism and family history of both. I also had an ultrasound the other day, awaiting results.

    Is it Normal for Thyroid levels to drop so much in a short amount of time? Because the labs here in NZ reguard them as being in Normal range still!

    Tho my mother is hypo and is on border and still reguarded as normal but receiving treatment and made her feel sooo much better. I’m thinking this maybe the case with.

    • ANSWER:

  25. QUESTION:
    I had my thyroid completely removed 6 weeks ago and since then my TSH levels are dropping instead of rising?
    3 weeks after my thyriod surgery my TSH level was at 31, the next week it dropped to 28 then 25 and now 18 (blood tests once per week). How is it possible for my TSH to be dropping when I have no thyroid?

    I have thyroid cancer and cannot have the radioiodine scan until my TSH is at 40, but the levels are going the wrong way.

    • ANSWER:
      If you’ve had a total thyoidectomy, and it’s been 6 weeks, your TSH should rise. Are you taking Cytomel in preparation for your RAI? Even though Cytomel is T3 and not T4…maybe it’s causing your TSH to drop. Another possibility is a pituitary problem (pituitary tumor). Are they sure that your thyroid was cancerous and not your pituitary?

      If nothing else…ask if you can have a shot of Thyrogen. That will artificially raise your TSH well over 100 in about 2 days. Usually it’s reserved for those who have had at least one round of RAI “the natural way” meaning without any help of Thyrogen. But in your case..you might be the exception and you might need thyrogen.

      Good luck!

      mari

  26. QUESTION:
    My doctor referred me for a blood test..slightly raised TSH?
    I had the blood test taken in work,mainly because he was querying ibs. But because my immune system has been down recently and i’ve come down with illnesses- flu’s and colds- i think he wanted to check a few things.

    I work in the hospital and had the bloods done in work. My TSH has come back at 4.1 and the upper level for normal is 4. I know this because i looked on the path computer. The antibody test is incomplete..maybe this takes longer?

    Does this suggest an underactive tyhroid or because its only slightly raised- pretty much ok.
    I do feel tired quite a lot and i can relate to the symptoms of an underactive thyroid..
    Will i need other blood tests?
    Or will they overlook the slightly raised level and send me packing?

    • ANSWER:
      Actually things like an infection or flu can effect the TSH level. The borderline point at which they start considering treatment is TSH of 10-11. If it is higher than this, they will suggest you need treatment. If it is at 10, they will say it is your choice, but keep an eye on it and get checked periodically if you don’t treat.

      At 4.1, on top of recently having an illness, this is probably not indicative of a thyroid problem. Wait a month or two, and then get your TSH checked again. Our TSH levels naturally vary, and it’s only when they are very high, 10s-100s that you get the really noticeable symptoms. The antibody test is more indicative if you may have an auto-immune thyroid disease, but even then, the amount of antibodies present varies even in healthy individuals, and it can be indicative of other conditions. If this value is very high then you may have an auto-immune issue.

      However if you do have auto-immune, e.g. Hashimoto’s the treatment doctors prescribe usually doesn’t lower your antibody levels much – which means your thyroid will usually still get broken down. They just give you synthetic thyroid hormone so your thyroid doesn’t have to do any work and your TSH drops. Instead you should supplement with selenium or eat selenium rich foods, multiple studies have shown selenium reduces anti-thyroid antibody counts in adults with auto-immune thyroid diseases significantly, sometimes completely eliminating the antibodies. ( a few are listed here: http://www.drdach.com/Selenium_Hashimotos.html )

  27. QUESTION:
    Normal TSH level, but enlarged thyroid… what’s the problem?
    I’ve had an enlarged thyroid for a few years now, it’s somewhat noticeable. I also feel uncomfortable if I wear close-neck shirts or necklaces, I keep pulling it away from my neck.

    I have some symptoms of hypothyroidism, so I had a thyroid ultrasound which shows a nodule. I then had a needle biopsy which showed it was benign.. but every time I have a blood test, my TSH level is normal. (My test about a week ago showed a TSH level of 1.64 uIU/mL).

    What should I do to reduce the enlargement when hormone therapy is obviously not needed? What could the problem actually be if not hypothyroidism? Please help me understand what’s going on..

    • ANSWER:
      I would suggest a test for antibodies. I had hashimotos, which is an autoimmune disease of the thyroid. sometimes it was big, and I was a bit hyperthyroid and sometimes it shrunk back and I was hypo. It took years to get the correct diagnosis….but when I look back at old photos, I can see it! Also, at one point, my daughter had thyroiditis, which is an inflammation of the thyroid.
      as to nodules, when they do your blood work, you should keep track of your tg levels, if they are going up, it could be a time for more tests. If your nodules and thyroid are making you uncomfortable, at some point your doctor may suggest a removal. I am giving you my thyca web site (which is for thyroid cancer), not because I think you have it, but because of all the resources…endos, surgeons, studies, etc. The recovery was so much easier than you would think! I also learned alot from the mayo clinic (look under nodules) and there is a book called the complete thyroid book by dr. ain which was pretty good. Learn all you can about nodules and hashimotos etc…and if your endo is mostly diabetes, you may want to look for a specialist. there is a thyroid chat group in the yahoo health groups…not cancer, just about thyroid and maybe they would be able to help as well. good health.

  28. QUESTION:
    got my blood test results in this morning need help plzzz?
    hi i was at my fertility doc last week who did a number of blood tests and a scan , but my tsh levels are high and my 3t4 levels were normal can any one explain what this means iv been ttc for 14 months the scan showed no pcos or endo , thanks im really scared abt this thanks sue

    • ANSWER:
      TSH levels are referring to thyroid levels and it could indicate hypothyroidism and your doctor may prescribe medication for this. To get pregnant you would want your levels to be at 1 or 2. Since your 3T4 levels are normal I would say once you get your TSH levels down that you should be able to conceiveve without problems!

  29. QUESTION:
    I fasted for 15 hours and exercised before my comp blood panel and cbc. Will my TSH levels come back high?
    I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to fast or not before and I went and biked for an hour in the morning before the test. I hope this won’t cause my test results to be off or will it? I don’t think it was supposed to be fasting …

    • ANSWER:
      It doesn’t matter if you fast or don’t fast for a TSH. Since you did a complete blood panel and CBC along wit the TSH, your fasting was necessary. Also, a high number on TSH means your hypothyroid…not making enough TSH.

  30. QUESTION:
    what does it mean if my doctor tells me my thyroid level is low?
    I have hypothyroidism. I recently had blood tests to test my TSH levels and only my TSH levels. I stopped taking my medication for 1 month before i began to feel symptoms so I went back on it. I feel no symptoms of hypothyroidism at all after being on my medication for 8 weeks, and my doctor told me that my thyroid level is low.

    • ANSWER:
      It would mean hypOthyroidism (higher TSH). TSH ‘norm’ should be .3 – 3 (w/ most feeling best at < 2). In case you did not already know this, the meds are for life. Thankfully, they are working.

      God bless

  31. QUESTION:
    My doctor ran me a blood test for progesterone, T3, T4, L.H, prolactin and estradiol…shouldn’t she?
    include a test for TSH level too?

    • ANSWER:
      those tests are concerned primarily with pregnacy, so why run a test for thyroid?

  32. QUESTION:
    my white blood cell count is high and my heart rate is consistently at least 100 bpm?
    I went to the doctor yesterday because my resting heart rate has been consistently high (at least 92, up to 120) for a few days. He did a 12-lead ECG which showed Sinus Tachycardia at 108 bpm. I also have a low grade fever and I’ve lost about 8 lbs in the past week or so. I’ve had a few dizzy spells, heart palpitations, and headaches, but nothing too note-worthy. The doctor says he feels a nodule on my thyroid. I had a blood test and he said my TSH level is normal, but my white blood cell count is somewhat high.

    I’m following up with an endocrinologist in about a week, but does anyone know what could possibly be going on?? I feel ok, a little off, but ok.
    i’ve never had any problems with anxiety, depression, etc. in fact, i feel just about as stressful as i have felt in a long time =)
    i mean stress free, not stressful!!
    i’m 21 and i’m in good shape. i’ve never had any past medical issues that are note-worthy.

    • ANSWER:
      you’ll have to wait for the doctor’s reply though. You can’t just ask things here about that kind of stuff, because someone might reply with the wrong answer, and you’ll think of other things, and that adds stress too.

      Try not to think about this or stressful problems., and let your body do the work.

      “What the mind can conceive, the body will achieve.”

      So all you have to do, is to do some meditations, and clear your mind, rid of things that make your mind ache, and if possible, do some exercises or yoga.

      I think you know what it means when white blood cells are high. But just in case I was wrong, I won’t mention it here.

  33. QUESTION:
    Does anyone know what these levels on my blood test mean?
    Alrighty, I am a 17 year old female, no smoking/drinking/drugz :] There’s some things on my blood test sheet thing either under or over the specified amounts.
    Was wondering if anyone could tell me about them?
    They are…
    T BIL – 1.3 H (normal results are 0.2-1.0)

    Chol – 201 H (normal is 120-200)

    Trig – 227 H (normal is <= 150 [which i'm guessing means less than or equal to])

    TSH f - .227 L (normal is .270 - 4.200)

    TSH f again, but different units - .011 L (normal is .700-6.100)

    LYM% - 42.9 H (normal is 25.0 - 40.0)

    K - 5.6 H (normal is 3.4 - 5.3)

    Gluc f - 110 H (normal is 70-99)

    ALB - 5.1 H (normal is 3.2 - 4.5)

    aaannnd that's it!
    So far, it is known I have anemia, but I'm already taking supplements to help it. I did not take them on the date of the blood test, I was instructed not to for this one.
    Any help?!

    • ANSWER:

  34. QUESTION:
    What are the normal levels for TSH, T4 and T3?
    I recently went to the doctors for blood tests related to migraines, And i received a letter back saying i may need endocrine tests as I have abnormal thyroid function.
    My free T4 is 23.5pmol/L
    free T3 is 9.0pmol/L
    TSH <0.05mU/L
    Can someone interpret these for me and tell me whether these reading are severe or just outisde the "normal" levels.

    • ANSWER:
      These suggest thyrotoxic results and would require treatment.

  35. QUESTION:
    Would 3 weeks on T4 lower your TSH levels and make your thyroid under active?
    Over the last few months I’ve gained weight for no reason so a friend gave me a pack of T4′s. I took then for 3 weeks (not every day). They didn’t work so I stopped taking them.

    A week or so after I had a blood test done for other reasons and my TSH levels were 0.01 (very low). So now the doctor wants me to take another blood test to see what my T3 and T4 levels are. I didn’t tell him about the T4…

    Could it be because I took the T4 that my TSH are very low? Or could my TSH levels have been low prior to me taking the T4???

    I have other symptoms of Hypothyroidism (under active) like weight gain, always cold, muscle sourness, fatigue and so on.

    If the T4 effected my TSH levels, should I ask the doctor for another test later to confirm it? If so, how long should I wait for my TSH levels to returned to normal (if they were effected by the T4 at all)?

    I’m very confused and would be great full for any help I could get.

    I should probably just tell the doctor, but I don’t think my mum would be very impressed…

    • ANSWER:

  36. QUESTION:
    How do I get my TSH levels to show?
    I have Graves Disease and my recent blood tests were as follows:

    Free T4 – 11

    TSH – not detected

    The receptionist gave me my results over the phone and asked me to make an appointment to see my doctor for next week.

    Last time I saw my Endocrinologist he said he wanted to see some TSH before he can put me forward for RAI.

    Now that I am behaving and doing as the doctors tell me – I really want to get things right. I have been on various websites but can’t find anything specific about Thyroid blood test results.

    So how do I get my TSH levels up?

    I take it I’m no longer hyperthyroid either, so am I normal (whatever that is)?

    • ANSWER:
      Patients with hyperthyroidism have suppressed TSH because of their high T4 levels. I assume you are now on carbimazole, this is suppressing your T4, which is now subnormal. This would normally result in a rise is T4. This has not yet happened.

      Do not be an idiot and play about, just wait for you body to adapt to its current situation.

  37. QUESTION:
    hypothyroidism can my medication make my TSH levels go up?
    Ive just been diagnosed with hypothyroidism well to start with my docotrs a complete FOOL not a very nice thing to say yes i no but he is he frirst sed i had hyperthyroidism they hypo the autoimune (without any blood tests on that) my docotrs actually crazy wel he put me on thyroxine 20mg for a munth then i had ym blood tests redone and my TSH went from 6.5 to 7.4 i thought the medication is ment to bring my levels down he tels me its fine.. wel relly is it? i do not trust him. cud i have another problem or am i lyk diagonosed rong? im 16 and my hair is falling out lyk crazy:( help mee guys!!

    • ANSWER:
      It is tough to advocate for yourself as a thyroid disease patient. Heck, you shouldn’t have to advocate for yourself at all, after all, you are paying the doctor to do his job. But the fact remains that you will be ignored, patronized, etc. So forceful communication is required. Start practicing now. Please try again with your question. In proper written English this time so that we can understand you.

  38. QUESTION:
    Should i see a doctor for thyroid problem?
    I feel all the symptoms of Hypothyroidism. My last blood test showed my TSH levels at 1.6. this is consider normal but what about my symptoms. Can i take pills to regulate? Can it be a hormonal problem?

    • ANSWER:
      i have a dead thyroide and i have to be on a pill for it and get blood test few times in the year to check the lev it is at so they know to up my pill or down it. I found out I had a dead one when I was around 16/17. I see alot has changed on me when i started these pills. A thyroid can do many things. it never hurts to go see a doctor and ask things about it and get another blood test so they can see it. So yes. go see a doctor. just think how many problems i could of haved if i didnt find out i had a dead one.

  39. QUESTION:
    2 weeks late, need new questions to ask my doctor
    i got results of an hcg blood test and tsh levels tested. hcg was negative, and tsh levels were normal.

    the first day of my last period was june 19th, 2 and a half weeks late. i have a normal 30 day cycle. for at least 3 weeks, my breasts have been sore, frequent urination, crampy, tugging and pulling in my lower abdomen, bloating (to the point of my pants being tight,) morning sickness, and gassiness. usually, i get no symptoms of pms, just cramping on the 2nd day of my period, the heaviest day.

    although, for the past few months, i do get nauseated about a week before my period arrives, all apart of my frustrations here…

    what i’m getting at, is i need new questions to ask my doctor. i have no idea what could be wrong with me. i honestly thought (and felt) like i was pregnant. when the doctor told me i wasn’t, i was in total disbelief. she said she could give me progesterone to give me a period, but i immediately turned her down (because i wasn’t thinking, and i was just literally in a state of shock.) in retrospect, i should have asked her about the progesterone (pro’s and con’s) but at the point she mentioned it, i just wanted to get her off the phone because i was getting ready to cry… due to the fact of not being pregnant when i honestly thought that i was, and sheer frustration that i still have no answers as to why i felt/feel this way.

    i will be calling her back this afternoon, but i need questions to ask her, or possible things we can look/test for. does anyone have ideas?

    by the way, i’m 21 and married for over a year.. if that matters.

    • ANSWER:
      Just tell her the symptoms that are bothering you and allow her to ask the questions. She is the one who is supposed to work out the answers for you. Answer her questions honestly and she should be able to make a diagnosis.

  40. QUESTION:
    Have a high anti-thyroglobulin AB count on my recent blood test w/ normal coun of T4,T3,Thyroxine & TSH??
    I just had blood work done and amont other things that came out abnormal the one that worries me the most is having high levels of anti-thyroglobulin AB with a totally normal Thyroid panel..What does this mean? Also I came out with high protein levels in my blood. I do suffer from ostheoarthritis and are being ruled out for Lupus since it runs in the family and having symptoms AND to top it all my LCD and cholesterol levels are high as well.. I’m really confused since I am only 18 pounds overweight, do not think I have such a poor diet, taking in consideration that my husband eats worse and have completely normal cholesterol levels.. is there any relation to a specific condition? Has this ever happened to anybody???

    • ANSWER:
      This is normal for Hashimoto’s disease. It means your immune system is probably attacking your thyroid and you will need to be treated for hypothyroidism. Hashimoto’s and hypothyroidism can affect your cholesterol levels and many other levels. Don’t freak out, it’s easy to treat once they get your medication dosage figured out, and it’s a fairly common disease. I have it, my mom, aunts, and grandma have it. Actually, it could be to blame for you being a little overweight too. it can make your joints hurt, make you sleepy, retain water, gain weight, have dry skin and hair, irregular periods, among other things. Even though your tsh and t4 and t3 were normal, it means your immune system is attacking your thyroid-maybe it hasn’t destroyed your thyroid yet but it can throw your hormones off enough to make you feel sick and to throw other tests off too.

  41. QUESTION:
    I have extremely high tsh levels?
    I am an obese 24 year old male. My doctor discovered through a blood test that i had a thryoid conditon. My TSH levels were at 130!!!! They prescribed synthroid 300mcg and i took it for a 3 months. In those 3 months i gained 100 lbs. When I stopped taking the pills, i came back down to 280lbs. I was off my meds for a year or so, and began taking synthroid again this time 150mcg, and gained 25lbs in a month. My levels are still at 130′s. I told my doctor about the weight gain and he says its not relevant. He assumes that b/c im overweight im just eating a lot. when in fact i work out 3 days a week and am on a diet, yet i still dont lose weight. Has this happened to anyone?? what other options do I have?? all the doctors ive seen (3) always give me synthroid and i gain weight with it. is there a natural solution for this problem?

    • ANSWER:
      I have marginally high TSH levels and lost weight by taking synthroid without any diet changes. Is it possible you changed your actions/diet after starting the meds? Thyroid hormone can affect lots of stuff, mood included.
      Also (and I haven’t done a TON of research on this so I don’t know the real deal), some people seem to respond better to natural thyroid hormone, sold under the name Amour or something like that. It’s extracted from horses, I think. But the deal with synthroid is that it’s the lesser-biologically active form, T3, presumably converted into the active form, T4, and some people seem to be less able to do the conversion. The reason T4 isn’t given is because if you get too much T4, you’ll likely die…. It has to be carefully controlled. Anyway, it’s something to ask about.

      I definitely second the ‘see an endocrinologist’ statement. A primary care doctor can’t be expected to know endocrinology in detail; it’s very complex.

      Weight can also royally screw up many things. Adipose tissue secretes hormones, and we don’t fully understand it yet. You’ve probably heard this a million times, but do try to cut down on calories if you can, load up on fiber, try different diets until you find one that works for you (low carb, low fat, high-veggie, etc). Genetics play a role in who responds well to what diet. Kudos on the workout; try to increase it if you can.

  42. QUESTION:
    Its 3 am I have a blood test for my THYROID at 7. Will not sleeping effect it?
    I fasted after 12. Stopped drinking water after 12.

    What will not sleeping and chewing gum do to effect my T3, T4, and TSH levels???

    • ANSWER:

  43. QUESTION:
    Routine test showed hypothyroid and diabetic level glucose – but I’m skinny?
    TSH levels were a little high and fasting blood sugar was 109.. followup test, TSH levels were clinically hypothyroid and fasting blood sugar was 153??!! I have no idea what’s going on– dr. called in Rx for synthroid but I won’t have an appt w/ her for 2 more months. I thought people with hypothyroid had LOW blood sugar and were overweight. Im very athletic, normal/low weight with low body fat (and almost no stomach fat- hallmarker of diabetes I thought). My resting pulse is typically around 100 and at times my blood pressure is clincally high. Dr. was clear I have HYPO thyroid, not HYPER. How’s this possible?

    I can’t find very clear info on the internet and won’t see my doctor again for a while.. what is going on with me? In January I was given antidepressant medication because of insomnia and depression/anxiety- it helped my mood a lot. Now I’m reading thyroid problem causes depression??

    I am very concerned about fasting blood sugar at 153- I typically eat low-carb foods. Do I need to avoid sugar totally? What will happen to me? How long will synthroid take to make me feel “better”?? I can relate to all the symptoms of hypothyroid and high blood sugar (EXCEPT weight gain), but I’ve always felt like that and thought I was oversensitive and lazy.

    Sorry for rambling.. I am overwhelmed by this diagnoses and don’t know where to turn. My doctor was nice and helpful, but we just talked briefly on the phone. She and the other doctors think the blood sugar issue is related to thyroid and probably not diabetes however she seemed very alarmed by how high my blood sugar was and asked a couple times about if I’d eaten breakfast that morning (I didn’t).
    The antidepressant I take is Effexor. I’ve never had a thyroid or fasting blood sugar tested before, and I feel the same way I always have, which makes me think this is not a new problem.

    • ANSWER:

  44. QUESTION:
    Has anyone ever experienced their TSH levels changing dramatically after thyroidectomy?
    I had a complete thyroidectomy in ’98, and they seemed to find a level of Synthroid that worked well for me, and now my levels are low, which means I have too much TSH> what could be the cause of tsh leles changing so much, within a period of 6 months from my last blood work test?? thank you

    • ANSWER:
      TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) is released from the pituitary gland once being told to do so from the hypthalmus via TRH (thryoid releasing hormone). Low levels of TSH could be due, in part, to low levels of TRH or a malfunction within the hypthalmus. Your brain is obviously compensating for the thyroidectomy and decreasing the levels of TSH and TRH accordingly.

      Still, it is wise to check with the physicion whom performed the procedure as a follow-up.

  45. QUESTION:
    I went to a diet center and they found out i have high TSH levels.?
    Do i have to go see a doctor to get a prescription for my thyroid or is there some type of walk in where they will give me a prescription if i show the blood test results?

    • ANSWER:
      Agree with the other answer. I would not suggest walking in and just picking up a prescription, you need to see an endochrinologist regularly to check your levels and to make sure you are taking the right dose for you. I have been on thyroid hormones for 6 yrs and I have been switched to different brands and dosing several times to serve my current need, so it is not a one-time fix. Hope this helps.

  46. QUESTION:
    My doctor says my TSH levels are fine, but I still feel awful…?
    I’ve been on levothyroxine for the last 10 months. I started out at 50 mcg, and, after about 3 months, I still didn’t feel a difference, so I got a second opinion with my husband’s doctor (general practitioner, not an endocrinologist). She tested my blood, told me my TSH levels were fine, but then she upped my dosage….by only 6 mcg (I take 1/2 of a 112 mcg pill each morning)…I think that was her way of just placating me because she felt I was exaggerating my symptoms. The pill I’m taking now still isn’t helping, in fact, I think I’m getting worse. I started writing a journal each day to catalog how I’m feeling, and in the last 2 months, I’ve noticed that I can barely swallow in the mornings (which, coincidentally, is when I take my pill…). I also have noticed that my face always has this slightly puffy look to it (I have gained some weight, but my face seems like it’s swollen…). I can’t sleep well, if at all, and, as a result, I feel like I’m slower mentally…as if I can’t function the way I used to. I feel awful all the time, and when I mention these symptoms to my doctor she treats me as if I’m an imbecile. So, I stopped mentioning it. Now, almost a year after starting the meds, I’m about ready to say forget it! I want to feel better. And, oddly enough, I felt ‘better’ before starting medicine to treat this disease. I’ve set an appointment with an endocrinologist, but I seriously don’t know what else to do….is there anyone else out there that has gone through the same thing??

    • ANSWER:
      Typical scenario. I have answered so many questions of the same kind. People know they are hypo and that something is wrong with them and their doctors ignorantly tell them they are normal based on tests that are known to be significantly flawed.

      Doctors are morons. Endocrinologists are even worse, you won’t need to see one since you are primary and they will provide zero help.

      Levo has a track record of providing no symptom relief, if not making people worse. It can actually make you more hypo if your adrenals aren’t being treated at the same time. Most of the doctors in the link (sources) understand this because after a person has had hypo for a while or been undertreated, their adrenals struggle and makes it harder for a person to tolerate thyroid medication, and hence makes them feel worse. It even says this in the Physicians Desk Reference, but doctors feel that they don’t have to pay attention to this.

      Myth #1: The TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) blood test is the only way to diagnose hypothyroidism/low thyroid.

      Facts: First, there is no perfect test in medicine—not the TSH or any other. Second, nearly a century before the TSH test was developed, doctors made the diagnosis of hypothyroidism without any tests at all. They listened to their patients and examined them. Since then, there have been many tests that have been blindly followed until they proved to be unreliable and were discarded.

      Myth #2: Normalizing the TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) blood test is the best way to treat hypothyroidism.

      Fact:Many studies have shown adjusting thyroid doses to normalize the TSH blood test leaves many patients with symptoms of low thyroid. World-renowned thyroid specialist, Sir Anthony Toft, MD, discussed this sad fact in 2002. In a speech to the British Endocrine Society, Dr. Toft reviewed some of the evidence that demonstrated that the modern TSH-centered approach was ineffective. He concluded, “…the treatment of hypothyroidism is about to come full circle”—going back to the approach that worked so well before all of our modern tests and treatments were invented.3

  47. QUESTION:
    would anyone medical be so kind as to analyse these blood test readings for me please?
    I went to the dr and was told im Anaemic, this makes sense as im so fatiqued, my thyroxine level has been increased aswell. Here are my blood test results, can a medical expert analyse these for me please ?
    Renal. Serum Sodium: 13.8
    Serum Potassium: 4.2
    Serum Creatinine: 73
    Glomerular filtreaton rate: >60
    FBC. HB (what does that mean please?) 13.1
    White Cell count: 3.9
    Platelets: 239
    Liver function: Serum Albumin: 42
    Serum Total Bilirubin: 11
    Serum Alkaline Phosphatase: 44
    ALT: 25
    CRP:V1
    Fasting blood glucose: 4.7
    TSH: Serum TSH Level: 6.69
    Free Thyoxine: 12.2
    Ferritin: 18
    vit B 12: 1239
    Folste: 18
    ESR: 10

    I would sincerely appreciate it if you could analyse these readings please and let me know if they are not good and what i can do please?

    Kind regards

    Clare

    • ANSWER:
      Your test results related to anemia include HB (hemoglobin) and Ferritin (iron). Both of theses are at the low end of normal or slightly below normal, depending on the analytical methods. There is no test information given for red blood cells which are also important for evaluating anemia. Your test results indicate low amounts of iron in your blood, and with your symptoms, it indicates you probably have iron-deficiency anemia.

  48. QUESTION:
    feeling exhausted all the time. TSH 5.9 T4 13 what does this mean?
    I went to my gp because I was feeling tired and unwell and I hadnt had a bleed in my break on the pill for the last 4 months. I had a Blood test and it came back Hormone levels all normal along with the other routine bloods. TSH abnormal at 4.66 , I have a History of Graves Disease in my Family! So Gp asked for thyroid antibodies test, TSH has come back at 5.9 and T4 13.7 antibodies not back yet. GP seemed to think this was Good??? I am sooo confused as far as I knew TSH up T4 down = Hypothyroidism TSH down T4 up = Hyperthyroidism, How can they both be up? And What does this mean?? I feel so awful and cant bare the thought of being left like this!!!

    • ANSWER:

  49. QUESTION:
    What is wrong with me and why are my TSH levels inconsistent?
    A little over a month ago I had some blood work done because I noticed that something just didn’t feel right for the last 2 years. Some of my issues were/are my hair falling out, my skins dry, my nails are brittle to the point where the break so much that they bleed, I’m only 22 years old and I am always extremely sluggish, always tired and very depressed and most importantly, I’ve been gaining a lot of weight. Just between this september and mid november i gained 15 lbs and I have a healthy diet. My TSH level was a 14.2 last month and my doctor said that since I got sick a 3 days later, with something that seemed like strep (rapid tested negatiive) it could have contributed to my high level so he wanted me to wait another month then get another blood test. I just got my lab results back and my TSH levels are now a 5.09. Is it normal to change that much? Could something else be wrong with me other than thyroid issues? Also, i take adderall so could that be a factor in any of this? I just really need to know what is wrong with me because it is effecting my performance at school and work and I’m getting deperate.

    • ANSWER:
      Hi Toni. It sounds like you definitely have a thyroid problem. Yes, TSH can change a lot, even from day to day. I’ve had hypothyroidism for years, and mine changes a lot ( even on medication ). If you’re not happy with your doctor, get a second opinion. A lot of doctors tend to let people suffer with thyroid symptoms, because they want to wait to see what happens. The longer you go without treatment, the worse your symptoms will get. Find a doctor that will listen to you about your symptoms, and help you. I went to quite a few s doctors, before i found a decent one. Good luck. Feel better soon :-)

  50. QUESTION:
    I’m having symptoms of low thyroid but my TSH test came back normal?
    Here’s a list of my symptoms:
    -Extreme Vertigo
    -Hair loss
    -Dry Skin
    -Fatigue
    -Irregular menstrual cycle with painful cramps (Period started coming every 2 weeks then turned to spotting before stopping completely)
    -Anxiety
    -Low blood pressure and low pulse
    -Irritability
    -Dry Mouth

    I’ve been seeing a neurologist regarding the vertigo and he diagnosed me with silent migraines and prescribed Topamax, which I weened myself off of the medication because I couldn’t function while taking it. During my testing, my TSH levels were “normal” according to the nurse that called me. She didn’t tell me what the exact number was. I had vestibular testing done as well and that came back fine. I’ve been having these problems since June and it’s been debilitating. Could I still have problems with hypothyroidism even though my TSH came back normal? I feel like my symptoms are all hormone related.

    Other medical problems that I suffer from are Interstitial Cystitis, which I’m in remission from and no longer take medication for. I also have a problems with Dumping Syndrome after having my gallbladder removed 2 years ago.

    • ANSWER:
      There are two other tests for hypothyroidism your doctor should do. Ask to be tested for T3 and T4, which are not normally done on a typical thyroid test, and may provide the missing link. Your symptoms definitely indicate low thyroid function, even though the TSH test came out normal. I went through the same thing recently; normal TSH and low on the other two tests.