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Thyroid Disorders Message Board
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Old 09-15-2004, 01:20 PM   #1
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Help with test results, please

Hi alll, new to this board. So glad I found you. I have some confusion Haven't heard that before - eh?

Here are the test results:

Entitled Thyroid Panel

T-3, Uptake 24.6 L (25.0-35.0)
T-4, Total 8.7 (4.5-12.0x)
Free Thyroxine Index 2.14 (1.12-4.20)
TSH 3.41 (0.40-5.5)

Currently taking .05mg levothyroxine. Doc wrote note on test results - Notify - thyroid look normal, no change to therapy. Recheck 3 months.

Hypo for over 25 years. Brain tumor treated with radiation. After serious illness that resulted in coma and hypoxia, which resulted in brain injury - some cognitive problems - serious treatment resistant depression, and fatigue so great I wasn't able to get out of bed. Treated with ritalin, which has helped a great deal with the brain stuff.

Talked with my shrink who said these levels are "not good." He encouraged me to ask my regular doc for more med. Wants to see TSH at 1 or so.

Reg do said she would increase to .075 and retest in 3 months. Am I crazy (well, no need to answer that!).

Questions:
1. will that increase make any appreciable difference?
2. Did I have the right tests?
3. T-3 uptake being marked low....what exactly does that indicate?
4. how long should I wait before retesting?

I took .1 of synthroid for years and felt kind of okay. But then again, I never saw my test results.

Can anyone help me? Thanks so much.

 
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Old 09-15-2004, 03:17 PM   #2
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Gopherhead HB User
Re: Help with test results, please

Quote:
Originally Posted by lillypad
Questions:
1. will that increase make any appreciable difference?
2. Did I have the right tests?
3. T-3 uptake being marked low....what exactly does that indicate?
4. how long should I wait before retesting?
Hi Lilly. I don't know how much help I can be but I'll try

I think your shrink has a better grasp of the situation than your doctor does, to be honest. Those numbers don't look great. And he/she's right that most women feel better with their TSH around 1.

As for the test, none of them are the ones you really need. Ideally you'd want both FT3 and FT4 tested - total T4 doesn't tell you enough about the situation, and TSH really isn't a good indicator once treatement has begun.

T3 Uptake is used to assess the binding capacity of the serum for thyroid hormone. T4 tests measure the concentration of Thyroxine in the serum. This includes both bound and free hormone. Only the free hormone, about 0.05% of the total, is biologically active. Free Thyroxine Index is an old test that has been replaced by Free T4 because it's not specific enough - yours does seem low though.

What's most important is how do you feel? If you're still suffering with symptoms then I'd say your dose is too low.

Nat
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Old 09-15-2004, 03:44 PM   #3
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Re: Help with test results, please

Ask your psychiatrist what he knows about T3 therapy. Brain and mental function is known to markedly improve with the addition of some T3. Some depressions totally resolve with its use.
I would say your dose does need increasing; but even more than that, you would probably benefit from natural Armour thyroid or some Cytomel in addition to your levoT.
Read Dr. Ridha Arem's book, The Thyroid Solution and Dr. Kenneth Blanchard's What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Hypothyroidism for more information.

 
Old 09-15-2004, 04:30 PM   #4
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lillypad HB User
Re: Help with test results, please

Thank you for replying. I feel awful and have for over 2 years. Not enough energy to do much of anything.
Can you please list the tests I should ask for?

I will ask my shrink about T3 therapy. I will also get the reference books you listed. It is like pulling teeth to get my primary to respond!

 
Old 09-16-2004, 06:41 AM   #5
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Re: Help with test results, please

The most important thing to remember is that just because a person possesses a medical degree does not mean he or she knows everything there is to know about the thyroid and its function. Follow your psych's advice to get at least an increase of T4 [but some T3 will still probably be best]. If your primary won't cooperate, I hope you'll find one who does know T4/T3 therapy to be best.

The best tests to monitor thyroid treatment and dosage adjustments are TSH, free T4 (not Total T4 aka T4 aka Thyroxine), and free T3 (not Total T3 or triiodothyronine). The "free" tests directly measure the amount of hormone that is "free" in the bloodstream, unbound to protein, and is therefore immediately usable by the cells.
I wish you all the best... I hope you'll be able to try combination T4/T3 therapy and that it works wonders for you.

 
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