Hi. Have been having "hypo" symptoms for the past couple years but labs have been "fine". After reading on my own, I noticed a pattern between my FT4 and TSH that seemed opposite to what is normal. Both my TSH and FT4 numbers were in lower end of range where normal seems to be as one moves down, the other should move up. My TSH has been dropping over 2 years (from high of over 2 to now below one) but my FT4 numbers don't change.
I sought help from an integrative MD who ordered a few more tests to augment previous labs I brought to him. When I saw him again, he agreed my pituitary or hypothalamus may not be working great and suggested we would watch my thyroid and in the meantime he put me on several supplements to restore my vitamin/mineral status because blood work showed I had some issues there as well as a glandular to help my entire endocrine system (adrenal appeared sluggish too). I didn't ask a lot of questions because I was just so happy to find someone who didn't send me away with a Prozac prescription.
Anyway, I was just wondering what others thought about my labs. On paper they are all in normal range. I still don't feel great (tired, hair falling out, etc..) and am not sure if it is thyroid or just bad nutrition status which takes some time to restore.
Thanks in advance for your thoughts.
TSH - .69 (.4 - 5.5)
FT4 - .76 (.5 - 1.5)
FT3 - 3.2 (2.5 - 3.9)
Total T4 - 6.6 (4.5 - 12.5)
Total T3 - 101 (60 - 181)
TPO AB - <10 (<40)
Anti Thyroglobulin AB - <20 (<40)
Oh, blood test also showed my Iodide level was "undetectable". I don't know if this is good or bad, related to iodine and/or the thyroid.
Irisblue, no, not doing adderall anymore. I spent 7 or 8 weeks off it previously and tsh didn't change, in fact it crept down. I'm on several "Biotics Research" products per doctor. Weird names but essentially a multi-vit with added glandulars (all glands - which disgusts me but I just don't read the ingredients anymore), extra B-12/B-1/Folic Acid/B-6, Superoxide Dismutase, SpectraMin drops add to water (mineral supplementation), Rehydration drops add to water (homeopathic), CoreLicro Blend drops (licorice and other herbs), Adaptopath drops (homeopathic for "exhaustion" per the bottle). I've also been given Pregnenolone hormone replacement but I'm afraid to take it because side effects are acne and hair loss of which I already have issues with and don't want more....Also was taken off Dairy due to high Casein (milk protein) antibodies in my blood. Doc did say it can take a long time to restore nutrition status and it's not like other conditions where you take a pill for a few days and are better. Apparently I was having malabsorption issues and didn't know it.
Iodine is needed for thyroid function. Do you use salt that contains iodine? I use Sea salt that contains iodine.
Selenium is also needed (and often low). Take 100 % of the RDA daily.
Have you had your ferritin level tested? That could be contributing to your hair loss. Ferritin is NOT the same as hemeglobin. I had a ferritin level of 15 and my hemeglobin was never below 12. Optimal ferritin is between 70 & 90 (though the lab reports will say as low as 10 is "normal", it's NOT).
I started taking iron & I now have new hair growth I can see at my hair line!
25 years feeling worse every year on Synthroid & 13 months feel good on Armour Thyroid.
I don't use salt - but maybe I should. I've read about benefits of sea salt.
I'll have to check on my selenium intake. My Ferritin has been between 27 and 34 since starting to measure it during the past year. For some reason my doc told me not to take iron supplements. Maybe there is iron in the other things he has me on (the glandulars or herbs)??? I'll have to ask him. My MCH was the only Red Blood Cell value that was out of range (a tad high).
Is there a "typical" female hair loss pattern associated with low ferritin? Mine is all over but more so along the temples which scares me b/c it seems more like genetic balding pattern. But, it did start with a major shed telegen effluvium (confirmed by dermatologist) which is temporary - it's slowed down but not completely stopped.
Congrats on your hair re-growth. Hopefully I'll experience the same one day real soon.
I am going to have everything retested this week including TgAB and Ferritin for the first time. All the other labs will be repeats. My doctor says everything is normal. I just don't FEEL normal. I'll be watching to see what responses you get! Good luck!
First, do you understand the basics of thyroid hormone production? The gland produces mostly T4 and a small amount of T3 (along with other minute amounts of other T hormones). Most of each hormone goes into storage, waiting to be freed from their carrier protein and converted to the active form of T3 which is used by the cells.
You're right that your TSH doesn't mesh with your low FT4.
Your free T3 is the only level that is high-normal; everything else is low-normal. None of this makes a lot of sense. But here's my theory that I'm passing along from whatever source I first heard it. ~
Because your TSH is low-normal, your thyroid isn't getting the message to make enough hormone. Because your total T3/T4 and free T4 are all low while your free T3 is atypically high, it appears that your body is removing as much hormone as it can from the "storage" mode to the "free" mode and converting more than usual to T3. The free T3 is as high as it is because most of the stored T4 is being converted to keep your body going. Eventually, the "store" will go bust and you won't have enough free T3 either.
I'm glad the the integrative doc has a handle on the pituitary/hypothalamus dysfunction possibility. I think you probably do have an issue there. I sort of doubt though, that the supplement/dietary regimen is going to help enough in the long run. If your gland isn't making hormones, vitamins won't replace them. It would be like a diabetic trying to replace insulin with seaweed after the pancreas has failed. Can't be done.
Thanks Midwest. Your theory does make sense. Wonder how long I have until my stores are exhausted... I've just watched my TSH drop and drop over the past 2 years without my FT4 moving. I'm also doubtful the supplement approach will work - will likely be having the "I'm all for supplements but I need meds" conversation at my next visit. I do appreciate yours and others time to share your thoughts.
Hopalong, you do seem to have similar numbers. Good luck with your retesting this week. If those numbers show a similar pattern, you may want to just raise possibility of a secondary hypo issue to your doc. As I mentioned in my first post, I was the one who picked up on my weird pattern and brought it to a new doctors attention - no other doctor in my past had ever suspected a problem since all my numbers were "in range" - although "thyroid" was the first thing that came to mind for all of them based on my symptoms (thus my 5+ thyroid tests in past few years).
Michelle, I have lived in numerous places and with each new doctor I have been tested for "thyroid" based on symptoms. This was the first time testing FT3 and FT4. I will post my results when I get them. I look forward to hearing about your future appointments. Hoppy
Hoppy you should also request a TSI and TRAb be run as well this will allow for the elimination of Graves, Hashi's, and/or hashitoxicosis as well. Just a thought. I recently had everything tested Liver, Thyroid.. but they forgot the TSI and TRAb because there wasn't a prewritten blank to check off. Anyway when my results came back.. it confirmed I had a disorder, but not the exact one.. and I had to go back friday and get blood drawn for the TSI and TRAb. So get the TSI and TRAb run just in case, especially if you TPOAb and TGAb results come back high.
I can not wait for my results to come back in so we can determine if I take after my mom or her next oldest sister, who both had Hashitoxicosis, or the her sister that just has Hashi's or her youngest sister that just has Graves. It takes mainly 3-5 days on antibody tests correct?
If we learn by our mistakes, I am working on one hell of an education.
MG, I had the TPOab test done on a Friday and the results were at the doctor's office on Monday morning. So I am not sure if it takes a few days. But, like me, you went on a Friday....so results should be in Monday. I'll have to wait for the results of the tests I had done (that I paid for myself) and then go from there. Since I ordered the tests online, I ordered everything I could see that was thyroid related. I didn't see TSI or TRab. I am pretty sure my doctor will NOT order those as he says there is not a problem. I am hoping to convince him otherwise so I am loading up on as much data as I can. Hoppy
Last edited by hopalong_too; 08-28-2007 at 07:32 AM.