I'm trying to wrap my head around my blood test results. I talk to my doctor tomorrow, and he's very good and will listen to my concerns, but I like to go in armed with knowledge so I can push for the right things if I need to.
For family history, my mother has hypothyroidism -- I know it's not Hashimoto's and that it was initially very bad about 30 years ago and has been somewhat stable with meds lately, but that's about all I know about it.
Symptoms that have appeared over the past 6-8 months:
-somewhat low body temperature (36.1 C)
-fairly low pulse (46 bpm resting) & blood pressure (102/60) (I'm a runner, so maybe this isn't as alarming as in someone inactive?)
-bad water retention, especially in the morning
-weight -- have been maintaining for a few years and it's been more of a fight lately to keep it steady
-SO VERY TIRED
-unusually dry skin
-lots of aches and pains
-menstrual cycles getting longer, more painful & irregular
**Sep 2011 test results**
TSH 5.48 mU/L (lab range 0.30 - 5.50)
Free T4 18 pmol/L (lab range 11-22)
Thyroperoxidase Ab 26 kU/L (lab range < 35)
**Jan 2011 test results**
TSH 5.76 mU/L (lab range 0.30 - 5.50)
Free T4 17 pmol/L (lab range 11-22)
I'm not on any medication for my thyroid at this point.
I've been reading up on it and my best guess is that I'm technically "subclinical," but I don't know if I should be insisting on treatment at this point or just seeing what happens or what. Anything I should be bringing up with my doctor about this? If anyone can share their wisdom with me about this topic, I will be very grateful!
Hi Kunibob, I'm new too, so please forgive my lack of my knowledge. My understanding, so far, is that Free T3 is an important measurement. I believe it is the hormone which actively works on our cells, giving them energy. So, even though your FT4 results may technically be "within lab range," T4 may not be converting to T3 the way it should, which could be why you are feeling symptoms of lethargy etc. Hope someone will correct me if I am wrong. My FT4 was 0.9 ng/dL(0.9-2). Not sure how that translates to pmol/L. Hope you get some helpful responses- I've been waiting all day for one! ;-)
The Following User Says Thank You to jaymee456 For This Useful Post: kunibob (02-08-2012)
Welcome to the board although I'm sorry for the reason you're here.
You should push treatment indeed. TSH is elevated, it might not seem too far our of range, but the ranges are too broad, these days the standards are >3 or 2.5 (depends) treatment should be considered.
TSH is thyroid stimulating hormone, produced by the pituitary gland. it's elevated because there is unsufficient thyroid hormone available for your body's needs.
you also want to have your FT3 checked and thyroid antibodies to see whether it's hashimoto (antiThyroglobuline and antiTPO)
The Following User Says Thank You to lisa789 For This Useful Post: kunibob (02-08-2012)
Thanks for the feedback, everyone! Armed with your information, I had my appointment yesterday and pushed pretty hard. My doctor was hesitant to start treatment because of the normal FT4 and negative antibodies, and apparently FT3 tests aren't done here unless it's suspected hyper, not hypo. My other medical history came around to bite me here, too, because he pointed out that all of my symptoms could be explained by other things flaring up, and thus he was reluctant to put me on meds if this "subclinical" hypothyroidism isn't actually what's causing the symptoms. That's fair enough, I suppose.
We agreed on a retest in 3 months to see how the levels and my symptoms are doing. I'll absolutely follow up with him sooner if these symptoms become debilitating.
Kind of frustrated -- my doctor is generally EXCELLENT, and this is the first time we haven't seen eye-to-eye. Ah, well. Three months isn't so long, and I can understand him being hesitant what with our outdated lab ranges here. :S
Sometimes the pituitary has to work harder to keep you euthyroid.
but these tfts tests can be a very poor at diagnosing thyroid problems as in my case they were all normal but my heart rate near 200bpm the next test showed hyperthyroid.
You seem to be hypothyroid judging by your symptoms and elevated TSH.
Kunibob, I was wondering if you wouldn't mind sharing your doctor's/ your theories on what could be causing the elevated TSH if your antibody screen was negative. I tested negative for both antibodies but have a sustained TSH between 2.5-3 and FT4 of 0.9 (0.9-2).
Low progesterone?? Low vit D?