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  • Possible Thyroid Disorder

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    Old 07-05-2017, 12:06 PM   #1
    MPA26
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    Possible Thyroid Disorder

    I am getting lab work done next week and I have a doctor appointment on July 25th, but I was hoping to get some insight before then. I have always been a small person fluctuating between 115-120 lbs. Since April I have gained 10 lbs. I haven't changed anything as far as diet and exercise go. I am also tired all the time which really isnt anything unusual but still annoying just the same. I have also noticed that when I brush my hair a lot more is ending up on the brush than it used to. I read online that this can be related to my thyroid. I do have a lot of thyroid conditions that run in my family so its a possibility, but I just had my TSH levels checked in October 2016 and it was 1.390 which is normal, but this is the only thyroid level that was checked. Back in 2015, my TSH was 0.92 normal, T3 0.87 normal and T4 10.9 which is high but nothing was ever said to me about it. I just noticed this today when I went on the labcorp website and saw it. I guess my question is, do you think this is likely from my thyroid since it was just normal in October? I have every symptom so to me it seems like that has to be it. Also, if my TSH comes back normal does that mean everything is definitely fine or should I push for more testing? Anything that you could tell me to help would be great!

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    Old 07-06-2017, 01:26 PM   #2
    midwest1
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    Re: Possible Thyroid Disorder

    TSH isn't normal simply by being within the lab's reference range. Individuals have their own "normal". If yours used to be .9 or thereabouts, and it now runs consistently close to 1.4, it's no longer "normal" for you. That would mean your free T4 has fallen from your particular "normal", and thus no longer fills your thyroid hormone needs. That would produce myriad symptoms such as yours.

    I suspect that, if your doctor is like the average Dr. Doe, he'll look at the TSH within range alone and pronounce your thyroid healthy. Don't be so quick to accept the verdict. TSH is derfinitely not the whole story, no matter what they teach in med school.

    Try to make sure you have your free levels of T4 and T3 measured, not the total levels. And it might be useful to have TPO and Tg antibodies run as well.

    Let us know what happens.
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    Last edited by midwest1; 07-06-2017 at 01:28 PM.

     
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    Old 07-06-2017, 01:42 PM   #3
    MPA26
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    Re: Possible Thyroid Disorder

    Thank you for the reply! That makes sense that if my levels are moving around even if its still technically in the normal range its still not what my body is used to. I guess my next question then would be is it possible to get a doctor to treat for hypothyroidism if technically you are in a normal range? Has anyone had any luck with that?

     
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    Old 07-07-2017, 10:00 AM   #4
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    Re: Possible Thyroid Disorder

    Many, if not most, MDs are strict, by-the-book TSH watchers who believe than any TSH level within the range is fine. But for any lab test, defining normalcy to all levels within the range is the same as saying a person can wear any shoe size within the standard size range. It's really absurd.

    The fact is that, almost everyone who gets a diagnosis still has TSH within range. I've seen it hundreds of times right here in this forum. Almost no one's TSH rises above range, nor does their T4 and T3 fall below range before they start treatment.

    Then... TSH is a pituitary hormone, not a thyroid one. Since T4 and T3 can be easily and accurately measured, it's beyond comprehension why they insist that TSH is the gold standard marker of thyroid health. When free T4 and/or free T3 fall below the lab median, most people have at least a few thyroid-related symptoms. T4 and T3 can fall below optimum long before TSH rises above range. Those are facts that mainstream medicine continues to ignore.

    At age 52, I was such a healthy woman that I didn't even have a primary doctor. But I began having oddball symptoms other than the classic thyroid ones. The most important of these was episodic chest pressure and weakness that I couldn't ignore. So I found a GP who, without any tests at all, wanted to put me on BP and cholesterol meds. He shrugged or explained away all the other odd symptoms and left it at that. I didn't want his meds, so I began researching for myself and found that all of my problems could be explained by low thyroid. So I went to him and asked for a screening TSH. He actually refused... Made me livid. I insisted. It came back at 4.86, barely shy of the upper range limit. He adamantly refused thyroid med, saying none of my problems could possible be related. So I sought the advice of an endocrinologist who disagreed with him and started treatment. [For the record, I don't recommend endos for hypothyroidism treatment. Most people don't have the success I did getting a diagnosis from them. I got lucky.]
    It's a complicated story from that point ... She didn't ultimately work out. But I found a third doctor who set things straight with the right treatment. That was 13 years ago.

    I'm telling you my story so you know that there are doctors who understand this stuff better than most. It's not always easy to find treatment with in-range numbers, but with persistence, it should be possible. If your FT4/T3 come back below lab median, and you're told that's perfectly fine, pursue the issue with as many MDs as it takes to get at least a trial of thyroid hormone.
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    Last edited by midwest1; 07-07-2017 at 10:05 AM.

     
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    Old 07-07-2017, 11:39 AM   #5
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    Re: Possible Thyroid Disorder

    Dear MPA26,

    There are likely thousands upon thousands of us that found doctors or Nurse Practitioners that prescribe trial doses of thyroid hormone replacement to see if it alleviates low thyroid symptoms. I am just one of those blessed people, and I too had to learn for myself. I was desperately ill from too low thyroid and went through the same runaround.

    In my experience, not every time, but endos can be the worst about thyroid. Usually they didn't bother to explore that field and focused on diabetics where the money is at. Many doctors arrogantly act like the TSH is the one golden test, and do so out of utter ignorance. It simply is not true. Low thyroid is so common it should be one of the first deficiencies suspected, since thyroid affects everything about the body. If we take too much thyroid those symptoms are classic and easily remedied (take less or no thyroid hormone). The needless suffering is disgusting.

    The easiest way to get proper thyroid care is to see a Naturopath physician, or talk to managers of regular pharmacies or compounding pharmacies and ask if they will give you names of doctors that prescribe natural thyroid or hormones. I do that when I move to a new area, with great results.
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    Last edited by yayagirl; 07-07-2017 at 11:42 AM.

     
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    Old 07-14-2017, 07:03 AM   #6
    MPA26
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    Re: Possible Thyroid Disorder

    Ok I havent seen my doctor yet, but I got my lab results. My TSH was 1.110 and free T4 was 1.22 so I guess thats normal. I dont know whats wrong with me. Everything else on my labwork came back fine too except a possible UTI but it was more than likely just a contaminated specimen. I'm at a loss now.

     
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    Old 07-14-2017, 08:43 AM   #7
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    Re: Possible Thyroid Disorder

    Low ferritin can produce many of the same symptoms that low thyroid does. If you haven't had it checked, you should. Not just iron stores, but ferritin, which is the carrier protein for iron.

    One thing more I'll tell you... Falling hair does not come from depression. Beware of that diagnosis at this stage. Far too many MDs will whip out their script pads to order anti-depressant or anti-anxiety meds without even trying to get to the bottom of physical symptoms.

    I hope you'll figure it out and feel better soon.
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