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Help with Lab Levels

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Old 06-10-2005, 11:36 AM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 243
shellshocked HB User
Help with Lab Levels

Can anyone help me understand these latest labs?

TSH, 3rd GEN 0.159 0.3-5.0
Free T4 1.34 0.6-2.0

I'm not sure what the TSH 3rd GEN means----this test was done before I knew enough to ask for the free t3's and t4's.

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Old 06-10-2005, 03:22 PM   #2
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 368
OraEtLabora HB User
Re: Help with Lab Levels

Third Generation assays are more sensitive than the previously used second generation assay. It helps to distinguish between, say, a mildly suppressed TSH and a severely suppressed TSH, which, of course, can determine how hyper the patient is (assuming he is hyper, and not deliberately suppressing the TSH for other reasons). It can be used to monitor deliberately suppressive therapies.

It's just a very sensitive test for TSH - and is based on the (what I believe to be facetious) notion that the TSH is the "best" indicator of thyroid function.

I used to do thyroid tests in my pre "got-so-sick-I-couldn't-work-anymore" days. Ironically, I never did any tests on myself. One day, just before I quit working due to profound disability, (mis-diagnosed, of course), I was doing anti-thyroid antibodies and needed another specimen to use as a control I started to ask a co-worker if she would draw my blood, so I could use it. I was so sick even then, and curious, of course, if that was my problem. But, not wanting to bother her, I used a sample that was in another rack. I've often thought back to that moment, and wondered what my life would have been like had I done that test on myself (which I now know would have been positive). I might have saved myself 16 years of profound suffering....

Are you still having hypo symptoms?

Old 06-10-2005, 03:35 PM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Georgia
Posts: 424
SarahF HB User
Re: Help with Lab Levels

Your T4 is right at mid-range. If you are still feeling hypo you may need, like many of us, to have your T4 in the upper third to fourth of the range.

Having the T3 numbers would help to see if you convert T4 to T3 properly. If you don't, your T3 will be lower in the range relative to T4. They should be at about the same place.

Old 06-10-2005, 05:16 PM   #4
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 243
shellshocked HB User
Re: Help with Lab Levels

Thanks Ora---Thanks! That helps me with another piece of this amazing puzzle.
Yes, I'm still having hypo symptoms---but the doctors don't want to up my dose. The minute I start feeling good, they drop the dose.
I know what it feels like to be hyper---and I don't want that---what I want is the right combo of meds that will get me there. I've been experiencing for a couple of years what you've been going through for so much longer. I'm so sorry!

Thanks Sarah---
I appreciate you sharing what my range is. Synthroid suddenly stopped working for me---it kind of did before, and the doc upped it from 150 to 175---and I was good for about 6 months before I started going "hyper".
I gotta find those T3 numbers. I'm looking into having a test done for myself---no docs involved. I appreciate you sharing with me how and where the numbers should be in relationship to one another.

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