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Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?


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Old 10-13-2011, 08:19 AM   #1
loria29
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Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

I'm so new to the world of guessing if and/or what is going on with my thyroid. I'm going for a retest today. I thought surely it was a lab error because one test indicated a high level and the other test indicated a low level. I was surprised to hear that this can indicate actual thyroid disease.

Has anyone else had mixed results like that and had to be treated for it?

 
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Old 10-13-2011, 08:22 AM   #2
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

what was high and what was low? the normal hypothyroid pattern of test results is high TSH and low FT3 and/or FT4. Hyperthyroidism would have the reverse pattern.

 
Old 10-13-2011, 08:32 AM   #3
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

Actually you just gave me something to ask about--what kind of test and their actual results--when I go back today. Thanks so much for your quick reply, Hannah 31.

My mother has hypothyroidism. Is it true there's a strong hereditary component?

 
Old 10-13-2011, 08:46 AM   #4
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

What level did you have checked? If it was TSH, that level can vary throughout the day.

And, truly, TSH is not a good indicator of thyroid function. It is a pituitary hormone and, if a person has thyroid disease, the cause is almost always autoimmune and that can skew the TSH results.

If you'd like an accurate picture of your thyroid function, it would be best to have the actual circulating thyroid hormone levels checked. Those are:

FreeT4 (T4 or thyroxine, free, direct)
FreeT3 (tri-iodothyronine, free, serum)

Feel free to post the results here (with ranges since they vary from lab to lab) and we'll show you how to interpret them.

And, yes, there is a genetic component to thyroid disease and it is also gender-based (females more likely to have it).
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Last edited by sammy64; 10-13-2011 at 08:47 AM.

 
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Old 10-13-2011, 08:53 AM   #5
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

I will definitely post the results of the initial tests today. Thank you so much. I will request that those tests be considered this time if they weren't last time.

 
Old 10-13-2011, 11:14 AM   #6
loria29
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Question Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

Here were my results from my initial thyroid check with the lab ranges:
T4 = 15.80 (4.5-10.9)
T3 = 18 (22.5-37.0)
TSH = 4.91 (0.55-4.78)

What do think?

 
Old 10-13-2011, 12:07 PM   #7
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

Unfortunately, your doctor didn't run the best tests. Those "plain" (vs. "free") T4 & T3 results are often falsely elevated since the "plain" tests measure both available hormone and hormone that is bound to proteins and not usable by the body. There's no way to determine how much of that T4 or T3 is actually usable ("free").

But, TSH > 2.0 is suspect for hypothyroidism.

Couple that with your below-range T3 result and you are hypothyroid.

I see that your T4 result is above-range and that might confuse a doctor that isn't too knowledgeable about thyroid. Please remember that the "plain" T4 test you had is falsely elevated.

It's entirely possible that your FreeT4 result might be very well in-range or even too low but, the fact that your TSH is so high and your T3 is below-range tells us that your body's needs for thyroid hormone aren't being met.

Do you have any symptoms?

The Thyroid Information section on here has a pretty comprehensive list.....not everyone has every symptom but, it's helpful when trying to identify symptoms
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Last edited by sammy64; 10-13-2011 at 12:51 PM.

 
Old 10-13-2011, 12:40 PM   #8
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

I most definitely have symptoms. Extreme fatigue (after work, I go and lay in my bed until it’s time for sleep), mother has hypothyroidism, weight gain despite diet, shortness of breath, and joint pain. By far, the fatigue is the worst part but the weight gain is so discouraging. I have been treated for depression for years and years and it's seems to have gotten worse lately.

I am concerned about my doctor's and/or nurses' knowledge. I got a copy of the test results and beside the results, there was a question mark and a note to retest.

Is there a difference in testing T3 and T3 uptake?

 
Old 10-13-2011, 12:47 PM   #9
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

Okay, upon closer examination of the results, I see that there is a T7 reslult of 2.8 that's in the normal range (1.3-4.8). I read somewehre that T7 is a measure of free T4...?

 
Old 10-13-2011, 12:55 PM   #10
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

T3 uptake and T7 are both calculations.

Why do calculations when there are tests available that can measure actual levels?

Thyroid-savvy doctors know to measure the FreeT4 and FreeT3 levels.

Unfortunately, many doctors just don't know how to diagnose/treat thyroid disease.

(Depression is a common early symptom of hypothyroidism.....)
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:03 PM   #11
loria29
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

A second round of tests had similar findings. Now the dr says my thyroid is inflamed and is referring me to a specialist. Should I be worried?

 
Old 12-02-2011, 12:46 PM   #12
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Re: Mixed Thyroid Results-Lab Error or possibly something wrong?

Only if the specialist doesn't recognize the obvious.
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