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Tests to request for Hypothyroidism?

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Old 12-22-2012, 02:10 PM   #1
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Tests to request for Hypothyroidism?

Thanks to this board, I am finally beginning to take charge of my thyroid education. I was diagnosed 10 years ago as hypothroid & have felt fine on 125 mcg of levothyroxine. Over the years, the dr.s have tried lowering my dose only to find that I crash pretty quickly. I have been on 112 mcg for about a month now & feeling hypo, but not as bad as in the past. My current dr. will only order the tsh test since he says that is the only one that matters. I followed the advice given on this board & contacted a local pharmacist to get a list of possible dr.s (ones that prescribe something besides levothyroxine) He was amazingly nice & helpful & I will hopefully have an appointment with a new dr. after the holidays. Since I don't have any current test results- last test in June & only the tsh- I was considering going to the local lab & getting a panel of tests to give the dr. something to look at. They offer pretty much everything & I have copied the most comprehensive thyroid test group they offer (only $269- I've been paying $90 from the same lab for just the tsh!). What do you think?

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Lipid panel (cholesterol, HDL, LDL, the risk ratio, triglycerides)
Complete Blood Count (CBC's)
Fluids and Electrolytes
Thyroid Panel w/TSH
Liver Panel
Kidney Panel
Glucose (Diabetes)
Mineral and Bone

T3, Free: This test is used to evaluate thyroid function. It is primarily used to diagnose hyperthyroidism. It is also used to assess abnormal binding protein disorders and to monitor thyroid replacement and suppressive therapy.

T4, Free: This test is used to evaluate thyroid function in individuals who may have protein abnormalities that could affect total T4 levels. It is used to evaluate thyroid function and monitor replacement and suppressive therapy.

Total T3: Increased T3 often occurs in hyperthyroidism, but in approximately 5% of cases only T3 is elevated, “T3 toxicosis.”

Reverse T3: Reverse-T3 does not stimulate metabolism. It is produced as a way to help clear some T4 from the body.

Thyroid Peroxidase (TPO) Antibody: The TPO gene provides instructions for making an enzyme called thyroid peroxidase. This enzyme plays a central role in the function of the thyroid gland. Thyroid peroxidase assists the chemical reaction that adds iodine to a protein called thyroglobulin, a critical step in generating thyroid hormones. Thyroid hormones play an important role in regulating growth, brain development, and the rate of chemical reactions in the body (metabolism).

Thyroid Antithyroglobulin Antibody (TAA): The presence of autoantibodies to thyroglobulin can lead to the destruction of the thyroid gland. Such antibodies are more likely to appear after trauma to, or inflammation of, the thyroid gland.

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Old 12-26-2012, 02:51 PM   #2
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Re: Tests to request for Hypothyroidism?

You don't need all those for thyroid diagnosis. TSH, free T4, free T3, TPO Ab, and Tg Ab are all you need.

The risk you take in spending for all those tests is that your MD may not accept them anyway. He probably has his own favorite tests and might disregard for the others. If you have insurance, you might as well let him order the tests he wants so that they'll pay for them instead of paying cash price.

I can't name names, but one popular online lab offers TSH/FT4/FT3 for less than $77. The two antibodies are an additional $120. But I still wouldn't buy them myself unless the MD wants them.
"We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses." Abraham Lincoln

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