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Help with thyroid numbers please :)

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  • Help with thyroid numbers please :)

    I just got labs back from a couple of weeks ago....

    TSH 1.64
    TPO thyroid antibodies 192
    Free T4 0.6
    My new doctor said she doesn't test for T3 unless you have hyperthyroidism.

    Three months prior to this my TSH was 1.1, T4 1.09, and T3 1.2
    And the 3 months prior to that my TSH was 1.4, T4 1.06 and T3 1.3

    So does it look like my thyroid numbers are getting worse? I'm a little confused because doctors don't always explain thyroid issues very well.

    I'm on 50 mcg of synthroid. I eat 2-3 brazil nuts a day. I get iodine from sea vegetables or kelp granules usually daily.

  • #2
    What are the ranges for each hormone quoted as 'normal' from the pathology lab doing your blood tests?
    Hard to tell without that...

    Also how to do you feel? Are you tired? Lethargic? Gaining weight? Losing hair/eyebrows? Brittle nails? etc.?

    Synthroid works pefectly well for some people, not so good for others...but I would go on how you are feeling physically and mentally as opposed to your blood work.


    Originally posted by brookesam View Post
    I just got labs back from a couple of weeks ago....

    TSH 1.64
    TPO thyroid antibodies 192
    Free T4 0.6
    My new doctor said she doesn't test for T3 unless you have hyperthyroidism.

    Three months prior to this my TSH was 1.1, T4 1.09, and T3 1.2
    And the 3 months prior to that my TSH was 1.4, T4 1.06 and T3 1.3

    So does it look like my thyroid numbers are getting worse? I'm a little confused because doctors don't always explain thyroid issues very well.

    I'm on 50 mcg of synthroid. I eat 2-3 brazil nuts a day. I get iodine from sea vegetables or kelp granules usually daily.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for the response!

      The nurse didn't tell me the ranges... I didn't know to ask. I'll see if I can get a print out next week when I go back.

      I have experienced more fatigue and noticed more hair on the bathroom floor the past couple of months, also my nails have been breaking which is new to me. When I first started eating paleo about 8 months ago, my nails were growing stronger and hair growing faster too.
      I told my new doctor this and she switched me to Synthroid from levothyroxine. She said that the generic form of this medication is not very reliable.


      I have felt a little better the past few days... I've been trying to break a little of my "routines.' I felt like my body was getting way to used to everything I do day in and day out, from eating times and exercising at the same time everyday.

      Comment


      • #4
        No worries.You might want to check out Thyroid Mistreatment, Hypothyroidism Scandals, and Thyroid Treatment Problems | Stop The Thyroid Madness for more information, it is one of the best sources for patients unhappy with their current regime. If you aren't feeling better on your synthroid or levothyroxine, then you may need to consider natural thryoid extract, or t3 only supplementation. But this is complicated for two reasons.

        1. Finding a doctor who will listen to you/even consider anything other than t4 and not treat you like an imbecile.
        2. There may be many things going on causing you to not respond to t4, and it takes time and a lot of blood tests etc to figure out what exactly.

        There is a natural thyroid hormone yahoo group and facebook group etc, so if you were to join and post your location someone could probably recommend a local doctor who is alternative thyroid treatment friendly.

        My personal experience: was on t4, but gained about 12kg in a year, and no matter what I did I couldn't/still can't get it off. I tried calorie counting, atkin's, then primal...strict primal as well, but no weight came off. And I am not talking about gaining muscle, shrinking centimeters and no scale change, I am talking zero shape change whatsoever. And I wasn't getting stronger or fitter.

        Anyway, I found a doc who prescribed natural thyroid (NDT), but even that didn't work - I was taking this massive dose (500mg, her max ever prescribed was 320mg, and average was 90-120mg). I was taking this huge dose and it even feeling it, and gained another kilo. So now I am on t3 only - as we think I have thyroid resistance, which basically means that any t4 in my system gets turns to rt3, which blocks the effectiveness of t3 and basically slows metabolism, leads to weight gain etc. I've been on it 8 weeks, so still too early to tell if it's worked...they say the average is 12weeks.

        In my case, I think thyroid resistance is my 'diagnosis' - it can be caused by long term restrictive dieting. This is me - about three years on weight watchers, plus excessive running (6 days a week, including half marathon training etc).

        Other issues can be - adrenal function, potassium/sodium levels, iron levels, sex hormones,...I can't remember what else.

        Comment


        • #5
          Thyroid issues seem to be so complex! I'm going to look into all the information you've listed... thank you!

          Comment


          • #6
            I'll see if I can get a print out next week when I go back.

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi, I'm a longtime lurker and as you can see this is my first post. But since I'm working on my messed up thyroid and looking at your numbers I'd like to remark, if I may..( I really don't want to cause panic, I'm still figuring thyroid things out, so..)
              Here goes:
              You have a pretty high count of antibodies, if ones simply hypothyroid, there's usually a very low or no antibody-count.
              A count this high points to a thyroid-related autoimmune-disease like Graves, Hashimoto (that's what I have) or the like.
              Was there an ultrasound done? Do you know the size of your thyroid?
              I'm no doctor, so matbe you should read up on symptoms of this stuff..
              Just a quick info about Hashimoto: yournTSH should rather be suppressed than in the normal range, meaning more around 0.4 or with whatever YOU feel normal..so if this really is the case, your TSH is still wayyy too high for you to feel well, just sayin..
              Again, I'm no doctor an I REALLY don't want to worry/scare you but since it took a year of feeling absolutely horrible until someone thought of checking this, I figured you might appreciate a heads up..
              All the best for you!

              Comment


              • #8
                If you're having symptoms of thyroid issues, make sure you get your T3 levels checked as well, including getting your reverse T3 ratio calculated. If your endo won't do this, find one who does.

                I just ran into this issue where I believe I have this thyroid resistance. I've been on T4 only for years but hit a huge plateau after losing 175 pounds and couldn't figure out why. All my numbers, including T3 look in range, but my ratio is low which means I have too much reverse T3. (Go check out stopthethyroidmadness website). This explains why I've been having all the usual thyroid symptoms (fatigue, dry skin, cold hands and feet, sensitivity to cold).

                That said, TSH might fluctuate a bit up and down. But don't accept that "every thing is in range" if you're still having symptoms, especially if you're only on T4.

                And don't go too low in carbs either. I think that has been part of my problem as I was VLC (30 net) for years while losing weight. I'm currently trying to heal things by a diet break/more carbs while I shop around for a better endo since mine doesn't want to deal with the T3 issues either.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Shamrock View Post
                  Hi, I'm a longtime lurker and as you can see this is my first post. But since I'm working on my messed up thyroid and looking at your numbers I'd like to remark, if I may..( I really don't want to cause panic, I'm still figuring thyroid things out, so..)
                  Here goes:
                  You have a pretty high count of antibodies, if ones simply hypothyroid, there's usually a very low or no antibody-count.
                  A count this high points to a thyroid-related autoimmune-disease like Graves, Hashimoto (that's what I have) or the like.
                  Was there an ultrasound done? Do you know the size of your thyroid?
                  I'm no doctor, so matbe you should read up on symptoms of this stuff..
                  Just a quick info about Hashimoto: yournTSH should rather be suppressed than in the normal range, meaning more around 0.4 or with whatever YOU feel normal..so if this really is the case, your TSH is still wayyy too high for you to feel well, just sayin..
                  Again, I'm no doctor an I REALLY don't want to worry/scare you but since it took a year of feeling absolutely horrible until someone thought of checking this, I figured you might appreciate a heads up..
                  All the best for you!
                  When I brought up thyroid to my new endo she just blew over everything and said that swapping syntroid for the generic levothoroxine would make the difference and I should be able to tell with in a couple of months. She wouldn't even check T3 so I know there's no way she'd do an ultrasound. Before leaving the room she said something like, "you're skinny, don't worry about it."
                  Really?! Thank you doctor for saying I'm skinny but I don't feel good. Needless to say, I'm not very happy with this new doctor so I'm back to the drawing board for an endocrinologist.
                  Thanks for the heads up!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ivelosttheweight View Post
                    If you're having symptoms of thyroid issues, make sure you get your T3 levels checked as well, including getting your reverse T3 ratio calculated. If your endo won't do this, find one who does.

                    I just ran into this issue where I believe I have this thyroid resistance. I've been on T4 only for years but hit a huge plateau after losing 175 pounds and couldn't figure out why. All my numbers, including T3 look in range, but my ratio is low which means I have too much reverse T3. (Go check out stopthethyroidmadness website). This explains why I've been having all the usual thyroid symptoms (fatigue, dry skin, cold hands and feet, sensitivity to cold).

                    That said, TSH might fluctuate a bit up and down. But don't accept that "every thing is in range" if you're still having symptoms, especially if you're only on T4.

                    And don't go too low in carbs either. I think that has been part of my problem as I was VLC (30 net) for years while losing weight. I'm currently trying to heal things by a diet break/more carbs while I shop around for a better endo since mine doesn't want to deal with the T3 issues either.
                    About the carbs... I have been having anywhere from 30-50 net carbs a day for the last few weeks. I had done this several months ago and then started carb cycling a couple of days a week. I also have type 1 diabetes and eating lower carbs make it somewhat easier to manage blood sugar levels. I was low carb + exercising pretty hard 5 days a week at the time my last thyroid tests were taken. I wonder if that low of carbs contributed to worse thyroid numbers.
                    How are you on carbs now?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I constantly read (on the Internet) that low carb is 'bad' for thyroid. I have Hashimoto's, but I'm also incredibly carb sensitive and eat no more than 20g of carbs daily--and have done so for many years (with a carby day about every 2 months or so). My endo knows this and says that it does not harm my thyroid.

                      As an indication, after I was diagnosed, my meds remained stable for the first 5 years, even though I was eating very low carb the entire time. Surely if there was some slowing of my thyroid, I would have required an increase in dosage? (I'm checked every 4 months).

                      When my T3 tanked a few years ago, and I had to add Cytomel, I asked my endo again about my WOE because I'd 'read' that low carb inhibits conversion of T4 to T3. He told me that conversion problems are 'characteristic' of Hashi's and my WOE was not responsible.

                      I have never seen any scientific evidence that low carb causes any thyroid problems.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by emmie View Post
                        I constantly read (on the Internet) that low carb is 'bad' for thyroid. I have Hashimoto's, but I'm also incredibly carb sensitive and eat no more than 20g of carbs daily--and have done so for many years (with a carby day about every 2 months or so). My endo knows this and says that it does not harm my thyroid.

                        As an indication, after I was diagnosed, my meds remained stable for the first 5 years, even though I was eating very low carb the entire time. Surely if there was some slowing of my thyroid, I would have required an increase in dosage? (I'm checked every 4 months).

                        When my T3 tanked a few years ago, and I had to add Cytomel, I asked my endo again about my WOE because I'd 'read' that low carb inhibits conversion of T4 to T3. He told me that conversion problems are 'characteristic' of Hashi's and my WOE was not responsible.

                        I have never seen any scientific evidence that low carb causes any thyroid problems.
                        Thanks Emmie! Sounds like you have a great endo too!

                        I like eating lower carb. I'm thinking that I might start supplementing with selenium instead of just eating brazil nuts just in case it can cause T3 problems . Do you supplement at all with selenium?

                        How are you doing now with your thyroid?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by brookesam View Post
                          About the carbs... I have been having anywhere from 30-50 net carbs a day for the last few weeks. I had done this several months ago and then started carb cycling a couple of days a week. I also have type 1 diabetes and eating lower carbs make it somewhat easier to manage blood sugar levels. I was low carb + exercising pretty hard 5 days a week at the time my last thyroid tests were taken. I wonder if that low of carbs contributed to worse thyroid numbers.
                          How are you on carbs now?
                          I sat at 30 net carbs for most of my weight loss (175 pounds). I hit a plateau since December of last year with 30 or more pounds to go and have been trying to figure out why. So I added more "lift heavy things" aka weight lifting, etc. to my workouts and immediately, all my thyroid symptoms came back (cold hands/feet, fatigue, dry skin). My usual thyroid tests all looked normal but my endo didn't and hasn't tested T3 and has always kept me on T4 only. When I added more carbs in, I started feeling better and my symptoms lessened.

                          I was never diagnosed with diabetes even at my heaviest weight but I was no doubt heading there fast (signs of insulin resistance).

                          I've been in the 40-60 net range for about 6 months now with up to 100 or so on workout days, then an occasional refeed (that really helped me feel better). Haven't lost any more weight, but haven't gained much either but still have some thyroid symptoms. I finally got my T3 tested by a different doctor and found my T3/rT3 ratio is 9.6 which is suboptimal (should be over 20).

                          Understand that I was also at 30 net carbs and around 1700 calories for over 3 years with no real diet breaks. Not sure if the rT3 issue is due undeareating carbs/calories, due to Hashimotos, or anything else but I'm trying to find a new doctor that might be able to help me figure out where I am and what I need to do next, including supplementing T3 if needed..

                          Right now, I'm taking a diet break to see if I can feel better and improve the rT3 ratio.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I haven't seen any scientific research either, but I've seen/heard tons of anecdotes that very low carb (less than 50g per day, which I don't normally do) leads to symptoms of hypothyroid. Could be related, or it could be something else.

                            I'm having the same issue, my TSH is trending up and my T4 is getting lower. If I have the same issue next time I get bloodwork I'm going to suggest to my doc that we try a different treatment approach. I've been on T4 for years and my TSH has always been at least a little high, and my T3 is usually low. I suspect I'm just a poor converter.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by brookesam View Post
                              About the carbs... I have been having anywhere from 30-50 net carbs a day for the last few weeks. I had done this several months ago and then started carb cycling a couple of days a week. I also have type 1 diabetes and eating lower carbs make it somewhat easier to manage blood sugar levels. I was low carb + exercising pretty hard 5 days a week at the time my last thyroid tests were taken. I wonder if that low of carbs contributed to worse thyroid numbers.
                              How are you on carbs now?
                              My understanding:
                              The possible issue with VLC for some people does not impact the function of the thyroid. It can impact thyroid hormone conversion. Thyroidmanager.org* suggests that people need a minimum of 50 grams/day of glucose for good T4( storage hormone)to T3( active hormone) conversion. With this in mind, ingesting less than 50 grams of carbs/day long term MAY negatively impact conversion.

                              I recall reading somewhere (can't remember where) that an issue with VLC and conversion is person specific- not impacted at all, impacted quickly with VLC, impacted after long term VLC or something in between.

                              That being said, other things can impact conversion as well:
                              1. Not eating enough
                              2. Low selenium. 200mcg/day is needed
                              3. Low Vitamin D
                              4. Low ferritin

                              * Effects of the Environment, Chemicals and Drugs on Thyroid Function – Thyroid Disease Manager
                              scroll down to Nutrition
                              The Non-Thyroidal Illness Syndrome – Thyroid Disease Manager
                              scroll down to Low T3 states

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