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Old 01-10-2014, 07:01 AM   #1
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Thyroid # Experts- Help? :)

about 6 months ago I completely stopped having monthly cycles. I was as regular as they get prior to that. When I met with the OBGYN, she clearly wanted to do hormone testing due to it just stopping out of the blue and my concern about hair loss (another "new" unwelcomed issue)!

Here are the results I got back:
  • T4, Free (Direct) 1.13 (Range: .82-1.77)
  • Triiodothyronine(T3) 105 (Range: 71-180)
  • Thyroxine (T4) 8.5 (Range: 4.5-12)
  • T3 Uptake 29% (Range: 24-39%)
  • Free Thyroxine Index 2.5 (Range: 1.2-4.9)
  • TSH 3.270 (Range .450-4.5)

Can anyone help me understand? I have done way too much research and this is super new to me...and know there are experts on here who will help me
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Old 01-10-2014, 07:14 AM   #2
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I'm not one of the experts on this board, but my monthly cycles also stopped when I was in my mid 20's (not due to thyroid), but I did develop thyroid disease after menopause. As far as your numbers, your TSH does look a little high pointing to hypothyroid. Looks like your lab is using an older range; I believe the high limit is now around 3. As far as your monthly cycles, have you lost a lot of weight recently? And/or are your exercising a lot? My cycles stopped as a result of a 30-lb weight loss that I couldn't afford....I went from 120 to 90 lbs and became anorexic.....plus I was exercising a lot. After I gained back some weight, my cycle returned. I hope you find some answers.
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Old 01-10-2014, 07:41 AM   #3
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Your TSH is suggesting that you might be becoming hypothyroid (it indicates how hard your thyroid has to be stimulated to produce hormones), but your hormone (T4 T3) levels seems adequate at this time. That is, it would be odd for your symptoms to be thyroid related.

HOWEVER, my own hypothyroidism was diagnosed with labs that 'seemed' normal, and my excellent endo at the time told me that isn't unusual. I was having some very severe symptoms at the time.

So I'd suggest you just consult your doctor about all this because it's very complex when hormones are involved.
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Old 01-10-2014, 04:04 PM   #4
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thanks! i just don't know what all these #'s mean, no matter how much I read....and after reading on here at what point do I "demand" meds or more testing..
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Old 01-10-2014, 04:38 PM   #5
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These tests were ordered by a doctor. What does he/she say about your symptoms now that the labs have been done? You don't need to 'understand' all the numbers; you need to ask the doctor to explain them to you and to give you a diagnosis that addresses your symptoms.

If you're not satisfied with the help (or lack of) that you're getting, you should find another doctor.

But "demanding" meds is, IMO, not a wise thing to do. There's a reason that only licensed physicians can write prescriptions. They have the knowledge and training to assess your needs in terms of Rx.
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Old 01-11-2014, 07:11 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo41 View Post
These tests were ordered by a doctor. What does he/she say about your symptoms now that the labs have been done? You don't need to 'understand' all the numbers; you need to ask the doctor to explain them to you and to give you a diagnosis that addresses your symptoms.

If you're not satisfied with the help (or lack of) that you're getting, you should find another doctor.

But "demanding" meds is, IMO, not a wise thing to do. There's a reason that only licensed physicians can write prescriptions. They have the knowledge and training to assess your needs in terms of Rx.

Yes, they were ordered by a doctor and the doctor said they are fine- no treatment necessary, hence me doing my own research with the numbers.

After reading for years on here about doctors not paying attention to symptoms and not advocating for women who may be "normal" with symptoms, I decided to post for the expert opinions here.

And by "demanding" meds, my question was more for people who have had similar #'s or if anyone see's a number that looks "off" so I could "demand" more testing. Just looking for opinions since losing my menstral cycle and my hair in my mid 30's is all new to me and very hard to handle. I haven't even been on antibiotics since I was 6, I have been very blessed health wise and this is scary.

thanks.
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Old 01-11-2014, 07:45 AM   #7
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It is horrible when you are feeling bad and want answers.
I did some research for myself on what my "optimal" numbers were instead of my "normal" numbers should be. All of your numbers may be in the normal range, but might not be how you will feel the best.
Maybe try googling "optimal thyroid levels" and see if you can find a website where you can graph them.

I honestly don't know much about the ranges, etc. except that my doctor told me that a TSH level of 1 is what she is shooting for with me.
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Old 01-11-2014, 08:30 AM   #8
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Sunflower-

If the OB/GYN considers your thyroid numbers OK, did he/she test any other hormones? How does this doctor explain your lost cycle?

My understanding is that a lost cycle is a issue of concern, so this doctor should be explaining (or exploring) the reasons for this, IMO.

If you want another opinion on your thyroid issues, you'll need to find a good thyroid doctor--always a challenge, as posters here often mention.

The 'shooting' for a TSH of 1 is for those of us already on Rx hormones. Although your TSH is in the hypo range, it can vary day to day, so with your current T4, T3 levels, most doctors that I know would just 'watch' the TSH rather than medicate. Keep in mind that once you begin taking thyroid hormones, it's for life--which is why most doctors are reluctant to begin someone too early.
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Old 01-11-2014, 05:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psmileyf View Post
It is horrible when you are feeling bad and want answers.
I did some research for myself on what my "optimal" numbers were instead of my "normal" numbers should be. All of your numbers may be in the normal range, but might not be how you will feel the best.
Maybe try googling "optimal thyroid levels" and see if you can find a website where you can graph them.

I honestly don't know much about the ranges, etc. except that my doctor told me that a TSH level of 1 is what she is shooting for with me.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo41 View Post
Sunflower-

If the OB/GYN considers your thyroid numbers OK, did he/she test any other hormones? How does this doctor explain your lost cycle?

My understanding is that a lost cycle is a issue of concern, so this doctor should be explaining (or exploring) the reasons for this, IMO.

If you want another opinion on your thyroid issues, you'll need to find a good thyroid doctor--always a challenge, as posters here often mention.

The 'shooting' for a TSH of 1 is for those of us already on Rx hormones. Although your TSH is in the hypo range, it can vary day to day, so with your current T4, T3 levels, most doctors that I know would just 'watch' the TSH rather than medicate. Keep in mind that once you begin taking thyroid hormones, it's for life--which is why most doctors are reluctant to begin someone too early.
thank you so much!

What is the best way to find an good endo in my area? Google for reviews?
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Old 01-12-2014, 12:57 AM   #10
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Your doctor ran a FT4 and a Total T3. Bad combination. They're not the same at all. A FreeT3 should have been run with it, and if your TotalT3 is that low in the range, I bet your FT3 would be lower in it's range.

1.32 is mid-range for FT4 with that range and you're below that. I run on the lower side of the mid-FT4 range and feel Ok. I run on the upper side on the FT3, like 2/3-3/4 up the range and feel good. It took time to get there. You really need to know what your FT3 is because That's our energy.
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:00 AM   #11
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The only way I know to find a 'good' doctor is to ask friends who may be using an endo (diabetes or thyroid)--but keep in mind that an endo who is great for diabetes may not be good for thyroid.

It's also good if you know someone in the medical profession to ask for a reference. I found my own great doctor via a family friend who is a retired physician (who taught at a major medical school).

Finally, a good source is a local pharmacist. They know who the good doctors are, but this would have to be a pharmacist you know well who is willing to share that information.

Online 'reviews' are another source. Although I got my current endo from a referral, he's listed as one of the top thyroid doctors in my area. Part of the reason is because he gets patients who have been dissatisfied with their previous thyroid care, and they are the ones likely to post reviews.
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Old 01-12-2014, 05:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by watcher513 View Post
Your doctor ran a FT4 and a Total T3. Bad combination. They're not the same at all. A FreeT3 should have been run with it, and if your TotalT3 is that low in the range, I bet your FT3 would be lower in it's range.

1.32 is mid-range for FT4 with that range and you're below that. I run on the lower side of the mid-FT4 range and feel Ok. I run on the upper side on the FT3, like 2/3-3/4 up the range and feel good. It took time to get there. You really need to know what your FT3 is because That's our energy.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo41 View Post
The only way I know to find a 'good' doctor is to ask friends who may be using an endo (diabetes or thyroid)--but keep in mind that an endo who is great for diabetes may not be good for thyroid.

It's also good if you know someone in the medical profession to ask for a reference. I found my own great doctor via a family friend who is a retired physician (who taught at a major medical school).

Finally, a good source is a local pharmacist. They know who the good doctors are, but this would have to be a pharmacist you know well who is willing to share that information.

Online 'reviews' are another source. Although I got my current endo from a referral, he's listed as one of the top thyroid doctors in my area. Part of the reason is because he gets patients who have been dissatisfied with their previous thyroid care, and they are the ones likely to post reviews.
Thank you (again) SO much! I have some calls to make tomorrow. You really helped me get through the weekend and not resort to Dr. Google (too much!)
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