Thyroid UK

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.....I am asking for some interpretation of blood test see if anyone can add helpful information. It is for a friend of mine here in Crete who suffers with fatigue and occasional depression. Just have the TFT's at present. Have asked her for the B12 etc. results.

10:1:12 TSH 1.17 11:05:12 0.32 20:05:13 1.02 Range 0.25 - 5.0

FT4 12.52 15.30 14.21 Range 7.70 - 18.80

FT3 3.30 4.75 4.20 Range 3.50 - 8.30

She has been taking 25mcg T3 since last Jan/Feb spread out through the day and stopped taking it before the last test. She has Low blood pressure and a Low white blood count. Her GP here is concerned that she is Hyper in spite of the T3 being at the lower end of the range ?? - but of course it is the TSH that is taking him off course !! Her scan last year was clear. She has also taken Adrenal Support supplements.

It would seem to me that her thyroid is still producing T4 but not converting and not such and important I know once on T3. There were some anti-bodies visible on the first test but well under range.

Have learnt so much since being on this site and I think I am looking for confirmation and re-assurance of my thoughts from others to support my friend.

Thank you for reading..........

7 Replies

I think you might be right Marz. She may not be converting properly as her T3 is at the lower end despite taking T3. This could be due to abnormal cortisol levels. I wonder if this might also be affecting her white blood cell count.

It is ok for her TSH to be low provided her T3 is normal. T3 treatment will artificially lower her TSH, as will low or high cortisol. This will in turn affect conversion of T4 to T3.

There has been recent research that shows that TSH levels to not correspond to thyroid hormone levels in the way it should in hypothyroid patients, hence showing that TSH is pretty much useless once you are hypothyroid.

Of course, there could be other things causing her symptoms as well but I do think she is undermedicated and possibly suffering from adrenal issues. Her TSH will probably need to be well under 1 for her to feel well, and possibly suppressed which is fine provided T3 is normal. Dr Toft says this in his book and, considering how backward the UK is in thyroid treatment, I think this is significant. Perhaps this might help her in her discussions with her GP?

I hope this helps a little and that she can convince her GP she needs an increase in T3.

Carolyn x

Marz in reply to PinkNinja

Thank you Carolyn for your prompt and informative reply. Have now forwarded it to my friend and await her reply. She can easily increase her dose as we can buy T3 without a prescription. Unfortunately she says she can smell it coming out of her pores when she increases and doesn't like it ! Now is that Hypo or Adrenal ? :-)

Thanks again and we will journey in hope - I just do not want her doc taking her down avenues that are not correct. Am hoping the wisdom on this forum will help her.

PinkNinja in reply to Marz

It could be adrenals or it could be from being hypo for a long time (I had trouble going up to 4 grains and I think it was because my body was used to being hypo). It could also be iron, folate or B12 that is the problem.

She may find she needs to increase by a very small amount each time, say 1/4 tablet. I find that, if I don't tolerate an increase, going back to my previous dose and trying again a few weeks later often works. I'm sure this is because my body is having to adjust to having sensible levels of thyroid hormones again.

I hope she finds the answers :)

Marz in reply to PinkNinja helpful - thank you...M x


Hi Marz


On reading Dr Lowe's link, you will see that he always used a straight dose of T3 for his patients. I myself take NDT and T3 together once per day. This is the explanation of one daily dose of T3

January 30, 2002

Question: I’m a physician who has just begun using T3 in my practice. One thing I’m concerned about is the short half-life of T3. Shouldn’t patients divide their daily dose up and take part of it at least twice each day, or instead use sustained-release T3? It seems that this would allow the effects of T3 to continue through the day rather than stop midway or in the evening?

Dr. Lowe: The short time that T3 is in the circulating blood isn’t the limit of its beneficial effects on the body. When T3 binds to T3-receptors on genes, the binding regulates the transcription of mRNAs, and the mRNAs are later translated into proteins. The transcription and translation initiated by the binding of T3 to T3-receptors occur in waves, and these waves far outlast the T3 that started them at the chromosomes. Moreover, the newly synthesized proteins themselves far outlast the transcription and translation. As a result, a single dose of T3 will be long gone from the patient's system before he or she experiences most of the benefits of that dose—a molecular and metabolic yield that may smoothly spread out over one to three days. The "rocky road" ( August 7, 2001

There's lots of useful info on this link.

Another quote:-

Dr. Lowe: With most patients, I use thyroid function tests (TSH, free T3, and free T4) and thyroid antibodies only for a patient’s initial diagnosis. Afterward, I follow the practice, in principal, of Dr. Broda Barnes—that is, measuring tissue effects of particular dosages of thyroid hormone rather than remeasuring TSH, free T3, and free T4 levels.

My reason for this different protocol is simple: the TSH, free T3, and free T4 tell us only how the pituitary and thyroid glands are interacting. Of course, the test levels may also tell us something of the influence of thyroid hormone over the hypothalamus in its secretion of TRH, another hormone that influences the pituitary gland's secretion of TSH.

I am not medically qualified but I think clinical symptoms are more important than the TSH.

Marz in reply to shaws

.....thank you so much Shaws for all the VERY helpful information. Just hope my friend will take the time to read and maybe learn a little something on the way - I did !

Excellent support - thanks....

This is indeed very helpful - maybe I should copy and paste to take to my GP after the next blood test, the first after being on T3 only. Thank you Shaws - and Marz, I hope your friend improves quickly.


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