Follow-up to 'A Funny Thing Happened at the Doctor's'

Some of you may remember that when I went to my GP surgery recently for an ECG, the nurse doing it told me she was worried about her thyroid, as she put on a lot of weight suddenly last year, then from March this year she lost a lot of weight, and I advised her to have a thyroid function test including T3 and antibodies.

Surprise, surprise! She is SO relieved that it's just the menopause. According to her GP. Yeah, right. She's just put on a stone in the last month.

Did he do an antibody test? No.

Did he test the T4 and T3? No.

What did he test, then? The TSH.

And what was it? Normal.

(Sound familiar?)

How does he know it's the menopause, then? Because it's not my thyroid.

Now, this is a practice nurse who spends all day taking blood, doing ECGs and suchlike. And she happily takes that from her own GP. In spite of our conversation about what happens when you think you have a thyroid problem etc, etc, etc.

I feel very sad for her.

19 Replies

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  • It never ceases to amaze me that so many people are prepared to believe that they are well because their blood tests are "normal", so the doctor assures them they are well despite the fact that they still feel awful! I have several friends like this. I used to feel really responsible for them, but I have now learned to step away till they come back to me, which I know they eventually will.

    Jane x x

  • ...me too Jane - it all gets so frustrating. It surprises me that people do not listen to you with all your experience....indicates just how blind they are. Something keeps me on the case - not sure what it is ? :-) Just had a friend here for coffee-swim-snack-glass of wine and her hubby has had heart bypass surgery. He was diagnosed with ME some 30 years ago and simply does not want to hear anything about Thyroid ! Have just shown her the book on Amazon called - Thyroid and Heart Failure - expensive but think I will buy a second hand one. She knows I am well informed - thanks to this forum - but knows he does not want to know ! x

  • It is disturbing that in this day and age so much is being swept under the carpet. I know what you mean about responsibility, but you are right, we have to say our say and walk away.

  • ..just keep plugging away ! Chinese torture springs to mind - drip drip drip and eventually they will snap !! I think it is to do with your mind and how open you are as a person. When walking I think those of us that want to keep going to see around the next bend will always try and find a way to optimal health. I think T4/T3 should be broadcast as a prevention treatment that prevents you from having age related illnesses - maybe that would change the mindset of people.

    It's one of the reasons sun preps are pedalled with such success as they always mention it prevents aging of the skin ! All part of the - 'stay young for ever culture '.....I live in hope ! x

  • We have to keep going, don't we, because it's not just our own quality of life, it's that of thousands of others.

    We come from so many different situations, different levels of income, and lifestyles, but we have one thing in common, we have to fight for any kind of life. That one things unites us all.

  • We do. I'm becoming quite an activist online. It's a way of channelling my anger.

  • I feel sorry for her if she has to suffer with thyroid problems like we do and which could be alleviated if treated BUT how wonderful to lead a simple life where you can happily accept what the doc says and not spend every moment having to seek your own solution, monitor your own health and spend a fortune on supplements etc etc..

    Think of all the energy saved!

  • I know what you mean. There have been times when I just wanted to go to bed and just not bother to wake up, it was all such hard work fighting. It would be so easy to give up, because the one thing we don't have is energy and the will to fight.

    That's what TUK is for, so we can encourage each other to keep trying, keep fighting, and never give up.

    Marie XX

  • just goes to prove that if these so called 'health professionals ' that are supposed to be qualified and in the 'know' treat themselves ----- how the heck can they correctly treat the rest of us ????? but I live in hope !!!!! --- hold on ive just seen a flock of them flying pigs fly past my window !!!!!!!!!!

  • They just went past mine. They must be fast flyers.

    Marie XX

  • I will lay some very good odds that them there flying pigs don't suffer from thyroid problems though ----- coz they are damned fast on the wing !!!!!!

  • Doctors are very good at convincing us that we 'are just getting old' rather than us questioning results!! My gp (now retired) had no idea what the reference ranges were for any thyroid blood tests till I refused to be diagnosed by a lab tech!!

  • Good for you! Hypothyroidism can make us too willing to just take no for an answer.

    Marie XX

  • When my husband died I had to stand in the dock at his inquest and explain how to interpret a TSH test to the coroner who was herself a qualified doctor. I think that was when I finally grasped the fact that if I didn't take charge of the fight for my daughter's health myself she was going to go the same way as my husband. Jane x

  • Many years ago I went to see my then GP( now retired) because I was feeling unwell and I asked if my symptoms could be menopausal? I was promptly told that your menopause is the day your periods stop!!

    When I later asked him for a blood test for my thyroid it came back normal! I walked up the road crying ,wondering how low I had to get before I would get some help.

    Ten years and two more blood tests later my present GP finally decided I needed some thyroxine 50 mcgs which I then took for a further ten years. It 's only since finding Thyroid UK that things are improving and my meds increased. I'm finally getting the help from my GP at the age of 72yrs that I needed probably twenty years ago!!

    Living in an age where life is moving at such a fast pace that we can hardly keep up with it,why oh why is it such a continuous struggle to bring the recognition and management of thyroid problems into the 21st century.

  • First GP obviously 'old school'! I despair when I realise that treatment for thyroid problems really has not changed whether it be over or under, apart from two notable things which are closely connected: synthetic T4 and the TSH test. And they could neither be called improvements in anyone's book.

    Marie XX

  • I wish I could 'like' every one of these comments!

  • Me too.

  • I really feel sometimes you have to take what action you can and put your foot down!! These days I reckon I know more than the average GP and run rings round my endo when he is daft enough to challenge me!!

    Remember he only person who will fight for your health and wellbeing is yourself, so do not let ANY doctor dictate to you when you know how you feel!! No doctor can if you do not agree so lets see some disagreeing with doctors!! They might have trained for 5 or 6 years but WE have to live with it!!

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