Do I have under active thyroid

I have always been a healthy person very active and generally on the go all the time. About 4 years ago I had a dramatic weight loss that seemed to happen over night. I just put it down to stress etc. However over the past year and a a half the weight has gone back. And more. I can't exercise as suffer air hunger and panic attacks. I have bald patches in my hair more on one side. My joints are extremely painful and can't explain the fatigue. I am grumpy all the time and have no libido or energy. I could sleep standing up and feel generally very unwell. I have also just been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis ?..

19 Replies

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  • Could be. Have you been tested?

  • You must make blood tests, the only way to know. Sounds a bit like you could have an overactive thyriodgland , but no point in hanging around here to much, see a doctor promptly!

  • Sounds as if you may have Hashimotos - the Auto-immune Thyroid condition. I only think this as RA is also auto-immune. The tests you will need are TSH FT4 FT3 Anti-TPO Anti-TG. The last two are the anti-bodies which may reveal Hashimotos.

    Also you will quite possibly be LOW in Ferritin - Folate - Iron - B12 - VitD. They too need to be tested and should be towards the top of their ranges.

    When you have any tests done ask for copies of the results with ranges and post again for people to comment.

    Lots of information around about Hashimotos - look under Browse by Category on the right of this page and also on the main Thyroid UK website.

    Gut health ? How is that ? Auto-immune conditions often start with gut problems. How do I know - I was diagnosed with Crohns over 40 years ago and Hashimotos in 2005.

  • You could also have auto-immune thyroiditis ie. Hashimotos, which could explain weight loss followed by fatigue etc. Important for you to get thyroid antibody tests done. GPs will not normally test for these just tsh, ft3 and ft4 if youre lucky. These might be within normal but low range. The antibody tests if positive, will prove beyond doubt you are hypothyroid and need treatment.

  • Hi I don't have the answers for you, but reading your post sounds exactly like what happened to me. Two stone fell off overnight.. at first I was delighted.. thinnest ive ever been.. but then I started to sleep non stop and weight started creeping on.. doctor put me on levothyroxine.. but it made me have total insomnia and racing heart and I was so hot at night and so cold all day with no energy.. it took six months to stop those horrible symptoms once I stopped levothyroxine. I did not have the antibodies so dont think I have hashis... can I ask you.. around the time the weight fell off.. did anything traumatic happen? End of a relationship or family tragedy? I ask because I think stress and the adrenal glands could have a lot to do with it. Also I recently found out that my iron, ferritin and vit d are all very low.. since starting vit d supplements I am starting to feel a bit like my old self again.. so I would recommend you get all your vitamins tested... and also do the saliva cortisol test.. I havent done it yet.. but I should :) it will show you how your adrenals are working.. good luck :) ps there are many people on here who are much more kmowledgable than me.. so keep reading all the posts x

  • Pam 13, do you not take thyroid supps at all?

  • Sally.. I havent been on anything for a year and a half as ive been trying to feel well again by vit c and b vits only.. and more recently vit d, but only last week I decided I might try a really small dose of levo to see if I react better now that my iron and vit d is better.. im not sure im doing the right thing though.. dr says I can try it but doesnt think I need to.. but my bloods show a low t4 and low t3 and borderline tsh... its so hard to know what to do.. I just dont want to develop cancers and other ailments low thyroid can cause... I will give it six weeks only.. see how I feel and if my bloods change.. so far after a week I havent noticed any change.. im still sleeping for ulster ;)

  • Ok. I also have no antibodies so was interested in your case. Have just been weaned off T4 over 2 weeks ago but symptoms starting to come back :-( will get new blood results soon to know whats potting but not feeling good. Hoping its just the tapering off of T4 while my body adjusts to its own chemistry. Fingers crossed! If I do go hypo again, I am going to try the T3 route. Been reading Paul Robinsons book about recovering with T3. T4 never made me feel great.

  • Why are you weaning off t4? Is it because of symptoms? I have read lots about t3 amd would like to try it too as I havr low body temp.. I have been off levo for a long time now.. and my bloods never improved.. they went back to similar levels where they started before levo though.. good luck with t3 if you can get it.. my doctor and endo refuse to give it.. and they dont even know what armour thyroid is... which I find amusing for a specialist in endocrinology lol

  • They believe my thyroid problem was caused by a virus and my levels improved quite quickly, so to wean me off and see if levels stayed good would prove the theory. Anyway, will see how I go. I will buy t3 if i have to.

  • I've never heard of that before.. I wonder how they came to the conclusion it was a virus? I hope your levels do become normal.. that would be brilliant news for you :) fingers crossed x

  • Its another form of thyroiditis, called De quervains. When a virus attacks the thyroid. It can either recover or just get very damaged that the condition becomes permanent.

  • I agree with you pam13, as I don't think this is hypothyroidism. On reading your post Gaileeng, my instant thought was iron deficiency. This is where the air hunger comes in. Too little oxygen in the system, which would normally be trapped and transported around the body by iron. Hair loss is another symptom of iron deficiency (folate). It is possible to have an overnight weight loss, strange though it sounds, quite naturally and this needn't be down to stress, but being physically on the go for a long time. And this is a sign of a healthy body.

    The sudden weight loss might have taken some crucial minerals with it, including iron. I would ask for a blood count in the first instance and if this can include the other minerals, that would be better (but i doubt that a GP would go to this length).

    I would hate for you to go down the hypothyroid route unnecessarily.

    Good luck x

  • Thank you so much your so kind to reply and very helpful x

  • Hi, yes the weight loss was just after the end of a relationship x

  • Hi Gaileeng, sorry your going through so much. But it does sound like you may have Hypothyroidism ( under active ) it does sound like the symptoms of what nearly all of us with Hypothyroidism and you should ask your doctor for a blood test for it. They should do with the symptoms your having. Good luck I hope you get well soon and find out what is wrong soon.

  • Thank you so much for your reply Wayne and all the other comments from everyone, as awful as it is to hear of others suffering in the same way its also comforting to know I am not imagining the unwell feelings that I have constantly and its now very worrying, seeing how ill my Mum is who started off exactly the same as me she is now on Methotrexate, an awful form of medication with terrible side affects, she has injections in her tummy and is riddled with RA and Fibromyalgia, she also takes steroids and I am refusing to take any of the above I am currently doing it all with supplements with nutrition and already starting to make me feel better x

  • I have been back to my doctors last night but the computers were down so have no idea where the Rheumatoid Arthritis is in my body or indeed how severe as this has shown up in my blood. Doctor also asked questions as to whether I had had previous blood issues, he has only been my doctor for about 12 years so was not aware at the age of 4 I had Henoc Sheline Purpura (I think that's how you spell it lol). This caused all my hair to fall out, horse shape bruises on my torso and vomited pure blood. They took me into hospital as they thought it was Leukaemia. This illness can apparently rear its ugly head later on in life in the form of a rash (which I don't have but did a few months ago on my legs itching etc), terrible abdominal pains which I currently suffer with terribly and have been referred to a stomach specialist and also terrible pains in the legs shoulders and ankles, again something I suffer with. So now I don't know which way to go with this. The doctor has referred me private for a full screening of bloods for my thyroid so hopefully will get that sorted soon. Any advice please x as I am pulling my hair out with feeling unwell all the time, literally as I currently have another bald patch. I don't want to take steroids or any form of horrible medication so am trying to help or reduce symptoms with diet and nutrition and supplements which are helping to a degree.

  • Hi the only test my doctor would do for my thyroid is the TSH which came back 1.53?? I have been referred privately for the full blood test as the NHS wont do it

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