Thyroid UK
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TSH of 5.4 (0.27 – 4.2)- what next?

I'm in unchartered territory. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's in 2011 after several years with a strange and complicated illness. I've got myself to a state of pretty good health, using levo, supplements and healthy eating, and no gluten. My husband was called for routine blood tests at our GP surgery a couple of weeks ago and to our surprise he is showing elevated TSH of 5.4. He asked about further testing but the GP was quite dismissive (what is the point of doing this preventative testing if not to take action???) and said they would retest in 3 months. He said he could not possibly justify further tests after only 1 high reading.

My husband seems to have no symptoms whatsoever - when my TSH was lower than this I could hardly get out of bed with fatigue. Is this normal? Any ideas anyone? He was taking antihistimes at the time - could this have caused it?

5 Replies

Pink_Bear, it is normal protocol to retest 3 months after an intial high TSH result to rule out non-thyroidal illness which can affect thyroid hormones.

As your husband has no symptoms he may have had a virus which has reduced his T4 and T3 causing his TSH to rise and it will resolve by his next test, or it may be that hypothyroidism has been caught early before symptoms have built up. If his TSH remains high at his next test he should be tested for thyroid peroxidase and thyroglobulin antibodies to rule out or confirm autoimmune thyroid disease (Hashimoto's).

TSH levels don't necessarily correlate with severity of symptoms as shown by those whose TSH was found to be very high (in the hundreds) by 'accidental' screening and those with TSH quite low within range but who are very debilitated with symptoms.

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Thank you very much Clutter - that's very reassuring.


My hubby was diagnosed with Hashimotos at 72. I just added the TSH to his PSA test when he was going to the Blood Testing Clinic in the next village. It was almost 5. I then sent him off for the remaining tests - FT3 FT4 and anti-bodies. His FT3 was below range and he has Hashimotos too ! Had a phone appointment with my Endo that evening and he just told me to give him one of my tablets immediately. That's Crete for you !! Now 75 and struggles with all the information that I excitedly spout - but he seems fine ! He too did not have any symptoms apart from feeling tired and breathless when he was walking up the hill into the village.

On the other hand I think men are somewhat macho/stoical about symptoms and choose to ignore them. Thyroid symptoms can be very subtle and creep up slowly.

Are you going to have him re-tested ?

PS Our dog is also hypo !!


Yes, I am planning to get him to have private tests within the next few weeks - but it's a bit of a struggle and because he has no symptoms he doesn't see any need for urgency. But I was proud of the way he quizzed our GP about his TSH test - after some tuition from me!

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:-) x


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