Thyroid UK
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Test Results and NDT

Hi all,

A couple of days ago I posted about my ongoing thyroid issues, and that i felt I needed more Armour (which I get on the NHS- two grains per day). I'm going to my GP tonight so I wanted to ask some advice about my lab results, as they weren't quite what I was expecting. I was expecting TSH to be high, but in fact that and my T3 are fine and my T4 is only just low.

TSH 0.12 (0.27-4.2 range)

Free Thyroxine 11.7 (assume this is T4? 12-22 range)

Free T3 5.9 (3.1-6.8 range)

They didn't do any antibodies or anything else.

Given that my symptoms are just getting worse and worse- why are my labs apparently so good? I decided to self-medicate yesterday before I'd seen these, and I had an extra 0.25 grain today. Apart from a bit of a panic attack midday (I think that may have been due to drinking coffee and worrying on top of the extra dose. My heart rate was normal), i've achieved more today than I have in two weeks. I haven't needed a nap, although I'm still cold.

Any advice before I see the doctor? I'm asking him to refer me to St Bart's whatever happens, I just feel conflicted now about self-medicating the additional dose, but I can't bear the thought of carrying on like a depressed zombie otherwise.

Help! Thanks in advance to anyone who replies :)

12 Replies

Electrica, your results look very good indeed, but there is room for a dose increase without pushing your T3 over range. There's 2.25mcg T3 in a quarter grain. Maybe that little tweak is just the filip you need.

I don't remember whether you said ferritin, vitamin D, B12 and folate have been tested. If not, ask your GP as low/deficient levels can present musculoskeletal pain, fatigue and low mood similar to hypothyroid symptoms.


Before the blood tests were introduced, that's how we were medicated. Take NDT until you felt well and symptoms relieved. The usual dose was between 200mcg and 400mcg, dependent upon the person. This equals around 2 and 4 grains , but I've read that some have taken more than this.

It's how our body 'feels' not what the blood tests indicate which is the best way to judge our hormone dose. Sometimes that's all that may be required, a small increase.


I agree with you Shaws. I started on Nature-throid the 25 February which makes it 5 weeks today. I have worked up from 1 grain (already on T4 and T3), and now I am up to 2 1/2 grains. Will be doing 3 grains next Monday. I feel better, non of the horrible side effects with Levo and T3. No rapid heart just feeling that I can absorb more and more. I recently had an Ultra Scan done and it showed that my thyroid had shrunk and was small. I just feel that I need a lot more than I have been taking for the last 20 years. A mere 100mcgs T4 and the last year 20mcgs T3. I would never go back to that. I will check my bloods in another week, Endo gave me the papers. I have not told him I have starded NDT but after the results I will let him know.


I would stop doing labs really isn't necessary. My veins have developed so much scar tissue that i can't have an iv and blood drawing is painful. I am at the end of my rope..really. Just so done with doctors.


thanks for your responses. Well I've been two days on the extra quarter grain and the difference in my mood and energy is incredible. I still think I may need to go up a bit but I think I need to give this dose time to kick in. I'm still getting a slump at 11 every day, where I start to freeze- I think I need to look into adrenal issues.My hands are like ice as I type this!

So I told my doctor yesterday what I was doing and he was great, he is looking into referring me to St Bart's or possibly Guy's. He's told me that he obviously can't approve of me taking the extra medication, but he understands why I'm doing it. He issued me with propranolol as I've read that if you start to get hyper symptoms that can be used to counter it, and I gave him some information about dosing etc so he knew I wasn't being irresponsible.

I need to see him again soon to discuss a few bits but I am thinking about asking for a VIT D test. All my other blood and B12s came back fine although that was a couple of years ago, but no real reason to think otherwise.

I might post about these 'secondary' issues later. Thanks all for your advice, it's much appreciated :)


You can increase NDT about every 2 weeks. Always make a record of your pulse/temp till you are on an optimum dose and then you don't need to record.


Please listen to Shaws!!! The labs will keep you ill.


I will definitely give what you're saying consideration- I would rather do things in conjunction with a doctor and I feel like I need to at least exhaust that route fully before I go properly off piste. I think the meds are quite expensive really, for two bottles I've just bought it was £127 ish. I will have to see how things go and what dose I end up on, but if I can get it from the NHS (that I pay for with my taxes) I would rather do that as a first preference.

I do worry about all the heart attack/osteoporosis stuff though, and as previously discussed, I am near to the end of the T3 range already. It seems like raising the dose a lot could be quite risky from that perspective.


Please direct this about dangers, to Shaws. She has lots of good links about this. I fear, that you have been frightened by your doctors ignorance. Again, i do think that if you continue to listen to their "stories" you will remain ill. Please ask Shaws about this!!!


I've read conflicting things about the risks tbh. the doctors like to use it as their trump card, and I don't fully believe them, but i'm sure there is truth in what they're saying. I need more facts really to make a clear decision.


Please contact Shaws for good info. I don't think that there is truth in what they are saying. Improperly treated Hypothyroidism can cause Heart Disease and Osteoporosis too. You are not Hyperthyroid.


Read Society for Endocrinology Media release March 2010, results

The study found that patients with very high (>4.0mU/l) or suppressed (≤0.03mU/l) TSH levels more frequently suffered from heart disease, abnormal heartbeat patterns and bone fractures compared to patients whose TSH levels are in the normal range (0.4-4.0 mU/l). Patients who had a slightly low TSH level (0.04-0.4mU/l) did not have an increased risk of contracting any of these conditions.

0.12 should be fine and no problems. I am at <0.05 but am not worried as I feel better. I have just demanded vitamin tests and I am deficient in vit D. My endo did not pick up on this or my GP. I think a lot of this is due to vit deficiencies not picked up on rather than TSH levels.


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