Thyroid UK
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Ferritin good. Saturation in range but low

I am on Nature Throid 2 grains. I've not had a problem getting onto this. Was on T3 only for 6 months before this. Prior to all of this I had been on 125mcgs levothyroxine for 28years and very stable. Suddenly it stopped working for me and I ended up with very low TSH. Very high T4 and low T3.

Endo put on combo for 3 months but my symptoms didn't improve do she put me on straight t3 for another 3 months. Still no improvement.

She then decided nature throid would be worth a trial. However, she also wanted me on.iron supplement. Although my ferritin was extremely good my iron saturation was mid range. She wanted it nearer the ttop 1/4.

I started taking ferrous fumarate but then I saw my Haematologist who went potty. Due to a serious blood condition he said I was NOT to continue with iron supplement.

So my question is this....... If my ferritin is good will that be enough to handle ndt.?????

9 Replies

I suspect your haematologist went nuts because taking iron supplements when ferritin is already quite high in range can easily push ferritin over the range and this may lead to iron getting deposited in places it shouldn't be. And the body has no obvious mechanism to remove it when iron is in the wrong places.

Ferritin is the body's iron store molecule.

If ferritin is high in range there is usually a good reason for it (and I'm not referring to taking supplements, although that is an obvious cause). Imagine you have an infection. The bugs you are infected with need iron to help them to reproduce. The body "knows" this and it will protect you from the bugs by storing any iron (above the minimum needed to maintain life) in ferritin. When the infection has been eliminated then the body will start releasing iron into the body again and ferritin levels will drop.

The same effect (i.e. the body retaining iron in ferritin) happens when inflammation exists somewhere in the body.

So, if your ferritin looks surprisingly good, it could be because you have an infection somewhere or inflammation is occurring. The next thing your doctor should be doing is trying to find out which of these two things is true and where the problem is occurring.

Inflammation can be measured by testing one or both of the following :



I used to think having ferritin a little over mid-range was okay. But now I err on the side of caution and want my ferritin to be mid-range and no higher. I have the same feelings about serum iron.

For your high ferritin and mid-range saturation, you might be in the process of developing Anaemia of Chronic Disease, rather than iron-deficiency anaemia, and if this is the case then the last thing you need is iron supplements.

Read this page, and take a look at the table at the bottom of the page :

And for info on Anaemia of Chronic Disease :

Hope this helps.


I should mention...

I said the body has no obvious way of getting rid of excess iron. But there is one way people can choose to get rid of it.

Give blood!

However, if all your other nutrients are low in range, as they often are for people with thyroid problems, then giving blood might not be a popular choice. So the answer is to avoid taking too much iron in the first place. :)


All that was what I already knew. My question was if my ferritin is good does it matter that my % saturation is on the low side but still in range in rider for me to be able to successful use nature throid??

The Haematologist made me stop iron supplement as I have the JAK2 mutation. Taking iron supplement will, he said, make this condition worse.

I had no trouble at all going straight onto 2 grains.

My ferritin prior to supplement was 94. After two months supplement was 160,

Can someone please give me direct answer.


130396, What an ungracious response to a member taking the trouble to try and help you!

Good ferritin level, optimal is half way through range, aids absorption of thyroid medication and toleration of dose increases. I have no idea whether low saturation impacts. Perhaps one of the links Humanbean posted will have the information.


Clutter. I did try to respond politely on two occasions but this reply section for some reason kept dropping my replies so in the end I just wrote the basic answer above.

I apologise if it came across wrong.

What I said in the previous two replies was to explain that I am JAK2 positive and that is why I'm.under a Haematologist as my blood condition is life threatening. I got told off by him.for taking iron supplement and he said by doing this I was aggregating the condition which again he stated I had to stop or further risk my life.

I am on hydroxycarbamide (chemo tablet) for this condition which is lifelong treatment.

So basically I was worried that if my iron wasn't up to it them my nature throid wouldn't work for me and I wouldn't be able to tolerate optimal dosing.

So again.I apologise



It's not so much that thyroid meds don't/won't work when ferritin/iron is low but people often feel hyper when they're on a low dose and try to increase dose. As you're on 2 grains it doesn't look as the low saturation is inhibiting NDT. Hopefully you won't have any problems if you need to increase dose but if you do, skip a dose and then cut right back to the previous dose for a week or two before trying again.


Thank you Clutter. I really appreciate your reply.

All if my other levels are good. Vit D is 111. B12 is 772. Folate is good too.

I was just getting worried that I wouldn't be able to increase dose because of the iron situation.

I had bloods done last Thursday so should get results Tuesday which I then have to give my endocrinologist. I am hoping an increase is needed so that I can feel well again.

I did have a conversion problem after being on levo only for 28years. I was keeping very well and felt good until I suddenly developed this conversion problem.

Thank you again.


How long ago did you start on the chemo? That stuff also has side effects that make people feel poorly.



I've been on the chemo tablet for 2 months.

So far it hasn't made me feel worse.

I had chemo 20years ago too and it didn't make me feel unwell then either.

How I feel now is how I've felt for last 21months since levo went wrong and I had problems with it.


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