Thyroid problem? Hashimotos?

Do I have a thyroid problem ? hashimotos ?

I have a family history of hypothyroidism (mum, sister and grandma ) I have been suffering for a while with the following symptoms;

-tiredness

-panic attacks

-tremors

-feeling really hot (sweating and hot flushes) or really cold (toes going blue)

-feeling down and not with it

-teary and feelings of dispair

-nosebleeds

-unable to concentrate

-feeling sick with certain smells (usually have a strong stomach)

The tiredness has been a big issue and I seem to get wiped out by illnesses often not bouncing back and suffering with low white blood cell counts or having swollen glands in neck or groin. I've had work and living stress and its got to the point where I am unable to cope. I've suggested to doctors I've seen about thyroid and the connection with family history and have blood tests but am always 'in normal range'. I suffer from low-ish blood pressure and have struggled in the past with nausea and feeling faint and generally unwell. My doctor did a blood test and I asked to do a thyroid test including antibodies and these are the results;

Serum tsh - 2.4 mu/l. (0.55-4.78mu/l)

Serum free t4 level- 17pmol/l. (9.0-23.00pmol/l)

Thyroid antibodies -96.6iu/ml. Positive

Plasma glucose 4.7mmol/l (2.5-6mmol/L)

Blood pressure 110/74

Platelet count 153. (150-400)

Total white cell 4.4. (4-11)

I would appreciate any help or advice, seeing the doctor again on Thursday

3 Replies

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  • Welcome to the forum, Fae1960.

    Positive thyroid antibodies means you have autoimmune thyroid disease. Your doctor will probably describe it as thyroiditis or autoimmune thyroiditis but it is commonly known as Hashimoto's.

    Although Hashimoto's will eventually cause your thyroid gland to fail doctors don't usually make a hypothyroid diagnosis until TSH is over range ie >4.78 or FT4 is under range ie <9.0.

    Dr A Toft, consultant physician and endocrinologist at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, wrote in Pulse Magazine, "If these [thyroid peroxidase antibodies] are positive – indicative of underlying autoimmune thyroid disease – the patient should be considered to have the mildest form of hypothyroidism.

    In the absence of symptoms some would simply recommend annual thyroid function tests until serum TSH is over 10mU/l or symptoms such as tiredness and weight gain develop. But a more pragmatic approach is to recognise that the thyroid failure is likely to become worse and try to nip things in the bud rather than risk loss to follow-up."

    thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/about_...

    If a full copy of the Pulse article would be helpful to show your GP email louise.warvill@thyroiduk.org.uk

    Ask your GP to check ferritin, vitamin D, B12 and folate which are often low or deficient in Hashimoto's patients. Low levels can cause musculoskeletal pain, fatigue and low mood similar to hypothyroid symptoms. Ask for the results, normal is rarely optimal, and if you post the results and lab ref ranges in a new question members will advise whether you need to supplement.

    It may be worth reading this link before you see your GP thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/diagno...

  • Hello Fae1960,

    Sorry to hear that you are not well.

    Hormone imbalances can cause many physical and psychological problems. In addition a high antibody count can wreak havoc on the body encouraging inflammation and further illness.

    You have positive antibodies for Hashimotos Thyroiditis Auto Immune Disease which is prevalent in many people with thyroid issues.

    Unfortunately the destruction it can cause is not recognised by conventional medicine as there is no medical treatment available. However, many find a gluten free diet and healthy life style help in reducing the antibody count and in turn, inflammation and pain, etc.

    Most doctors have difficulty interpreting thyroid hormone test results and their "normal" will be given in order to fit strict guidelines that may not take into account the patients symptoms. These guidelines refer to treating those with a TSH of over 10 or 5 with symptoms and unfortunately there is usually little flexibility for those that this protocol doesn't fit, with the symptoms being overlooked or attributed to another.

    Ask your doctor to test Vit B12, Vit D, Folate, Ferritin and Iron as these are often deficient in people with thyroid issues and emphasise how ill you have been feeling lately. Alternatively ask for a second opinion and a trial of Levothyroxine.

    I hope you feel better soon,

    flower007

  • Your results almost are identical to mine, except for some of your symptoms. But the white cell counts and platelets have been with me for years. It has been suggested that with the low antibody result you have shown (-96) that can also indicate other immune deficiency. My is 56. So you could be borderline or not, depending upon how your doctor interprets the results - and each doctor is different. Once you see your doctor, leave a post as to the suspected diagnosis. Good luck.

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