Thyroid UK
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Trouble getting a diagnosis

Hi all

I feel quite convinced from my symptoms, and my research and reading that I'm hypothyroid and possibly have hashimotos too but I've been struggling to get a diagnosis. I managed to convince my dermatologist (who I saw for hair loss) to do extra blood tests and my TPO abs came "slightly" out of range (in the words of my GP). I then had to convince my GP to give me a referral to the local endo and I've finally got an appointment lined up in about a weeks time. But I don't have high hopes.... I'm quite worried that I'm going to be dismissed and not receive adequate treatment or no treatment at all.

I'm planning on seeing a private doc too (that has been recommended on here), just in case things don't go well with the nhs docs.

Could anyone provide any tips or pointers with regards to my blood results please:

TSH. 1.08

FREE T4. 14.9

FREE T3. 4.0

Thyroid TPO abs. 39.9

Thyroglobulin. 20.0


IRON. 13.0

He didn't test my vitamin D or B12 unfortunately. These results are actually a couple of months old too. Can a lot change within that time?

Thanks in advance!

8 Replies

Hello serenitee,I wish I could help but I'm only learning myself. I do know you're Tsh looks good but free t3 and 4 look low you're TPO about is lower than mine which is 50> and if I remember right the range is 00 -36 so yes yours is slightly high. Some of the kind knowledgeable people here will help you soon.

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Thanks pet-lamb!

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Welcome to the forum, Serenitee.

If the TPOab range is 0-34, your antibodies are mildly elevated but it confirms you have autoimmune thyroid disease (Hashimoto's). This means you are likely to become hypothyroid in the future. Doctors don't treat underlying autoimmune disease, they treat the resulting hypothyroidism which may take years to develop. You may be able to slow progression to hypothyroidism by adopting a 100% gluten-free diet which may also reduce antibodies.

TSH 1.08, FT4 14.9 and FT3 4.0, are unequivocally euthyroid (normal) and indicates your thyroid is functioning well for now. NHS won't diagnose hypothyroidism until TSH is >5 or 6, or FT4 is below range and it's unlikely a private doctor will consider you have a thyroid problem.

Ferritin is suboptimal. Halfway through range is optimal. If you don't know the range aim for 70-90. Supplement Ferrous Fumerate and take each iron tablet with 500mg-1,000mg vitamin C to aid absorption and minimise constipation. Retest in 4-6 months.

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Thanks for your reply Clutter.

Would it still be helpful to take any thyroid meds for hashimotos though?


Serenitee, the thyroid meds replace low thyroid hormone, they don't treat Hashimoto's. Suppressing TSH can dampen Hashimoto's but is likely to make you feel very overmedicated which is extremely unpleasant. Your antibodies are so low it's really worth trying a gluten-free diet and chances are the antibodies will disappear.


Ah I see.

I actually started gluten free a few months ago and lasted for about 6 weeks but then I faltered (I was away from home and have been busy). I didn't feel any difference whilst I was on it but I know it can take a few months before you see a proper improvement.

I'll start it again soon.

Thanks again for all your help


Serenitee, it is likely you will become hypothyroid but it is equally likely it will take a long time, perhaps years. Have annual thyroid function tests to keep an eye on levels.


Speaking from my own experience: I suggest you get TPO and TG antibody tests (which you have), go GF (no cheating!!) for 6 months, then test TPO and TG again. If gluten was the culprit, antibodies will have lowered. If they don't go down, then general environmental pollution, or some other toxic food, is causing elevated antibodies.

If you were heavily damaged by gluten (which you aren't yet) it could take many years after gluten cessation before you felt better.


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