Help Interpreting results

Hello, having been a reader for a while, this is my first post. It's a great community with some very supportive and knowledgeable people.

I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism about 10 years ago. For the last few years I have been on 75mg thyroxine, but recently I decided to reduce it to 50 mg about 3 weeks before my last blood test. At that time I also started taking kelp tablets as I thought this might help the thyroid. My test were

TSH 21.61 mlU/L [0.34 - 5.6]

Free T4 8.70 pmol/L [7.5 - 21.1]

Free tryodothyronine 5.50 pmol/L [3.8 - 6.8]

vitamin B12 250 ng/L [180.0 - 914.0]

Vitamin D 57 nmol/L

My GP advised me to go back to 75 mg thyroxine (which I have done). I thought I had overcome my anxiety and general brain fog having been free of major symptoms for a year. But these have returned. I'm now taking insitol, aswaghandha, 5HTP and L-theanine to help me cope. I've stopped taking kelp. I also have been suffering from sinus problems for several years.

Do you think my symptoms of panic and brain fog are connected to my thyroid, and I would be interested to hear from others on their experience of using the supplements that I am taking. I'm not in a very nice place at the moment.

16 Replies

  • Welcome to the forum, Reealturbo.

    I'm not surprised you feel unwell with TSH 21.61 but I can't believe a 25mcg dose reduction is responsible for such elevation and suspect you have been undermedicated for some time which is why you have anxiety and brain fog again. Please be very cautious driving. Research has shown that TSH >20 can impair reactions more than being over the drink drive limit.

    Make sure you have thyroid retested in 6-8 weeks, and take Levothyroxine after the blood draw, as I'm sure you are going to need another 2 or 3 dose increases to bring TSH down to 1.0 which is where most people feel comfortable.

    B12 is extremely low, 1,000 is optimal. Supplement 5,000mcg methylcobalamin sublingual lozenges, spray or patches for 8 weeks and then reduce to 1,000mcg maintenance dose. Take a B Complex vitamin to keep the other B vitamins balanced.

    VitD is suboptimal, replete is 75-200 and most are comfortable at 100. Supplement 5,000iu D3 softgel capsules, drops or spray for 8 weeks and reduce to 5,000iu alternate days until April. Take vitD 4 hours away from Levothyroxine.

  • Hello real turbo,

    Welcome to our forum and sorry to hear that you are not feeling well.

    Brain fog and anxiety are symptoms of low thyroid hormones.

    Clutter has already given you good advice re your test results and deficiencies.

    I think you would also benefit by encouraging your thyroid meds to synthesis better and improve the conversion of T4 to T3. The link below ..( although a bit scientific..).. explains the connection between the addition of T3 & sleep or depression issues.

    Supplementing selenium will help with T4-T3 conversion and so hopefully raising T3 levels ... which may in turn help with any sleep issues or depression.

    I think your sups are good and know Inositol works in conjunction with serotonin but it is also known is known to decrease testosterone levels in both men and women. I don't know if it can be used long term


    I have found 5-HTP to be beneficial too.

    Ensuring optimal nutrient levels will further improve thyroid meds to work.

    Have you had folate and ferritin levels checked..? ?


    This following link explains the importance of selenium and other vitamins and where they may be obtained. This forum is supported by the charity ThyroidUK. You do not have to join the charity to benefit from this forum but by doing so you will be supporting the charity and also entitled to various discounts when buying supplements, as detailed in the link below.

  • Hi everyone

    People talk about brain fog a lot on here, but not sure what that means,

    Could somebody explain to me the definition of this?


  • As the name implies claretsmad.... The brain becomes foggy, responses are slow and memory none existent.

    It can make one feel anxious, insecure and disorientated. My brain fog lasted intermittently for nearly 4 years and was only alleviated by adding T3 to my T4 meds.

    It can be caused by low thyroid hormones or sometimes extreme nutrient deficiencies but is not always recognised by the medical profession.


  • As well as the things Flower007 mentioned, one thing I got with brain fog was a total inability to plan things. Even things like making a shopping list were beyond me, and I had to ask my husband for help. I could just about manage the shopping but I ended up wandering around a lot and being very inefficient because I kept losing track of what I was doing. I might have baked beans on my list and I would walk to the tinned vegetable aisle and once I reached it I would forget what I had gone there for. If I consulted my list I would search for ages to find what it was that made me go there.

    Having brain fog often makes people fear they are developing dementia.

  • your TSH is way way too high it should be near or below 1

    your Free T4 is very low and should be more like 18 or 19

    I doubt even 75mcg was ever adequate dosage

    whats vital though is




    Vit d3

    These 4 MUST ALL BE HALFWAY in their ranges

    Otherwise your body cannot make any use of the levothyroxine and convert it into the T3 that every cell in your body needs

    I have no idea about the other stuff your taking but suggest you leave it out while blood teats are done and their effects are researched

  • Hi, your dose of 75 mcgs is low and you have no idea if the T4 you are taking is converting to the active T3 hormone. If a dose of thyroid hormone is low then your own thyroid gland will reduce it's own output as it detects you are taking medication. You cannot "top up" thyroid hormone, you have to replace what you are taking and then more. With the brain fog you have it sounds like you have a conversion problem. Your TSH is very high and shows you are very hypo. A TSH of no more than 2 is recommended by my Belgium doctor, Dr Hertoghe. I would get your adrenals tested with an adrenal saliva test. Test your ferritin levels and get your doctor to add some T3 to your T4. The T4 can just sit in the blood if the conversion does not take place in the liver. When this happens the T3 receptor sites on the cells go to sleep as they are not receiving the T3 that they need to enter the nucleus of the cell. Please don't leave this as it can get worse. If your doctor will not help then find one that will. I hope this helps, take care

  • I have no thyroid and I find that if my Levo dose isn't right then no amount of supplementation will make me feel good.

    However, the vitamins are important for optimal functioning.

    Also, my Levo dose requirements seem to fluctuate and that can be a trial trying to convince doctors if the blood test looks ok.

    I wouldn't recommend reducing the thyroxine if you feel ok. I now realise that when I shrug my shoulders and say I feel ok, it actually means I feel great as I have no symptoms.

    Good luck and I hope you feel better soon :)

  • Glad to see you are here to learn more about your condition. We think of metabolism as keeping your temperature up and your weight down but it has far reaching effects as you are finding with your brain. This short video gives you an idea. If you want to see other aspects, you can click on the you tube icon at lower right and view more.

  • Good Video! Don't skip meals and don't eat crap - great way to summarize things, that's something I will always remember.

  • Ha, I'm sure you already knew THAT. The importance of how serotonin is affected and the result of being depressed or having anxiety is the take away, I think. Lack of hormone has so many injurious effects and the symptoms don't seem to be recognized as the outgrowths of low thyroid. If you watch any of his others, he has identified 23 reasons for low thyroid and what they cause, i.e. pcos, infertility, deficiencies of B12, ferritin, and others which may also need treatment.

  • Thank to everybody for responding to my post. I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed to find that there are so many people out there who are are happy and willing to give their time to help others.

    Thanks Clutter for your suggestion - I have been taking vit D and sublingual B12, but not regularly and at doses you suggest; I will follow your advice on this. I will look into the link given by you Flower007, and do further research on the long term use of inositol. My folate level (42U5) was 8.2ug/L [3.1 - 19.9], I don't think my ferratin level was checked. Thanks for your very concise reply reallyfedup123. Gismo333, I don't really get on with my doctor, but will try to see if he will add T3 to my prescription (very unlikely). Is Free tryodothyronine 5.50 pmol/L [3.8 - 6.8] same as Free T3? Interesting video Heloise, wish there was a bit more on how to manage low seratonin the central nervous system, rather than just 'don't skip meals and don't eat crap'.

    Wishing better health to all...

  • Anxiety and panic are classic thyroid symptoms. Your test results did not include TPO and TG antibodies. Do you know if you have Hashimoto's? If not, you should find out because active Hashis can make treatment more difficult. Even though your FT3 of 5.50 is (surprisingly) good, it's clear from your TSH and FT4 that you are very hypo and I would certainly go back up to 75mcg. After you've been on that 5 weeks, retest; you will probably find you need more T4, and maybe even a little T3. Remember, the full replacement dose of T4 (per Abbott) is about 1.7mcg/kg body weight; multiply that by your body weight and compare that dose, to 75mcg.

  • Your B12 is very low in range and could be causing your symptoms.

  • Have you asked your G.P about vit b injections? I have one every three months now.

  • The GP didn't say anything about B12 being low, but I guess there's no harm in asking. Knowing him, he'll be reluctant and will probably fobb me off...

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