Thyroid UK
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I have high TSH while normal t4,43.. confused.

hello, I am 20 years old, third year university student who discovered that I have hypothyroidism 5 months ago. I felt fine and I have not taken levothyroxin until recently.. being stressed now because of my final exams.. and feeling unmotivated to study. I do sometimes feel tired now and then, bloating, brain fog and short-term memory problems.

-I have been taking kelp supplement for 1 month.

last time I checked before 2 months and My TSH was 17 yet my t4, t3 are normal.

and today's test- tells me I have 6 TSH.

info about my blood work before 2 months:

TSH- 17.09

T4-free 0.9 [normal range: (0.8-1.5)]

T3- free 2.5 [normal range: (2.3-4.2)]

Thyroglobulin ab- 2378 [it should be less than 100]

Anti thyroid peroxid 1074 [it should be less than 50]

does'nt this tell that I have hashimato's autoimmune disease?

I DO NOT KNOW what is my next step.. should I stop taking levothyroxine and test after one month to see if the TSH elevated again.. and then take levothyroxine..

or keep taking levothyroxine and wait.

14 Replies

You need to put reference ranges on your readings (the doctors can provide them) but a TSH of 17 sounds high compared to most ranges.

If you're on levothyroxine I'd suggest that you continue with it until you're on the right dose (they normally retest every 2 months initially as it takes a while to get into your system). Once you're on the right dose (this can take a while; I took 6 months to graduate up to the right dose) it will then take around a year to heal back up as the thyroid stuff is slow.

Your symptoms sound quite strong to me. Take the levo and keep going back to the drs until the dose is right but you do need to give it some time. Once you feel well you will realise just how bad you felt before you were diagnosed and treated

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thanks.. yes I started taking levothyroxine yesterday and did a blood test today and the TSH is 6 :O... isn't that really fast?

also I have been supplementing with kelp for 2 months. and before two months my TSH was 17.. today got the results.. its 6.

could the levethyroxine has affected the TSH levels so fast?


Don't take kelp or any iodine supplements.

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agreed. I read an article about it.. no need. thanks ^.^


If you take the thyroxine on the same day as you have your thyroid blood test done your TSH reading will make you look less hypothyroid than you really are. Also TSH varies during the day and is highest first thing in the morning. Sadly this means that the over-reliance of most doctors on the TSH reading leaves many hypothyroid people undermedicated. What doctor should really do is to look at the FT4 and FT3 readings, and although yours are within the range they are both at the bottom of the range which means your thyroid is definitely struggling. Most people feel better with their FT4 and FT3 levels at least half way up the range, many need them in the top 25% of the range. It takes 6 weeks for thyroxine to build up in your system and make you feel better, although some people (myself included) seem more sensitive to changes in dose and can feel the difference within a day or two.

Both your antibody readings are very high, and when your thyroid is under attack the blood test readings can change very quickly I believe. Some people find they swing between hypo and hyper symptoms. Some people find they can stop this happening by going gluten free, others find it makes no difference. If you do experience hyper symptoms you can just stop taking the thyroxine for a few days, then take a bit less until the situation resolves itself.

Because all these antibodies are attacking your thyroid you will need an increasing dose of thyroid medication over the next months and years as your thyroid stops working. Eventually your thyroid will stop working completely and then you should find a stable dose of thyroid medication that makes you feel well. In the meantime read up about the symptoms of hypo and hyperthyroidism so that you are your own expert. It won't be long before you know more than the average GP does.


eeng thank you for your reply :)

oh! it is a lifetime thing. but is there is a way to reverse the autoimmune response and make my thyroid work normally. I am 20 years old. I cannot except taking medications for a life time and who knows I get better or not. I have always eaten clean. and I am welling to go gluten-free for one month and update how I feel. okay for now I will follow what you have said and take levothyroxine and see how symptoms go.. sigh..


I know it's difficult to accept taking thyroid medications for life but I'm afraid it will be necessary until some other solution can be found. There are amazing things going on with stem cell research and 3D printing of thyroid glands. Maybe within 20-30 years there will be a way to replace your failing thyroid with a healthy one. In the meantime you will have to comfort yourself that you don't have epilepsy, heart problems, type 1 diabetes etc, all of which are much more debilitating and all of which need you to remember to take your medication every day. If you forgot your thyroxine for a weekend even you wouldn't die! In extreme cases some people take a week's worth at a time.

Also since you are replacing hormones which your body should be producing anyway you shouldn't have side effects doe to your medication (once you are on the right dose). Some people are allergic to the fillers in some thyroid medication, but most people find something that suits them.

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:) yes.. that's right. hmmm okay.


I doubt it has anything to do with what you eat. There are many reasons why people develope Hashi's. Sometimes it's just genetics.

Going gluten-free for one month is not a fair trial. It needs to be at least 3 months - with no cheating! Then see how you feel when you start eating it again.

It would help if you can get your TSH suppressed, too. And try taking selenium for the antibodies.

It would be a good idea to get your vit D, vit B12, folate and ferritin tested, too. These need to be optimal for your body to be able to use the hormone you're giving it. And it is hormone, not drugs. Taking it for life is not such a big deal. It becomes automatic after a while. And you will die without it. :)

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its not mainly genetics.. there is a reason for expressing bad genes in later life. its stress and metal state. yes all autoimmune diseases are unknown cause for modern medicine; yet people who have it are stressed, depressed, and had moments that they wish to die. and these same people who practiced meditation and healthy life style which affected them tremendously to cure the autoimmune disease. I have heard stories and I am welling to be part of it. the fact putting some synthetic hormone is the only problem for me right now.(I am all about natrual things).

I agree with you knowledge is a big deal.. I even did not do exams lately.. so stressed that I want to take a break and heal.. stress is what devolped hashimatos in me.. I know the reason now I have to fix it. instead of studying I am researching freak now.. ugh! bad timing for me. yet I know everything is for a reason. now i know what is it that I want to do in the future.

dieing without taking synthetic thing. that is turture. I am being dramatic.. I know... I am still accepting what is happening to me... its hard.. I am just happy that I have some community here that I can talk to and complain. thank you guys.

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I would continue taking levothyroxine. 'Normal' is o.k. for undiagnosed people (healthy). If hypothyroid or Hashimotos we should have sufficient levothyroxine to raise T4 and T3 towards the upper part of the range. T4 (levothyroxine) is the inactive hormone and converts to T3 (the active hormone required by our billions of receptor cells and which allows us to function normally). Your T4 is low because your body isn't producing enough so our TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) rises to try to stimulate our thyroid gland to produce more hormones.

The aim of your doctor (if he/she understands about the Thyroid Gland) is for your TSH to be around 1 or lower. (not to be kept anywhere in the 'normal' range).

I shall give you a couple of links. Hashi's patients usually find that if they go gluten-free that it helps reduce their antibodies.

You have an Autoimmune Thyroid Disease called Hashimotos:-

When you go for your next blood test it should be as early as possible and fast (you can drink water). Leave about 24 hours between your last dose of levo and the test and take it afterwards. Always get a print-out of your results with the ranges. Ask GP to test Vitamin B12, Vit D, iron, ferritin and folate too as we can be deficient.

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Thanks Shaws!

I have checked my vitamin and B12 iron, ferritin and folate.

they are all in the range but low. I will check them again with vit D.

I will go gluten-free the whole February and take levothyroxine regularely. I will keep a clean diet. no kelp supplement. I will detoxify my body with blue greens; chlorella and spirulina. also drink water and lemon. I will track my PH by ph stripes that I have purchased recently. I will keep walking every morning.. since I am morning person, I can wake up at 4 am even in winter time. what else can I do? I WANT TO BE HEALTHY! I am twenty. I need energy to study and be happy. sigh I am mad at today's doctors. they know what they know and that is it!!!


The fact is that you will soon know more than most doctors because you will have reached a nice healthy plateau and be aware of when you might need a tiny increase/decrease. It's great to feel well again after nightmares of people being misdiagnosed/undiagnosed/undertreated. You can find a way through the maze by knowledge :)

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Vitamins in range are " normal" but if low in the range are far from optimal when you have this illness.

Still you have youth and more important the right attitude.Good luck.

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