No Diagnosis. Thyroid Nodules and Antibodies... Help!

Hi,

I'm a 23 years old female and have had symptoms that seem to mimic a sluggish thyroid for a few years now. I went to get a comprehensive health check back in October 2015, and had some blood tests done as well as an ultrasound.

Three nodules were found in my left thyroid, one larger complex one measuring 5.6 x 6.9mm (liquid and solid) and two smaller ones. I was told these were probably benign and to just monitor them every 6 months (I have not yet had a follow up ultrasound). My blood test levels were generally okay with thyroid hormones within the normal limits, although they didn't test for everything:

T3 - 107.95 (58-160ng/dl)

FT4 - 0.97 (0.7-1.5ng/dl)

TSH - 2.0026 (0.35-5)

After becoming a little more alarmed I did some further research and decided to return to the doctors to request some additional blood tests and checks for antibodies in January 2016.

Results below:

FT3 - 3.41 (2-4.4)

T4 - 10.8 (5.1-14.1)

T3 uptake - 36.51 (29.5-41)

TSI - Negative 0.30

TGab - 22.37 (0.01-4.61 iu/ml)

TPOAb - 1.44 (0.01-5.61 iu/ml)

Although they said my levels were fine, I can see that my TGab antibody count was very high. Also, as far as I'm aware, even a small presence of antibodies is not good news.

The doctors seem to think I am okay and no treatments are needed.

However I am not feeling great and really want some advice or suggestions that could bring me closer to a treatment method or diagnosis.

Oh and a final note - I also tested positive for rheumatoid arthritis in my original health check, but don't feel any symptoms. Not sure if that could be related.

Any help would be hugely appreciated! Many thanks!

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10 Replies

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  • Welcome to the forum, MissMonkey.

    TGab isn't very high but it is positive for autoimmune thyroid disease (Hashimoto's) which usually progresses to hypothyroidism, although it may take years/decades to do so. You may be able to slow progression by adopting 100% gluten-free diet.

    chriskresser.com/the-gluten...

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

    Your FT4 and FT3 levels are currently good and don't indicate thyroid function but with positive antibodies you should have annual tests.

    Thyroid nodules are very slow growing and yours are very small so 6 monthly monitoring is more than adequate. Nodules usually aren't palpable until they are 1cm.

    Ask your GP to check ferritin, vitamin D, B12 and folate. They are commonly low/deficient in Hashimoto's patients and can cause musculoskeletal pain, fatigue and low mood.

    _______________________________________________________________________________

    I am not a medical professional and this information is not intended to be a substitute for medical guidance from your own doctor. Please check with your personal physician before applying any of these suggestions.

  • Hi Clutter,

    Thanks a lot for your reply, I have already started eliminating gluten and plan to cut it out 100%.

    Is there no chance to totally end hashimotos? ideally I'm looking to repair my health before more damage is done.

    It's strange because my symptoms really do resemble hypothyroidism. I have hair loss, sensitivity to cold, tingling arms and feet, constipation, fatigue, brain fog. I just want to recover from it all as its really bringing me down emotionally!

    Would you suggest I go to see a thyroid specialist or search for a different kind of doctor that may help with autoimmune disorders?

    I will get those tests done as soon as I can.

    Thanks.

  • MissMonkey, your thyroid antibodies are mildly elevated so they may be reversed and Hashimoto's may not then progress to hypothyroidism. Now is a good time to start g-f, before the thyroid is damaged because damage is not reversible.

    There is no treatment for autoimmune diseases. Treatment is for the low thyroid hormone it causes. Many UK doctors don't acknowledge that having positive antibodies when thyroid levels are normal causes symptoms so it may not be worth seeing a specialist. My GP and surgeon kept telling me that symptoms were non-thyroidal because I was euthyroid but symptoms improved immediately after thyroidectomy so I'm convinced they were wrong.

    _______________________________________________________________________________

    I am not a medical professional and this information is not intended to be a substitute for medical guidance from your own doctor. Please check with your personal physician before applying any of these suggestions.

  • rheum art is also an auto immune condition. Unfortunately auto immune diseases cluster together like teenagers at a country bus stop. Well done spotting all this so early. Before you go on a gluten free diet, do a blood test for celiac disease - this is another auto immune disease. You can get them on the internet, but yr gp might agree to give you one if u have any gut symptoms like bloating or constipation etc.

    Do you have auto immune diseases in your immediate family, if so, which ones?

    And also be aware that with hypo antbodies you need to be v v careful about pregnancy, sometging the nhs hasn't woken up to. When or if u want a babe get your nutrient levels beforehand to optimal, the b vits, d, and iron especially. make sure your tsh is monitored thruout pregnancy because you will be at higher risk of miscarriage, premature birth, autism and post natal thyroiditis ... those things can be avoided with close monitoring.

  • Hi aspmama,

    That's really interesting about pregnancy, and I will definately keep it in mind. However, I am not planning on having a child at the moment and wish to be in better health once I do. I really want to tackle these problems and symptoms as early as I can.

    Yes, I do have bloating and digestive problems too although these have eased off since I've started using probiotics. I read that blood type may link to high antibodies - I am O. My grandmother recently passed away from leukemia, and also suffered with arthritis and thyroid problems (hyper) in later life. All of which link to autoimmune disorders.

    My symptoms really resemble hypothyroidism and I've had really bad hair thinning and fatigue for a few years now.

  • If you are in the process going gluten free then don't get the check for celiac. You have to eat quite a lot every day for about 3 weeks before the test or it will be negative.

    Jo xx

  • I had nodules in my thyroid glands and had to do a biopsy and nuclear test it turned out they were Follicular and it might become malignant so I had them removed.

  • Hi missmonkey,

    You symptoms echo mine before they eventually found B12 and Vit D deficiency last year.

    Not everything is down to Thyroid disease although the symptoms are similar.

    Get these and Folate checked and put the results with ranges on the PAS

    Site as well as here.

    Even if your B12 is in range, but low, you may well benefit greatly with supplements.

    Take care

    👍

  • There's lots of good info on this website:

    thyroidpharmacist.com

    Also consider an autoimmune diet like this one:

    thepaleomom.com/autoimmunit...

  • Thank you for helping spread the word for the functional medicine approach to hashimoto's. I think it is really all we have because mainstream medicine only gives you missing hormones and doesn't address reversing autoimmune disease.