Thyroid UK

help with results plz

would you interpret my results as having an underactive thyroid. my first set of tests were done about 6 weeks ago ad the results are

tsh level 6.92 free t4 9.8

my DR put me on levothyroxine at dose of 50. the reason i ask is although i am so tired and i have so many aches and pains, i have not put on any weight which i thought always happens with underactive thyroid.

i have just had my second test which will include t3, but no results till next week.

thank you in advance for advice

7 Replies

When you had your second blood test, did you follow this procedure which I think you may not have done as you are newly diagnosed. This procedure allows the TSH to remain at its highest as food and time of day affect the result and the doctor might adjust dose unnecessarily due to the TSH only.

The blood test should be the very earliest possible and don't eat before it but you can drink water. Also leave approx 24 hours between your last dose of levo and the test (the day before put your meds somewhere else so you don't make a mistake) and take hormones afterwards.

Also levo should be taken first thing with one glass of water and don't eat for around an hour. Food can interfere with the uptake of levo. If you prefer you can take levo at bedtime, as long as you've left about 2.5 to 3 hours after eating.

If GP hasn't tested B12, Vit D, iron, ferritin and folate ask for these the next time a test is due. We can be deficient which can also give symptoms.

If people gain weight it is usually very slow to happen. Some people don't gain weight.

Re your clinical symptoms, i.e. pain, fatigue etc are clinical symptoms and your doctor should have raised your 50mcg dose to 75mcg and every six weeks you should have an increase until your symptoms resolve and you feel much better. The aim should be a TSH of 1 or lower not somewhere in range.

Always get a print-out of your results with the ranges for your own records and you can post if you have any queries. It is a learning curve if we want to recover so we have to read and ask questions.


hi, test was done this morning at 9.30. i didnt eat from about 9.30 last night, but i did have a few red bull drinks before the test, cant function without it. will this effect the test? i didnt take meds today either


lizdarragh One can of Red Bull contains 80mg of caffeine. How many do you normally drink and do you have it anywhere near your thyroid meds? If you do it will affect absorption of your Levo.

Also, do you have reference ranges for the tests, as they vary from lab to lab it's impossible to know if your FT4 is under range or just within range. Your TSH is probably high by most ranges we see here.


hi suzie, thats the only results i have. yes i do drink red bull with levo. about 2 cans in the morning. i will stop now, thanks for the heads up.

this is all new to me so i really appreciate any help


You're on a learning curve lizdarragh and we've all been there.

When you have tests done, always ask your surgery for a print out. You are entitled to them under the Data Protection Act but your surgery may make a small charge for printing. If they want to know why just say it's for your own records but they really shouldn't ask. If they're reluctant to give you a print out or want to charge a silly amount, then just get them to give you the results verbally but make sure you get the reference ranges too.

Shaws gave you advice on preparing for a blood test above, so follow that for the best results.

Any questions, just ask, members are happy to help :)


Caffeine should be avoided. Coffee which many drink early a.m. also affects the uptake.

Thyroid hormones should only be taken on an empty stomach with 1 glass of water only. This ensures as much as possible that they arrive in our stomach to be absorbed. If we don't drink sufficient water the tablets can swell in our gullet.


lizdarragh Idk why they sometimes don't tell you about such a basic bit of the whole thing but you're not the first and won't be the last. :-)

You must take levo on an empty stomach, water only, an hour before food and/or two/three hours after, and well away from iron or calcium. I set my alarm a couple of hours before I have to get up in the morning, take my meds and go back to sleep so I can have a cuppa as soon as I'm up. Some people take it at bedtime but I sometimes get peckish so I don't do that anymore. Some people say this helps them sleep well.

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