Test Results - Help with Interpretation Please!

Test Results - Help with Interpretation Please!

Hi

I now have the test results back as follows:

Serum Free T4 Level = 15.2 pmol/L

Serum TSH level = 7.82 mU/L High

Serum Ferritin = 271 ug/L

There may be more results here that are relevant but I'm not sure what to look for exactly?. Any help will be much appreciated.

Thank you

Pauline

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14 Replies

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  • PaulineB2016 What other tests were there? And can you include the reference ranges for everything please, they vary from lab to lab so we need them, although it's obvious your TSH is high.

  • There's an entire page of results so not sure which ones are relevant?

    Serum TSH level = 7.82 mU/L High (0.27-4.2)

  • We need TSH, FT4, FT3, TPO antibodies, TG antibodies, folate, ferritin, Vit D, B12 for starters. Was it a Blue Horizon test or a test done through your GP?

  • Can I scan the results and post ?

  • Yes you can scan them, you'll have to edit your first post to 'add a photo' but it really needs to be big enough and clear enough to be read.

  • Thanks Susie, I've just scanned and uploaded to my first post. Please let me know if you can read it ok?! Thanks for your help so far :)

  • PaulineB2016 This is in no way directed at you but good grief, what a silly set of results - there are no ranges for most of those so how can your GP know where you are with reference to any ranges!

    What was he looking for when he ordered those?

    You have picked out the only ones that can really be commented on (unless anyone else knows about some of the others and can interpret them without ranges).

    The normal ranges we see for ferritin can be something like 20-150, or another one goes up to 300 I think, so really it's hard to know with yours at 271ug/L but I have found this from South Tees hospital

    "FERRITIN guide to interpretation:

    Low: Less than 15 ug/L

    Borderline: 16 – 40 ug/L

    Normal: 41 – 400 ug/L

    High: Greater than 400"

    Yet Wikipedia says this:

    "Normal ranges

    A normal ferritin blood level, referred to as the reference interval is determined by many testing laboratories.

    The ranges for ferritin can vary between laboratories but are usually between

    30–300 ng/mL (=μg/L) for males, and

    18–115 ng/mL (=μg/L) for females."

    So according to one you're nicely within the normal range, but the other means you are way over range. It really does need clarification because labs differ with their ranges and too much iron is as bad as too little.

    Your FT4 again is impossible to say, some ranges start at 9, some 12 so we don't know if yours is mid-range or low.

    However, the one thing that does stand out is your high, over range TSH. Your thyroid is really struggling and along with your symptoms indicate hypothyroidism. Some Doctors would have already started their patient on Levothyroxine with those results. Making you wait another three months is cruel.

    Do you have any previous thyroid test results to compare and maybe show a rising TSH?

    I think you should go back and ask for a trial of Levothyroxine, if necessary see a different doctor.

  • SeasideSusie thanks so much for your message. I'm posting on behalf of my husband so the results and interpretation are for a male. I decided to take some action for him as he really is just too unwell. The results I posted were the first ones so there is nothing to compare to. They were testing for a variety of things so I expect they may not be specific to thyroid?

    So now we're wondering how we can bypass the GP (he's been to the GP at least 10 times in the last 6 months). We have Bupa insurance but haven't called to check what the process is. He is really at the end of his patience dealing with insomnia, depression and fatigue. This has been going on for over 3 years and possibly longer. It's only in the last year though that I've pushed him to get help. That started with antidepressants and ended there really in terms of what the GP did even though he kept going back. He fainted at Paddington station a month ago so I immediately made the appointment to get the blood tests done. We are not going to wait 3 months. I can't wait 3 months! Like you said it's cruel and it's so awful to watch him suffering like he is and not knowing why or what I can do to help him.

    Is it worth getting the blood test done from blue horizon? or should we try to get a private referral to someone? Or should we persist at the GP and maybe try a different person at the same surgery?

    We are in Berkshire. Thank you again for all your help so far it's very much appreciated.

    Pauline

  • Oh dear PaulineB2016 I'm so sorry for what your husband is going through. I really do despair at our so called health care at times and I fully understand how frustrating this is. In the last 18 months, because of GPs who don't seem to care, I have paid for my son to see a neurologist and have a brain scan because of the ridiculously long wait when my son was told 'I don't think it's a brain tumour', self referred to a breast specialist when I was offered ibuprofen for discomfort and a lump despite a very long history of cysts, and now I've just bypassed the very long wait to see a lung consultant because my GP won't treat my lung infections, despite agreeing they are there and causing further damage to lungs, and I see the consultant privately in 3 weeks' time. It's not right but the alternative is unthinkable.

    I don't think those tests are particularly specific to thyroid, although the GP was obviously checking it out as a matter of course perhaps to rule it out?? Well, it has ruled it in!

    (By the way, the ferritin looks OK for a male :) )

    What to do? Well, you could go for the Blue Horizon Thyroid Plus Eleven which covers all thyroid tests including antibodies, vitamins and minerals and that's a good start. You should get the kit within 2 or 3 days of ordering and the results within a couple of days of sending the sample back.

    You could email louise.warville@thyroiduk.org.uk and ask for the list of thyroid friendly doctors/endos, choose those who are within travelling distance and ask on the forum for members recommendations. You may need a referral from your GP so hopefully that will be forthcoming. I would let the GP know that you feel unsupported, there is something obviously very wrong and to wait three months for a retest is prolonging the agony so you feel you have no alternative but to take matters in your own hands.

    You could also, of course, get the BH test done, come back here with the results and, with the suggestions of experienced members consider self treating.

  • Hi Susie. I feel for you too! I myself have also experienced first hand the difficulties of dealing with the NHS when I had 2 slipped disks and Boone would listen to me, kept sending me away with nurofen! Finally went private and got an MRI and everyonewas surprised except me!! Anyway thanks for your advice I've passed everything onto my husbandWe will try the GP first I think and then if that doesn't work then do the BH test. Will no doubt be back with further questions and updates :) thanks again and all the best for you and your son.

  • Ah Pauline, thank you. He's a big boy now (43), just had surgery last week for another problem and he waited 2 years for that to be sorted - he told them he didn't want to be on painkillers all his life and wanted the problem sorted - good for him! He has more b***s than me when talking to doctors (and that's what his surgery was to do with :) ) but he was talking to the consultant not the GP so no danger of being told to find another surgery which is why I am careful with my GP.

    Our NHS is wonderful when it works, it's just that some parts of it are broken. My surgery doesn't like spending money on referrals. I asked last year to see a lung consultant and was told no and given a gym referral instead - go figure! I had to pay for the gym myself, I got it at a reduced rate but I don't think it cost the surgery very much, if anything. And after 32 sessions and £64 I didn't feel any better for it!

    Good luck with the next GP visit, I hope you get somewhere and your hubby gets on the road to recovery.

  • I've found the TSH and FT4 but nothing in the test looks like any of the others you mention. It was done at the GP.

  • If you can find out which lab did the testing you might be able to find their reference ranges online. Some NHS labs do publish their ranges.

    Alternatively you could phone the lab yourself and ask how you can get the information. If you wanted to be really cheeky you could ask them to email their reference ranges to you.

  • Thanks Humanbean It's annoying that the results are pretty much useless as they are. I'm on a mission now to sort that out!

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