Should I ask GP for more tests

Hi. I am new to this site- and new to considering all things thyroid related so please excuse any ignorance I may have!

I have been having health problems for 3 years now (I am 38, female). My health 'journey' is a very long and winding road and I'm not sure how much detail to put down but I'll try summarise.

My main symptom over all this time has been fatigue- at times I have felt so fatigued it was as though I'd been drugged- I literally couldn't do anything for very long periods. I still struggle with fatigue but having made many (MANY!) life changes, I can usually just about manage- but I feel I'm not able to live my life 'normally'.

I have also had skin issues- it all started with tiny, very painful blisters on my face (around nose and 'laughter lines). That stopped when I eliminated gluten but since I get a rash on my neck and chest, which I still get, especially if I am struggling. I have also had abdominal problems- intense pain and bloating, making me look 7 months pregnant, which I no longer experience thankfully. I've had loads of other weird symptoms- tingly fingers, flaky skin, anxiety symptoms but not actually feeling anxious (racing heart etc). I also need at least 9 hours of sleep- any less and I feel as though I've had 2 hours. I track my sleep and it's usually quite good.

All of these symptoms have led me to have a lot of tests- some of which I've fought for and some have been pushed more by the medics. The things that have been suggested/ruled out are- coeliacs (blood test and endoscopy), endometriosis and ovarian cancer (laporoscopy) and HIV (blood test). I have been found to have 2 large fibroids- both outside the uterus so have been thought to be non problematic.

While I was waiting for surgery to test for endometriosis/ovarian cancer, it was suggested I try the contraceptive pill, continuously for 9 weeks. I did this and my symptoms changed quite instantly. The gastro issues stopped and have not come back and my fatigue started to very gradually pick up. I stopped the pill and things didn't return so kept off it. The Dr just said it was a hormonal imbalance, rectified by the pill and that was me discharged. Cured apparently!

Right now, I'm having a bit of a flare up (neck rash and bad fatigue) but in general, the past few months is the best I've felt in these past 3 years. But I'm still far from where I'd like to be and where I feel I should be for a 38 year old who takes very good care of themselves. My lifestyle is so healthy- I really feel I should be bounding about! I had to reduce my hours to part time (3 days a week) and need my 2 recovery days or I just can't function. I can't do many activities and cancel lots of things. I do feel I can't live a normal life. I see my friends with children and working and exercising, going out etc and I just can't fathom how they do it. I struggle to just work 3 days.

I am seeing a physio for hip pain. She is also trained in Chinese medicine and has quite a holistic/functional medicine outlook on things. She has been surprised at how blocked my lymph nodes feel and has been working a lot around my neck. This week, she asked about my thyroid and asked if I'd ever had it tested- I had and was told it was 'normal' but since she raised this, it made me wonder and I looked back at my results. I have TSH and Free T4 results from Aug 2014 and May 2015- Free T4 was 13 both times but my TSH was 2.4 and 4. I just wondered if this was something that would be worth looking in to?

To be honest, I am very reluctant to go back to a medic. I have lost all faith in western medicine. I feel I was made out to be a hypochondriac when the reality is, I avoid going to the Dr; I hate going and always worry I'm wasting their time. I haven't been back since I had the laparoscopy a year ago, even though I still struggle. I had a really stressful time with them raising the possibility of ovarian cancer and endometriosis and feel I went through many unnecessary procedures, without anyone really sitting for a minute to fully understand what was going on with me. I feel I've got on much better since I've taken my own control of things and used other ways to improve my health- yoga, meditation, becoming vegan etc. BUT if there is an underlying thyroid condition that could be helped with medication, I would like to know.

I would really appreciate anyone's advice on whether it would be worthwhile to do further testing for thyroid function.

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6 Replies

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  • Welcome to our forum and if you have the ranges these would be helpful as labs differ so we need ranges as well as the result.

    If you can afford a Full Thyroid Function Test, we have recommended labs and some do pin-prick ones.

    You'd test at the earliest time and fast (you can drink water). If you go to a place to draw blood and have test afterwards, it has to be the very earliest too.

    Ask for TSH, T4, T3, Free T4, Free T3 and thyroid antibodies.

    Post the results with the ranges on a new post for comments from members.

    It is worth looking into as nowadays, doctors know less than most members on this forum, through the hard way of being undiagnosed/undertreated.

    I was one of the undiagnosed but had other 'diagnoses' and treatment and for one I had treatment under anaesthetic but didn't have what was suggested whatsoever.

    thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/testin...

    thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/testin...

  • Hi

    Thanks for replying.

    I will look into the labs for further testing- is this because this type of testing isn't done routinely by the NHS?

    I posted the ranges of the tests I had done a while back...Free T4 was 13 both times but my TSH was 2.4 and most recently 4 range 0.2-4.5 (this was now 2 years ago though).

    Since reading more posts and following the links, I have decided to pay for the full test- seems a small price to get a more definite answer as to what is going on.

    Thanks

  • Hi weekari, You do have an autoimmune issue going on. A TSH over 3 is very meaningful. All other symptoms can lead back to the autoimmune condition. There are many odd links too numerous to mention but I'll place a video in here which even explains the fibroid issues. The tests if they include the antibodies will be quite helpful. Deficiencies often follow low thyroid, perhaps starting with B12. Some of these nutrients are necessary to transport thyroid hormone. Almost all hormones have an active and an inactive manifestation. It's the bodies' way of protecting a balance.

    There are so many complexities but you should learn as much as you can.

    This man puts out very informative videos.

  • That video is great thank you. It's fascinating. Although I'd not heard of this being put in this way, I was aware of the impact of stress on various systems and impacting overall health. This is what led me to make so many lifestyle changes- for the past year I've been on a gluten free, plant based diet and taking most of the supplements recommended. Plus I meditate and practice yoga daily and have worked to reduce toxins, and external stressors. I think gain I'm left wondering why I don't feel better than I do.

    Thanks again :)

  • Have you see the videos by David Clark? He has short summaries showing 20 different reasons for low thyroid even if labs are good. I'll place video #1 about serotonin here and if you go to You Tube, tap the low corner on right, you can see the rest. They are only five minutes each but he covers a lot of ground. For instance, #2 a dopamine problem, 7 and 8, antibodies, 11, progesterone deficiency, 12, deficient co factors. 13, low conversion, 22, vitamin A deficiency. Each really have value. He doesn't go into the treatments but goes into the cause.

  • Thank you! I do find all fascinating which helps. I've been taking supplements for quite a while now (b12, d3, magnesium and turmeric). Its just recently I've wondered if my very healthy lifestyle and adaptations are masking how much my body is still struggling...getting a clearer picture through some more specific blood tests will help. At least to rule things out. I've thought for the past 2 years at least that is been autoimmune in nature. I've done everything I could to help with that.

    Thanks again for the information. I will watch the video later today knowledge is power as they say!

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