Thyroid UK
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GP appointment Tuesday

Hi, for a few years I have been convinced I have hypothyroidism. Regular tests always told normal. February this year diagnosed gluten intolerant huge relief as feeling awful, at the time gp says thyroid low but 2 points above treatment threshold re test annually will need treatment within next 5 years. Level is 14 I believe ft4, treatment at 12. Strong family history and sister. My symptoms, I could sleep for ever but never feel like I have, always cold, dry eyes, skin, hair when washed or brushed I lose loads, nails are dreadful. Gp also tells me been low for a long time. I guess because going gluten free made me feel so much better I thought the other symptoms may go too.

What my question is , is will they treat when the number is above their normal treatment level or am I wasting my time? I'm going to ask for a printout of my blood test results.

Sorry for the long post and thank you in advance.

9 Replies

Hi dotster,

Definitely get that printout and post on here with the ranges (numbers in brackets). People can help when we see what tests have been done.

Many doctors look at TSH and wait for it to be above range, but as you say, it sounds as if yours looks at FT4 and waits for it to be low, which doesn't make sense to me. Maybe he's looking at FT3 as that's the active hormone. So - get that printout and don't be fobbed off with comments like 'normal' or 'in range'.

It also sounds as if your GP has been delaying treatment which is sad.

You may find it helpful to read up a bit about thyroid problems and a good place to start is the Thyroid UK website at

There's a section 'About the Thyroid' which is helpful and includes pages with symptoms.

Oh and - that's not a long post - I've seen plenty far longer !

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The numbers in many cases mean FA I'm afraid. I've finally found a decent doctor after so many wombles, and have been prescribed Sythroid along with hormones for adrenal fatigue. My TSH, T3 and T4 (and RT3) all looked close to middling on paper (except lowish T3) however I feel the sythroid has totally turned my life around. If you exhibit symptoms of hypo then I would put more stock in that than the results on paper in some cases. Hypothyroid Mom and Dr Lams' sites both provide excellent help.

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If your TSH is above 3 - in many countries you'd be diagnosed. In the UK it is 10 which is ridiculous and some may never reach that magic number.

Blood tests have to be at the very earliest, fasting and if you were taking thyroid hormone replacements you'd allow a 24 hours gap approx between last dose and test and take it afterwards.

Ask GP for TSH, T4, T3, Free T4, Free T3 and thyroid antibodies. B12, Vit D, iron, ferritin and folate. Get a print-out of the ranges and post for comments.

You can say you've taken advice from the NHS Choices for information about dysfunctions of the thyroid gland,


Since discovered my the is 2.29


You can give him a copy of the following:-

He should not rely on TSH alone but FT4 and FT3 gives a clearer picture. Tick off your symptoms as well. (he still might want to stick to guidelines but they don't always pick up the patient is hypo),


You sound like you have reason to ask for a trial but as you have been tested it's prudent to consider what they show. The fact that he has mentioned it is good as he he is realising it could become more of a problem is he aware of your family history? If not then let him know

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Make sure to have your blood test first thing in the morning. Your thyroid levels vary during the day, and you are more likely to get blood test results that will get you treated if you have the test first thing. Also you could fast overnight (drinking water is fine). You could also try doing lots of exercise the day/evening before. Anything to get those results into the 'please treat me' range.

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Ok lovely people I popped into the doctors for a copy of the results from Feb they show free t4 14.7 range 12 to 22, serum tsh 2.29 range 0.27 to 4.2

Not sure if that is any more helpful but when I looked at the algorithm that shaws kindly posted is says hypo

Thanks again for your help


I had my appointment this morning with a locum GP. I have noticed over the past 2 weeks I have what feels to be a lump in my throat and when I wear my motorcycle helmet it feels like the strap is choking me despite it never being adjusted and having no problems for 3 years. Anyway GP thinks one side of my thyroid may have some swelling. She wants another thyroid blood test and says I need to be seen with the results. She said I may need to have my an ultra sound scan on my thyroid. She did note all my symptoms and family history but was very non committal on it all. When I go back it will be to a different GP so we shall see.


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