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Thyroid UK
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Male ~ Tiredness & Fatigue

I have just discovered this forum and was hoping someone can help / advise me.

I am a 59 year old male. I was diagnosed with Under Active Thyroid in 2012. Initially I was on 75 micrograms LEVOTHYROXINE. In 2015 this was upped to 100 mcg. I had my annual Blood Test in March this year and everything was fine. However, 2 months ago I started to experience severe Tiredness and Fatigue. My Arms and Legs feel like Jelly and I have been having Headaches and Dizzy spells. I went to the GP and was referred to have a Fasting Blood Test. My TSH level was 7.46 (Range 0.35 - 5.5). All the other reading are in Range. e.g. FREE T4 15.8 ( 1019.8). The GP increased my dose to 125 mcg. That was 10 days ago. I still feel CR@P !

Any idea when will the medication kick in ? I am due to go back for another Blood Test in early September. Any suggestions for easing my ailments.

Thanks in anticipation

8 Replies

Your TSH level is well over the posted range (.35-5.5) and here we aim to get TSH to 1 or even less. So you are far from ideal there. And you didn't get results of your Free T3 which is ultra important - another virtually useless NHS lab! Many here test via private labs (go to Thyroid UK for links). Also important: your nutrient levels. So B12, Vit D, folate, and ferritin. We often suffer malabsorption problems so these result in deficient levels, which I turn effect our ability to convert our dosage effectively.


Many Thanks for the info Rusty. It appears that I will have to go to one of the Private Labs and take it from there.



Link to Private Testing through Thyroid UK's main website. Blue Horizon Thyroid 11 covers all the Thyroid Testing and the vits and minerals.

Take a look around the website for more understanding of the Thyroid. How do you take your Thyroid Meds ? Do you have stomach/gut issues ?


Obviously you need to know your T3 level.

You may not be converting Levo. Many don't.

Levo didn't increase my T3 by even 0.1, therefore a complete waste of time. I'm now on NDT & feeling benefits.

Have you had Testosterone level tested?

Your GP should test that for you, but as with Thyroid & B12, don't take "normal" as an answer!

UK "reference ranges" are way behind other nations.

Insist on a print out, get your results. They will tell you 9 nmol/L is fine. It's not!

These guys will help you.



If the cause of your thyroid problem is due to autoimmune thyroid disease, also called Hashimoto's then you are very likely to also have low vitamin levels. Always get actual figures and ranges.

Really need to test for thyroid antibodies - this is test for Hashimoto's

Come back here with results for advice

Loads of us have to get private tests, most popular are Medichecks or Blue Horizon

All thyroid tests should be done as early as possible in morning and fasting and don't take Levo in the 24 hours prior to test.

Assume you know that Levo should be taken on empty stomach and then nothing apart from water for at least an hour after. Many take on waking, but can be more convenient and possibly more effective taken at bedtime


Unfortunately it takes awhile before the medicine kicks in. So it may take awhile for you to physically feel better.


There are two most obvious possibilities for what has happened to you - feeling fine for several years, and then suddenly becoming ill and your dose being inadequate.

1) You most likely have Hashimotos. The vast majority of hypothyroid people do. This is an autoimmune disease where antibodies attack your thyroid. This means it becomes progressively worse and less able to produce it's own hormone. This means you will regularly need increases to your dose to catch up with your own failing thyroid.

2) Many people find themselvesdoing well on Levothyroxine for many years, but then almost overnight it becomes less effective. In this case you may find that you need one of the other formats of thyroid hormone. These are T3 which you may be able to get on the NHS, or NDT (Natural dessicated thyroid) which cannot be got on the NHS and is usually bought without prescription from overseas.

The freeT3 test would give you more of a sense of whether T3 is necessary. T3 is the active form of the hormone that your body needs. Levothyroxine contains T4 which is a storage form, and your own body has to convert it into the active form. Often people who are ill struggle with this conversion, and end up with a much lower freeT3 than their freeT4.

Overall, Your TSH is rather high. Usually people feel well with it at 1 or below, it's not good enough just to be inside the range. So you may need 2 or 3 increases to get it into good order. It takes several weeks to settle down on a new dose, and sometimes you will feel worse before you feel better. I have even felt differences with a new dose a couple of months later.


I would like to thank everyone for taking time to answer my query. I will be exploring the Medichecks & Blue Horizon sites.

Fingers crossed !


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