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Thyroid UK
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Is tingling feet a sign of Hypothyroidism

Hi Everyone,

I have recently been diagnosed with Hypothyroidism which I had to get done privately as my current GP practice seem not to listen to anything I say. I have a lot of symptoms which worry me and one of these is problems with my feet. They feel tingly, cold and are getting painful when I try to walk for more than about half a mile. I have been trying to explore the possibility of this being down to a B12 deficiency but that is not going well with the GP practice. I'm just wondering if any other people have problems with their feet that might be down to Hypothyroidism. The GP practice finally agreed to start treating my Hypothyroidism they only started me on 25mcg of Levothyroxine which I have been on for about a month with no improvement in any symptoms during that time.

I have an appointment with the GP on Monday so just had a blood test done. The results are below:

Thyroid function test

Serum TSH level 2.06 mu/L [0.35 - 4.94]

Serum free T4 level 13.2 pmol/L [9.0 - 19.0]

I want to be prepared for this GP appointment and am hoping she can at least increase the medication to 50mcg what could I say to get her to agree to this please.

Also if anyone has any ideas on the problems with my feet that would be appreciated. Thanks so much in advance for reading.

10 Replies
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You may struggle to persuade GP to increase, but results to indicate you need to. TSH should be around 1 or less when on Levo

You could email Louise at Thyroid UK for copy of article by Prof Toft outlining this

Louise. roberts@thyroiduk.org.uk

Has GP tested for high thyroid antibodies? If not ask that they do so to see if cause is autoimmune thyroid disease also called Hashimoto's

You also need vitamin D testing. Very common to be far too low

When vitamin D is low its common for B vitamins to be low. You might find adding good quality vitamin B complex improves feet

drgominak.com/sleep/vitamin...

If you start taking vitamin B complex, or any supplements containing biotin, remember to stop these 3-5 days before any blood tests, as biotin can falsely affect test results

endo.confex.com/endo/2016en...

endocrinenews.endocrine.org...

You mentioned you are being evaluated for coeliac, the only reliable test is an endoscopy.

But with Hashimoto's only about 5% are coeliac, but over 80% find strictly gluten beneficial

thyroidpharmacist.com/artic...

thyroidpharmacist.com/artic...

amymyersmd.com/2017/02/3-im...

chriskresser.com/why-changi...

scdlifestyle.com/2014/08/th...

You mentioned ferritin, this needs to be minimum of 70 for thyroid hormones to work

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As you noted.... a b 12 insufficiency can cause tingling feet as can diabetes. Benfotiamine (B 1) can be very helpful to diabetes sufferers as it gives another pathway for the body to process glucose and often is very helpful with nerve problems. B 12 should be checked and.... if your doc won't order it, maybe get your own labs done? Also, your feet being cold? are your hands/nose also cold? I suffered this when I needed more thyroid medication. Have you tracked your body temp? Normal body temp at 3 - 4 pm should be your goal. That dose of levo that 'they' have you on is so tiny.

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Carmel13n,

Painful feet can be a symptom of hypothyroidism. thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/about_...

You are a little undermedicated. Ask your GP to increase dose to see whether symptoms improve.

The goal of Levothyroxine is to restore the patient to euthyroid status. For most patients that will be when TSH is 0.35 - 1.0 with FT4 in the upper range. FT4 needs to be in the upper range in order that sufficient T3 is converted. Read Treatment Options in thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/about_... Email louise.roberts@thyroiduk.org if you would like a copy of the Pulse article to show your GP.

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Hi SlowDragon , Clutter and phoenix1234567,

Thanks so much for your replies. Yes I did think that was a very low starter dose. Hopefully the GP will agree to an increase. I will bring the article with me and a symptom list and hope it won't be a big battle to get an increase as I am currently feeling very ill. It took me from July until last month and seeing a second GP at the practice to give me treatment using the private test I got done myself that showed I have Hashimotos and my last antibody level was

Serum thyroid peroxidase antibody concentration 441.00 iu/mL [< 5.61]

Maybe I have been wrong about the low B12 and the problems with my feet are due to the hypothyroidism then. That would be a relief. I do have Vitamin D supplements is it ok to start taking 5,000 iu a day as the weather getting worse now. The ferritin I get confused about as was a bit worried about iron overload My last result was low at

46.6 ug/l 13.00 - 150.00 that was in July so that has probably dropped again.

I don't think I've been fully tested for diabetes just had a blood glucose test which was normal. No-one in my family has diabetes would that make it less likely.

Thanks for all the information too on gluten free I'll start reading. Thank you all so much for your replies.

Reply

Carmel13n,

Thyroid peroxidase antibodies are positive for autoimmune thyroid disease (Hashimoto's). There is no cure for Hashimoto's which causes 90% of hypothyroidism. Levothyroxine treatment is for the low thyroid levels it causes. Many people have found that 100% gluten-free diet is helpful in reducing Hashi flares, symptoms and eventually antibodies.

chriskresser.com/the-gluten...

thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/about_...

What are your vitD, B12 and folate results and ranges?

Ferritin is optimal halfway through range. You can raise ferritin by supplementing iron which should be taken with 1,000mg vitamin C to aid absorption and minimise constipation. Iron should be taken 4 hours away from Levothyroxine.

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Do you know your vitamin D result?

Important to test first before supplementing

Ferritin, you can eat liver once a week to increase levels.

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Think it's also a sign of pernicious anaemia.

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Hi to you both,

Thanks for replying. In July Ferritin level as in post above but have mainly stopped taking it. Vitamin D was good as was supplementing

Vitamin D 121 nmol/L 50.0 - 200.0.

I think I need to start taking this again now as had stopped.

Vitamin b12 in July 371 nmol/l 140.0 - 724.0.

Folate in July 6.38 ug/l 2.91 - 50.0

I had severe iron deficiency anaemia in March this year and Vitamin D was very low too. I'm still feeling really ill. I am also getting help from the PAS forum with potential problems with B12 but sadly am finding the GP's really hard to deal with. I'm just worried as physically I'm not really able to walk far these days. I'm 45 so would expect to be able to do more really.

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So with Hashimoto's, most of us have leaky gut which means you probably need to be strictly gluten free.

Other things to help heal gut are

Bone broth

thyroidpharmacist.com/artic...

Probiotics

carolinasthyroidinstitute.c...

Great film definitely shows why just testing TSH is inadequate

drbradshook.com/understandi...

When increasing dose and getting metabolism to increase and rebalance , we have to be patient, waiting at least 6-8 between dose increase and testing

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Hi SlowDragon

Thanks so ,much for that useful information. I had definitely cut down on gluten but not cut it out completely which I will try to do now. I will watch the film great to have lots of knowledge. Unfortunately this GP will be just looking at the TSH level I just hope she agrees to an increase. Besides the article and my symptoms I wonder could I say anything else to convince her to increase the dose.

Patience is definitely not my strongest virtue. I probably even did this blood test about a week too soon. Is there a usual dose that most people are on. Thank you so much for your help and support.

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