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Thyroid UK
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Hypothyroidism ??

Hello! Can someone tell me what these result mean?

TSH: 19.97 (2 weeks later: 14.00)

Free T4: 11.8

Free T3: 4.8

Thyrog. Antibodies: 1828.0

Thyroglobulin: <0.1

TPO Antibody: 363.0

My GP said I have subclinical hypothyroidism and started me on 25 mcg Synthroid because my symptoms were really bad. I felt so terrible. Its been 2 weeks now, and my energy level is improved. I'm also less irritable, but I still have really hard stools and I'm bloated and my throat hurts most of the time. Also, food doesn't seem to satisfy me. I'm always hungry and have a lot of craving. Doctor didn't say anything about the antibodies. Am I fighting off something? Is that why my throat is so sore? Also, I had mono last year. I'm 25.

Will be going back for another blood test in 4 weeks.

Thank you for any insight you might be able to give me :)

16 Replies

Hi, you need to put the ranges in too (the numbers in brackets) . Tsh is very high though.


Oops. Here they are. My results are in brackets after the range:

TSH 0.40-4.50 (19.97 & then 14)

Free T4 9.0-26.0 (11.8)

Free T3 2.8-7.1 (4.8)

Thyrog Antibodies: 0.0-115.0 (1828.0)

Thyroglobulin: 3.5-77.0 (<0.1)

TPO antibody: 0.0-35.0 (363.0)


Ok I don't know much about antibodies but T4 needs to be higher in range as does T3... both arehalfway which suggests (to me) that you are converting so you may be fine carrying on with levothyroxine (which is good news). Hypothyroid sufferers tend to feel better with T4 and T3 at the top of range so I think your dose need to be increased (tsh is very high anyway... above 3 can cause problems)... also, check vitamins B12 and D because if these are low you will feel ill anyway. (Edited, sorry got u mixed up with another response I was making)


No you have hypothyroidism as your TSH is over 10. Tell your doctor to check their guidelines.

Due to the antibody level you also have auto-immune thyroid disease. The treatment for that is what you are on however a few other things will help you.

How and when are you taking your medication? Are you taking it on an empty stomach one hour before eating or drinking anything in the morning?



I am waking up at 5:00 am every morning, taking the pill, and then going back to sleep. I'm so hungry when I get up I find it impossible to wait an 1hr before breakfast.

I tried taking it at night for two days because I read online that it would work well but I felt terrible. Switched back to my 5:00 am routine after 2 days.


As long as you eat and drink after 6am you will be fine. Obviously you can take your medication with water.

Only reason I'm checking is lots of doctors don't tell people what medication/supplements you can or can't take on an empty stomach.


She didn't tell me anything. I read online that coffee & calcium & iron interact with absorption. Also read something about estrogen.. I take BC. So I'm taking it a 10 PM to allow some time between the two.


Welcome to the forum. Well the good news is that your doctor has started you on thyroid medication and wants you back for another blood test in 6 weeks do good! We are started on a low dose to get our bodies used to it and so after only two weeks you may start to feel some difference but it takes 6 weeks for e h new dose to get fully into the system as it builds up slowly over that time. So you will. E retested then and most likely given a 25 mcg increase and then repeat with another test in 6 weeks until you are taking the right amount for you. So get into the habit of getting a copy of your results and the ranges for your own records bit until you learn how to read them it's helpful to post them so we. An help you understand them. The ranges are very important as they differ from lab to lab. Otherwise we would just be guessing. It's easier to see now that you are undermedicated and that it expected as we k ow you are just starting but impossible to guess as you get nearer to where you need to be and going over is not a nice place to be so that is another reason why we take things slowly.

This forum is run by Thyroid Uk so you may like to read their site S lots of info on there but there is a lot to learn as well to make sure you reach your goal. Sometimes we get problems when we start the medication and get more symptoms. This. Oils be down to the fillers. Tablets have bunking agents and fillers added to keep them stable so if that isa problem then you will have to change to another brand. So when you get a brand your body is happy with then ask your pharmacy to always supply that one. Different. Rands can also be slightly different potency as well so another good reason to keep things the same.

So look at the Thyroid Uk site and shout out if anything you don't understand and we shall help.


Thank you :) I will check out their website


When you go for your thyroid blood tests get them done first thing in the morning and don't take your thyroxine for 24 hours before the test. This is because your TSH (which is what your doctor will adjust your dose by) varies throughout the day and is highest in the morning. If you have your blood test when TSH is high you are more likely to end up on a higher dose that makes you feel well. Your doctor should be aiming to get your TSH down to 1, not just somewhere within the 'normal range'. This is because a scientific study showed that 95% of people without thyroid problems have a TSH between 0.5 and 1.5. The 'normal range' (something like 0.2-5.0) is there for diagnosing problems, not for treating someone like you who has already been diagnosed with a problem.

You have high levels of antibodies. Currently your thyroid is producing some hormone, but not enough. As time goes by your thyroid will produce less and less hormone as the antibodies destroy your thyroid, so you will need an increasing dose over the years. 90% of people with hypothyroidism are in the same situation. You will eventually find yourself on a 'full replacement dose' and then you won't need to increase the dose any more. Some people find that going gluten free decreases their antibody count, which slows the progress of the disease.

Most people with thyroid issues find they have low levels of Ferritin, Vitamin B12, Folate and Vitamin D. Get your doctor to test you levels and post the results here. Someone will advise. If our levels of these nutrients are too low the thyroid medication we take doesn't work as well as it should. Maybe this is one reason why your food doesn't satisfy you, although I think a lot of us can relate to your appetite problem - I think I experienced this for a few years before I was diagnosed hypothyroid.


My doctor said my ferritin is also low. I don't have that exact result unfortunately. She said she didn't want to start me on iron at the same time as synthroid because if I felt better when I see her next, she wouldn't be able to tell which solution was helping me.. I was so happy to be getting some form of treatment I did not argue.

I'm worried about delaying the taking of my synthroid on the day of the blood test. I experimented with taking it at night for 2 days and felt so terrible for 4 days. Since then I'm very careful to take it at exactly 5 am evey morning. I will of course take your advice but I worry, because those bad days really interfere with my success at school.


You can take your synthroid immediately after the blood has been taken, so only a few hours after you usually take it. It is better than being under-medicated and feeling bad all the time.


I'll do that!


Sorry to bother you again. You just seem incredibly knowledgeable and I feel so lost in all this. I'm filled with self doubt. When you look at my results, its clear to you that I have hypothyroidism? There's this nasty nancy up in my head telling me that I'm just lazy and that nothing is really wrong with my thyroid.

Besides my doctor seemed real unsure. "It's quite the mystery" "I'm not sure subclinical results could be causing all these symptoms" etc.

I was just looking at my next blood test and she's having them check for VIH.. Which is terrifying, but also doesn't worry me much because I've been in a commited monogamous relationship for a long time.. Yet, her doubt just adds to mine.


Yes I think there's not much doubt that you have hypothyroidism. Your high TSH (95% or so of healthy people have a TSH between 0.5 and 1.5 wheras yours is 14-19), your low but in range FT4 result, and your very high levels of both types of thyroid antibodies show that you have autoimmune thyroid disease. 90% of people with hypothyroidism have the autoimmune version like you. What happens when the antibodies attack your thyroid is that as the thyroid cells are destroyed they release thyroid hormone into your bloodstream. I guess this is the only reason why your FT4 and FT3 results are as high as they are. The level of antibody attack usually varies over time, so sometimes our thyroid hormone levels (FT4 and FT3) are below range, and sometimes within range.

As for symptoms, there are hundreds of symptoms that can be caused by hypothyroidism - you are not being lazy. Once you are adequately treated and your nutrients reach healthy levels you should start to realise just how many little niggly symptoms (and a few bigger ones) have been dragging you down. My 'favourite' is a little bit of backache that stops me being able to have a lie-in at weekends. It always reappears when I am undermedicated. Not to mention the tinnitus, slow heartrate and hair loss.


Your dose of 25mcg synthroid is very low unless you are very frail with a heart disease. Usually it should be 50mcg with 25mcg incremental doses every six weeks

Blood tests should be at the very earliest, fasting (you can drink water) and allow a gap of 24 hours between last dose and test and take afterwards. This helps keep TSH at its highest as that's all doctors look at and prevents them reducing dose unnecessarily


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