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Thyroid UK
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GP won’t treat me, please have a look at my results

I’ve basically been to see my GP today and he’s told me I don’t need treatment, I dug my heels in and still no. I had TSH of 5.3 4 years ago also but 5 years and 6 years ago it was low 3’s.

I’ve come out crying. I feel so disheartened. I’m bloated, very heavy periods, eyebrows are thinning, low sex drive, acne but dry skin, completely exhausted which I know could be down to ferritin. I’ve asked to see endo as he just basically gave me contraceptive pill to stop bleeding.

TSH 5.3 (0.27-4.20)

Free t4 14.2 (11.0-25.00)

Ferritin 12 (15-300)

Hb 138 (115-165)

My potassium was raised also at 5.6 (3.5-5.3)

Help plz xx

4 Replies

williamsad19 Unfortunately, you're stuck in this ridiculous place where you have loads of symptoms of hypo, over range TSH, but the NHS generally says you can't get a diagnosis of primary hypothyroidism until TSH reaches 10. You'd have got your diagnosis when you hit 3 in another country!

I think the best you can hope for is a diagnosis of subclinical hypothyroidism which is where TSH is raised, FT4/FT3 is normal but you have symptoms - see bestpractice.bmj.com/best-p... then click on High TSH - associated with a normal FT4 and/or FT3 and it says

High TSH - associated with a normal FT4 and/or FT3

•Subclinical (or mild) hypothyroidism occurs when TSH is above reference range with a normal FT4 and FT3. The risk of progression to overt hypothyroidism is 2% to 5% per year. [42] The risk is higher in patients with positive TPOAb. [43] The decision to treat these patients is controversial. Generally, thyroxine replacement is not recommended when TSH is below 10 mIU/L. [44] TSH and FT4 should be repeated at 6- to 12-month intervals to monitor for improvement or worsening in thyroid status in untreated patients. [42]

So maybe see a different doctor, print off and tick hypo symptoms on this list thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/about_... let the GP know how much your illness is affecting your life in every way - work, social, relationship, etc. Ask for thyroid antibodies to be tested and subclinical hypothyroidism to be considered. If you have a supportive partner then ask him to accompany you and speak on your behalf if necessary (that's how I got tested originally after 2 years of visiting the GP and being fobbed off, but I had almost killed him by throwing a very heavy wooden coat hanger at his head during another fatigue fuelled argument, missing him by a whisker!).


Ferritin 12 (15-300)

This is dire and isn't helping, causing many symptoms due to it's level.

For thyroid hormone to work (that's our own as well as replacement hormone) ferritin needs to be at least 70, preferably half way through range. You desperately need an iron supplement and as your level is so low you should ask for an iron infusion which will raise your level within 24-48 hours, tablets will take many months.

You can help raise your level by eating liver regularly, maximum 200g per week due to it's high Vit A content, and including lots of iron rich foods in your diet apjcn.nhri.org.tw/server/in... (Don't go yuk! Needs must here!)

Also, you need an iron panel and full blood count to see if you have iron deficiency anaemia, which you very well might have with a ferritin level this low. Ask your GP to carry these tests out. If you are diagnosed with iron deficiency anaemia then the treatment is 2 or 3 x ferrous fumarate tablets daily and you should take each one with 1000mg Vitamin C to aid absorption and help prevent constipaton. Always take iron 4 hours away from thyroid meds (when you get them) and two hours away from other medication and supplements as it will affect absorption.


Because your ferritin is so low, chances are that other nutrients are low or deficient as well. Ask for B12, Folate and Vit D to be tested. Low levels of these all bring their own symptoms and problems.


As for the raised potassium, this can be due to tightening/clenching the fist during the blood draw and can happen if the tourniquet is tightened on the arm for longer than 60 seconds during the blood draw. Of course, there are other reasons for high potassium.


you cannot be half pregnant - you cannot be half hypothyroid! When my results were similar to yours I couldn't get out of bed. I am one of the lucky ones as my TSH eventually rose to 10.1 and then bingo the endo said that I was hypothyroid derr

You need to take good quality vitamin c up to bowel tolerance, this will increase your ferritin. It's rock bottom so you may want to consider some iron but not all types of iron is good, would you be able to see a Nutritionist??

1 like

Thankyou ladies, your replies have made me feel slightly better this evening, I’ve been a mess today starting to think maybe he’s right and am i maybe over thinking things? But I know I’m not! I’m a nurse myself, I’ve done nights, 60 hour weeks, had children, and now I work a nice 9-5, I know what tired is but this is ridiculous! I’m a gym bunny normally and can’t even be bothered to walk my dogs now.

And to just give me the pill to slow my bleeding down, instead of looking at why it’s happening when I’ve never had this problem before.

I’ve got ferrous fumerate 3 times a day from GP. And have vit c anyway as I’ve just had constant colds for the last 3 months.

I was very insistent but he wouldn’t listen to me at all 😭

Thankyou ladies xx


I’ve got ferrous fumerate 3 times a day from GP.

Just for future reference you can buy Ferrous fumarate 210mg (FF210) in boxes of 84 from pharmacists without prescription, although it is up to the pharmacist's discretion. If one pharmacist refuses try a different one. I've bought FF210 from Tesco and Lloyds Pharmacies.

To do an iron panel privately without a doctor - post the results in a post on the forum and ask for feedback :


Optimum levels are described here :


If you do decide to treat yourself with iron supplements it is essential to do regular testing to be sure that you don't overdose yourself, because iron is poisonous in overdose.


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