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Thyroid UK
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New here and confused about anemia and connection to hypothyroidism

I have had low thyroid for around 20 years I was told it is autoimmune but my dose has only increased once and still only 75 ... I thought if it was auto immune like hashimoto it would continue to get worse does this mean it isn’t autoimmune? Also I have just been told I am anemic with large or small red blood cells I can’t remember I have to go back doctors Monday to over results as I have never felt really well I thought my anemia symptoms were just me getting older I have had them for about 6 months,to a year ...confused tired dizzy clumbsey all other test were good... any thoughts would be welcome x

8 Replies


If you were told your hypothyroidism was autoimmune then it was either diagnosed by abnormal thyroid antibodies or via an ultrasound scan. It may be that the 75mcg Levothyroxine you take damped down Hashimoto's and you've retained a lot of thyroid function. If you post your recent thyroid results and ranges I'll tell you whether you are optimally dosed.

Hypothyroid doesn't cause iron deficiency anaemia but quite a few hypothyroid patients, usually menstruating women, do have iron deficiency anaemia.


Hello clutter,

Thank you for taking the time to respond .. I never asked for the exact results but the doctor said thyroid was very good this time.. i am always too embarrassed to ask for exact numbers plus I would never remember them. I was diagnosed less than a year after giving birth and the doctor hoped it would be temporary but they tested for antibodies which confirmed it was going to last the rest of my life she but they never mention a name like hashimotos just said it is autoimmune so I never really knew exactly what I have. I have read about hashimotos leading to dementia and all sorts of other scary things I hoped it was something else.

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Get into the habit of asking for a printout of your blood test results and ranges. "Good", "fine", "okay" etc. are just opinions.

UK doctors don't seem to like the term Hashimoto's and prefer "autoimmune thyroiditis", "thyroiditis" or "chronic autoimmune thyroiditis". They're all the same thing. The scariest thing Hashimoto's will do is to destroy your thyroid gland. It doesn't cause dementia.


larger red blood cells would be a classic symptom of B12 or folate deficiency - small red blood cells would be iron deficiency. a high RDW could indicate that both types of anaemia are actually present.

There is quite a relatively high chance (varies from 10-40% in studies) that someone with hashis will go on to develop autoimmune gastritis (PA) which will cause problems absorbing vitamins and minerals - which would include iron, folate and B12 - developing an absorption problem will also affect absorption of thyroid meds, which would mean the need to up the meds to compensate.

Pandapop21 , suggest you get hold of your test results as others, and also post them on the PASoc Forum



Thank you I will ask on Monday when I go back .


you can just ask the receptionist for a print out, there maybe a charge for the printing, ask if your surgery has an online service as your results should also be on there


That's a good idea I would feel better asking the receptionist thanks


First thing is do you have any actual blood test results? If not you need to get hold of them. You are entitled under data protection laws.

You may be able to view test results online - ring and ask about this. If you can then apply for online access to your account. You may need enhanced access to view blood test results. All GP practices are supposed to offer online access including test results, in reality very few yet have blood test results available online.

If not then ask for print out of recent tests. Pick up in a day or two. They may make a nominal charge for paper. (£10 maximum)

You need to know results for TSH, FT4 and FT3.

As you already know you have high antibodies this confirms that you have Hashimoto's

Essential to test vitamin D, folate, ferritin and B12.

Its extremely common for these to be too low, when hypothyroid, but especially with Hashimoto's

Always get actual results and ranges. Post results when you have them, members can advise

Low stomach acid is common result of being hypothyroid

Low stomach acid is closely linked to low iron, folate and B12


Low B12 symptoms


Hashimoto's, known by medics here in UK more commonly as autoimmune thyroid disease.

About 90% of all hypothyroidism in Uk is due to Hashimoto's


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