Menopause or hypothyroid?: Hi everyone, I’m new... - Thyroid UK

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Menopause or hypothyroid?

MelonJ profile image

Hi everyone, I’m new to this site and after reading lots of posts feel I have some learning ahead of me.

I visited my GP 2 years ago because I was constantly tired and had suddenly developed a loud tinnitus in my left ear. It was a while since I’d been checked for my high blood pressure which I’ve had for 10+ years and taking meds for. I had a fasting blood test and was referred to ent at my local hospital.

I was told by Drs receptionist that blood results were normal but was never told what I was tested for, stupidly I didn’t ask,

ENT found I had lost partial hearing in my left ear and sent me for an mri because apparently it’s unusual for that to happen in just 1 ear. After a lot of worry I was told they didn’t find any cause.

Since that time my tiredness has worsened, I have developed irregular but very heavy periods, much worse pmt, disturbed sleep, very dry skin, hair falling out plus a range of other symptoms which I thought were probably the onset of menopause so went back to Dr to discuss hrt.

The young lady Dr told me my last blood test showed raised cholesterol but not high enough to need treatment and did more bloods including THT? (I think that’s what it was on the form).

I had a call from her a few days later to say my TSH was 5.03. She explained it could be hypothyroidism and should retest in 3 months.

Having read a lot now about something I previously knew nothing about and discovering that my sister is going through exactly the same as me with TSH 5.85 I am wondering if I should push for tests now. I’d like advice on what I should do now to make sure I get the right tests etc.

Sorry for the long post but would like to know what I’m facing .Thanks 🙂

14 Replies
SlowDragon profile image

First thing is do you have to do is to get hold of copies of actual results

UK GP practices are supposed to offer online access for blood test results. Ring and ask if this is available and apply to do so if possible. To see actual blood test results you may need to apply for "enhanced access ". In reality many GP surgeries do not have blood test results online yet

Alternatively ring receptionist and request printed copies of results. Allow couple of days and then go and pick up. They can make nominal charge for printing but many will do so for free (£10 max)

It's normal for GP's to wait and retest in 2-3 months, in case high test results are temporary

You could ask GP to test thyroid antibodies and vitamins now

If antibodies are high this is Hashimoto's, (also known by medics here in UK more commonly as autoimmune thyroid disease).

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

Essential to test vitamin D, folate, ferritin and B12. Always get actual results and ranges. Post results when you have them, members can advise

For full Thyroid evaluation TSH, FT4, TT4, FT3 plus TPO and TG thyroid antibodies. Plus vitamin D, folate, ferritin and B12.

Private tests are available

Medichecks Thyroid plus ultra vitamin or Blue Horizon Thyroid plus eleven are the most popular choice. DIY finger prick test or option to pay extra for private blood draw. Both companies often have money off offers.

All thyroid tests should be done as early in morning and fasting. This gives highest TSH and most consistent results. (Patient to patient tip, GP will be unaware)

MelonJ profile image
MelonJ in reply to SlowDragon

Wow that was a quick reply, thanks 🙂 I will see if I can get copies of both blood tests I had.

Hi reallyfedup123,

I have 3 sisters, we’re all between 48-53.

3 of us have high blood pressure.

1 of these has had stroke.

1 has just had same blood results as me.

Mother has overactive thyroid + on blood thinning meds.

Might be coincidence but my daughter was pregnant until recently giving birth, when testing iron etc the lab discovered she had a b12 deficiency (they said enlarged cells, sticky?) and she had a course of injections and told to get retested after the birth. She was asked if anyone in the family had the same thing. Could this be related?

Also didn’t mention my complete brain fuzz and memory loss earlier, I put it down to age and stress but see lots of people talking about it on her.

bluebug profile image
bluebug in reply to MelonJ

Your daughter shouldn't have her serum B12 tested after having B12 injections or supplementation. NICE guidelines actually state clearly this is of no value once treatment has begun.

I would suggest you join the pernicious anaemia society on healthunlocked or tell your daughter to join it for more info.

MelonJ profile image
MelonJ in reply to bluebug

Thanks bluebug

You all need the FULL testing suggested above through Medichecks ir Blue Horizon. It will be money well invested.

Raised blood pressure is usually a symptom of something else going on and not an illness in itself. Thyroid so often involved which in turn trashes the absorption of vitamins and minerals causing low B12 - Folate - Ferritin - VitD. They are all involved in heart health too.

Your sister with the stroke - can be caused by HIGH levels of Homocysteine in the blood when B12 is low in the cells. Rarely checked. Also thyroid.

Regarding your daughter - when they re-test the results will be skewed and they will stop injections. Do NOT let this happen. She will also need Folate as it works with B 12 in the body. Check VitD. See link below ...

MelonJ profile image
MelonJ in reply to Marz

Thanks Marz. I’ll pass on this info to my sisters. I’m guessing thyroid problems can be genetic from what is being said.

Hello there, I'm not an expert but your story very nearly mirrored my own story. I started sweating and shaking, periods went awry, my left ear went wrong, couldn't hear a thing, and strangely my feet just started hurting all the time, really painful to stand on. Also couldn't sleep, then could at random times etc...I thought I was going through menopause as I'm at that age....dammit! Haha.....

I went to the docs to confirm I was fully fledged menopausal and bingo! 2 blood tests later I was called back in to say I was hypo, was given a prescription and off you go.....Few months later ear cleared, sweating and shaking reduced etc.

I'm not saying I'm pain free, or that my symptoms have gone altogether, as they do pop up randomly even now, but.......I'm better than I was and am actively always trying to look out for my own body a bit more.

The only thing I do like about this is my periods stopped altogether and that, for me is a massive plus as I was plagued with heavy periods all my, ya know, trying focus on the positive. :)

Wishing you well.

MelonJ profile image
MelonJ in reply to Northie

Thanks Northie, it’s good to hear I’m not alone 🙂

This website is very good! But I keep finding more links to hypothyroidism and my symptoms that I didn’t think were related. I’m regularly tested for glaucoma as I have ocular hypertension (raised pressure) which has steadily gone up over the years. I have a checkup next week so I’ll mention thyroid to the ophthalmologist too. To think that all of my symptoms could have 1 cause is quite a revelation.

Marz profile image
Marz in reply to MelonJ

Everything you need to know about the thyroid - the main website of this Forum. Also a list of signs and symptoms are there for you to check yours off .......

Yes look at the list, tick them off and take it to you doctor. They might learn something about the vast number of symptoms there are!

Today I registered with my go for access to my records online and requested copies of my last blood test as it could take up to 28 days to see notes online. Positive steps and it was so easy! 😊

MelonJ profile image
MelonJ in reply to MelonJ

Well I got a copy of my latest blood results printout same day as well as access to limited records. Even more surprising I got access to the rest of my notes (not everything included) within 2 days so that was good.

No surprises as such. But noticed that I’ve had 2 high LDL cholesterol readings in a row and it’s risen. Nothing was said except it’s a little bit raised. With my additional raised blood pressure I thought it would at least be brought up as an issue.

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