Log in
Thyroid UK
91,756 members106,050 posts

Help Interpreting Iron and Vit. D Results Please


I had my vitamin D and a full iron panel taken in November 2017. They were a private draw. The results were:

Vitamin D - 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Total = 113. Ref. range 100-200

Iron Panel

Iron - 13.6 umol/L (6.6 - 26.0)

TIBC - 67 umol/L (41 -77)

Transferrin Saturation Percentage - 20 (20-55)

Ferritin - 49 ug/L (13-150)

I decided I needed to supplement and try to get levels up a bit. I took Solgar Gentle Iron for about 3.5 months and then retested. This time the GP did it and of course the references are completely different and I'm not sure how to compare them. They don't look much different to me, but I hope someone with more experience can comment.

New results from April 2018

Vitamin D - 115 nmol/L (Just says; Greater than 50 = Vitamin D sufficiency)

Iron Panel

Serum Iron - 13.3 micromol/L (11 - 30)

Serum transferrin - 2.87 g/L (1.8-3.6)

Transferrin Saturation Index - 21 (16-50)

Serum Ferritin - 32.9 microg/L (10-200)

At the same time I've had my thyroid results back. I'm stuck on 50mcg Levo.

Even though I asked for them, they have not tested my antibodies!

TSH - 10.30 (0.27 - 4.2)

Free T4 - 16.9 (12.0 - 22.0)

Free T3 - 4.4 (3.1 - 6.8)

My TSH was around 4.5 last summer when I began Levo. Nice to see I'm steadily getting worse. That will be why my hair is nearly gone on top!

With these reference ranges, where should my Free T's sit to be approaching optimal? I know they should be in the upper end of the range, but I'm not sure where, in number terms, that should be.

Thanks for any help you can give. My vitamin B12 was tested privately last autumn with an active test and came back with good results.

8 Replies


Vit D is within the range recommended by the Vit D Council.

Optimal iron levels here rt3-adrenals.org/Iron_test_...

Ferritin needs to be at least 70 for thyroid hormone to work. It doesn't seem as though your Gentle Iron has helped as your level has gone down. Why not try eating liver once a week, maximum 200g, which helped raise my ferritin. Also include iron rich foods in your diet apjcn.nhri.org.tw/server/in...

Very strange that your TSH is so high considering where your free Ts lie. The aim of a treated hypo patient generally is for TSH to be 1 or below or wherever it needs to be for FT4 and FT3 to be in the upper part of their respective reference ranges when on Levo, if that is where you feel well. The upper part of the range generally would mean the top quarter.


Hi. So Vitamin D will be OK for the summer?

I will try eating more liver. But is there a good supplement you have used that might help too?

Where are my Free T's within the reference range though? About half-way? They could stand to be higher couldn't they?



If you go out in the sun (middle of the day is best), some bare skin, no sunscreen, depending on our skin colour, 15-20 minutes, should keep your Vit D level up during the summer months. Not everyone makes it naturally. I have to supplement all year, less in summer, but I don't tolerate the sun so can't sit out in it.

Supplementing iron is a difficult one, it's quite complicated, which is why you never see me suggesting iron supplements. Your April results show

Serum iron is 36% through range whereas 55-70% is recommended.

Transferrin is just slightly over half way, whereas the article says high in range shows need to supplement.

Transferrin saturation doesn't say whether it's percentage with your latest results but your previous one does and it's much lower than recommended.

Ferritin we know is too low.

I used liver to raise my ferritin. I didn't get on with iron tablets at all but occasionally I take 1 x MegaFoods Blood Builder which is a whole food iron supplement. I only take this when I don't feel like cooking liver.

So having said that, I don't feel as though I know enough to suggest that you take an iron supplement. Personally, I would go the liver route first and see what improvement you get with that.

Your FT4 is 49% through the range, FT3 is 35%. So yes, they could do with increasing so considering your very high TSH then an increase in Levo is indicated. But don't forget that optimal isn't down to numbers, it's to do with where you feel best.


Thank you. I love black pudding. I'm going to eat that regularly too. That might help.

I know optimal isn't down to numbers only. But I feel awful at the moment so something needs to change. I'm so weary. Heavy headed and unable to concentrate and focus. It's not good.


Think you should leave the black pudding alone, it's full of gluten, shame I used to love it with a bit of colemans mustard.


Not sure I'd assume it is "full of gluten" - several companies offer gluten-free versions:

Gluten Free Black Pudding

Finest quality Gluten Free Black Pudding

Delicious and simple to cook

Minimum of 3 week shelf life once delivered

Suitable for home freezing

No artificial ingredients

Great source of iron

Gluten Free

Less than 1% fat

Water, Rice, Modified Starch, Dried Potato, Dried Pork Blood, Potato Starch, Rice Flour, Onions, Salt, Mixed Herbs, Pepper, Yeast Extract.


gluten free black pudding

Gluten Free

We make the region's only gluten free, fresh blood* black pudding made with Gluten Free oats, fresh blood, buckwheat, onions, spices and pork fat.

* We believe at least 95% of the black pudding produced in the UK is made from inported dried blood powder.

Our gluten free black pudding is cooked fresh and has a 21-day best before date and freeze for up to 4 months.

Ingredients: fresh blood, certified gluten free oats, buckwheat, british outdoor reared pork fat, onions, spices...that is it! (No wheat, maize, dairy, chilli, nitrates, nitrites, sulphates, celery, eggs).


Gluten Free Black Pudding


Product Description

This black pudding is made with a Gluten Free Oatmeal. Suitable for coeliac sufferers.


Apparently even Asda offer a version.

No idea what any of it tastes like! :-)


What a star you are Helvela, I thought my black puddin' days were over.


I'm not gluten free. I'm annoyed that this last test didn't include an antibody check even though I asked the doctor for it, but so far, in years of testing and monitoring thyroid, I've not seen any antibody activity.


You may also like...