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Thyroid UK
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Newbie - TSH 5.7 Hypothyroid??

Hi New to the forum but looking for a bit of advise please.

I have been feeling really rubbish now for ages and have been tested in the past for thyroid problems - they have always come back as Borderline. When I look at the list of symptoms for Hypothyroid I seem to have most of them. Weight gain, Very dry skin, fatigue, Anxiety, loss of libido, joint pain, heavy painful periods, etc

Back in Feb, my doctor sent me for blood tests including TSH.

When I went back for the results he commented that my TSH was 5.9, everything else was fine although he did mention that my cholesterol was high but not dangerously so.

He asked me to wait 3 months and go for another TSH test.

I called yesterday and got the results which were 5.7 but the receptionist could not give me any other details other than "make an appointment with the doctor"

The problem is the Doctor that I see is really difficult to get an appointment with - The earliest book in advance appointment I could get was 4th June! Other than that the only option is to call every day to see if they have any cancellations.

I guess what I am asking is - what do I need to ask the Doctor when I do get an appointment?

Is the TSH 5.7 considered Hypothyroid or will I be Borderline again?

Should I be asking for T3 and T4 testing?

Really don't know what I am going to do if he says its borderline - I feel like I am coming apart at the seams - quite literally with the weight gain :) - 14st at 4' 11" is not a good look.

Any suggestions .....?

Thanks in advance

11 Replies

Hi nickyjj272. Yes, you are hypothyroid with a high TSH of that level. NO, you are NOT borderline. Your TSH is too high, meaning your are hypo. A normal and good TSH level when not on thyroid medication is under 2.0. Once it climbs over 2.0, this means your thyroid is slowing down.

This doctor does not know how to diagnose thyroid disease. TSH is not a thyroid hormone, but instead comes from your pituitary gland and communicates with your thyroid. Your thyroid hormones are called T3 and T4. The tests that are used to measure your available levels of T3 and T4 are called FT3 and FT4. The Total tests are the wrong ones. So yes, you need to test FT3 and FT4, along side TSH. Your thyroid antibodies also need to be tested to determine if your hypothyroidism originates due to autoimmune disease, Hashimoto's. There are two thyroid antibodies that are tested together: TPOab and TGab.

Honestly, why wait for a doctor like that, and certainly, why would you want to wait 3 more months? What for what? He has only steered you wrong so far. I see many people in the UK opt to get private tests done so that they can get the correct tests. Then they come on this site and ask for interpretation of their bloods. Some also purchase their own medication. Hopefully these are options for you?



Thanks for your reply. Good to hear that 5.7 is not considered to be borderline.

I am hoping I can get a cancellation with this doctor as he has requested to see me based on my test results. However if I don't get a satisfactory answer I am going to look at going privately for the blood tests etc.

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If you are in the UK doctors have been told not to diagnose until the TSH is 10! In other countries it would be if it was above 3+. So it depends upon your doctor. However, tick off the following symptoms and you need thyroid antibodies tested. Having thyroid antibodies means you have an Autoimmune Thyroid Disease called Hashimoto's which is the commonest form of hypothyroidism.

If you have antibodies - these attack the thyroid gland and wax and wane until hypothyroid he should prescribe.

The following are from TUK:-






Thank you. I think it's going to be easier to cross through the symptoms I don't have as there are less of them. 😕


For full Thyroid evaluation you need TSH, FT4, TT4, FT3 plus TPO and TG thyroid antibodies.

Plus important to test vitamin D, folate, ferritin and B12.

Essential to test thyroid antibodies, FT3 and FT4, plus vitamins

Private tests are available. Thousands on here forced to do this as NHS often refuses to test FT3 or antibodies


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

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. Low vitamins are especially common with Hashimoto's. Food intolerances are common too, especially gluten. So it's important to get antibodies tested.


Thanks. I have managed to get an appointment this afternoon. So will see how that goes.

Thanks for your advice it will give me lots of questions to ask him.

Will update once I have seen the doctor.


Good luck. State your symptoms and tell him he has to have a solution and surely that’s a trial starting at 50 of levo with tests in 6 weeks to see how your levels are doing.

I wrote a speech for my gp and wrote crib notes on my hand. 😂 was worse than an exam

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I know what you mean. I feel like my only topic of conversation right now is my Thyroid or my aches and pains.

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*** update***

Had my appointment today and he confirmed my results were 5.7 compared to 5.66 in February.

We discussed how I am feeling and I told him my list of symptoms.

He said there is a grey area whereby bloods can show as ok but symptoms are present. At this point I was thinking here we go again....... BUT.......

He said as I have so many symptoms he will try me on 50 levothyroxine for a month to see if there is any improvement.

To say I am shocked is an understatement. I went in expectingto be fobbed off but I actually came out with medication!

I know it's still early days and no guarantee that in 1 months time I will given a repeat but at least it's a step in the right direction for now.

Big thanks to everyone who commented. It means a lot to know there are others who understand.

I will keep you posted on how it goes. X

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Sounds exactly like me! I had private blood tests (antibodies tested etc) and it came back that my antibodies were extremely high with a TSH of 5.7 - have now just started 50 levothyroxine and hoping that I start to feel better. I know the NHS do a wonderful job but in my case it's been two years of being told "everything's normal". Hope you start feeling better. dx


Hi. How are you getting on with the Levothyroxine?

I am quite surprised that I am feeling a bit better already, and it's been less than a month. Just got to hope I get a repeat prescription when I go back to doctors. If i dont then i think i will be going fown the private test route.


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