Classic NHS 😪: From the NHS pages on... - Thyroid UK

Thyroid UK
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Classic NHS 😪


From the NHS pages on hypothyroidism:

"Most cases of an underactive thyroid are caused by the immune system attacking the thyroid gland and damaging it, or by damage that occurs as a result of treatments for thyroid cancer or an overactive thyroid."

So far so good...most it.

"An underactive thyroid often occurs when the immune system, which usually fights infection, attacks the thyroid gland."

Yep...often then right?

" A condition called Hashimoto's disease is the most common type of autoimmune reaction that causes an underactive thyroid."

Got it. Autoimmune or treatment for cancer or hyperthyroid most common causes. Hashis is the most common ai cause. OK.

But wait...

"Less commonly, a thyroid antibody test may be recommended after a thyroid function test. A thyroid antibody test is only likely to be recommended if your GP suspects you have an autoimmune thyroid condition."

Wait...what? literally JUST said it was one of the most common causes. But the test for it is less common? Because my gp won't likely suspect the most common cause of an illness and test for it?

Seriously, how can the most common cause of an illness be the less commonly tested for??!

No real purpose to this post. Just feeling a bit incredulous. I thought the lack B12 deficiency knowledge was astounding. Now I discover I have this too and am likely gonna be faced with more blank expressions and general dismissiveness by the morons at my GP surgery 😩

Honestly WTFlip!

13 Replies

Seriously, how can the most common cause of an illness be the less commonly tested for??!

I suspect that if a patient has a clear cut case of overt hypothyroidism, with a high (over 10) TSH and a below reference range Free T4, then doctors just treat it. They don't think they need to know why it's happened.

That's the problem isn't it! It never fails to astound me the lack of interest in the "why". What the hell is wrong with these people???!

They've been taught that it doesn't matter why people are hypothyroid. And they also get told that hypothyroidism is a minor issue with an easy solution. So, from their point of view, why waste time on it?

Truth. Sadly.

I'm with you. Tens of years ago I had to twist my GP's arm to get that test done. And less money in the pot now! For everything ..... so I've about given up, looking for natural remedies rather than pharma. Best of luck.

in reply to EffieGee

GPs seem to have become gatekeepers of the NHS purse instead of advocates for the patients they are meant to represent. I'm with you too EffieGee. Suspicious of any pharma now. It's only just starting to dawn on me that much of what I'm experiencing now at 43, could be down to the drugs I was put on at 13 for my epilepsy.

GPs seem to have become gatekeepers of the NHS purse instead of advocates for the patients they are meant to represent.

That was by design. It happened as a result of the Health & Social Care Act 2012.

The UK government is no longer responsible for the health of its citizens.

I think fear of the unknown comes into it as well. Often they haven't got a clue!


Thanks for posting and considering hashi's is the commonest cause of hypo, what we've read is a lot of nonsense, just as the insistence that TSH and T4 are revealing tests which we know also is nonsense. Are they completely unaware that it is T3 that runs our whole metabolism? I assume so as they only do TSH and T4, never or rarely FT4 and FT3 and antibodies.

Spot on. Makes no sense does it 😖

I have Hashimoto’s. My daughter (27) is seriously tired all the time. I tell her about my issues (well actually she sees a lot) and it’s in our family. She decided to see the GP and I gave her a list of blood tests to ask for (recommended by the amazing people on here). The GP said, don’t know why you want all those done, but daughter insisted. So she’s having all the vits and irons done along with TSH. The GP said she’s “not allowed to request a TPO antibodies test”.

So I agree with you that the guidelines are stupid.

Hoping my daughter won’t have Hashimoto’s, but Big chance it could happen so keeping an eye on things.

If her TSH is at all near 4 I’ll get her to do a private test for antibodies etc so we have the full info to start with.

I agree that the doctors seem to cover the bases of all illnesses but very little else. I like you was an epileptic from age 13 till 37. ( I’m now 49 ) I stopped having fits when I was about 37 despite taking pills only sporadically, eventually 4 years ago doctor took me off pills altogether and I have been fit free .i wonder though what long term problems I have been left with ..? However I feel that we are very lucky to have the NHS and would hate the American healthcare system. xx


That's so interesting! The cause and effect of epilepsy drugs seems nonsensical. Fatigue has always been a massive trigger for me. And yet the drugs used to treat cause fatigue initially....and over time due to their effect on vit D and folate metabolism they can trigger a cascade of illnesses that cause fatigue and metabolic imbalance and neurological symptoms and thyroid dysfunction and so on and so on.....essentially lowering our seizure threshold OR actually triggering seizures. I know I've been fine off meds in the past for years. It's only when a succession of infections sent my systems into free fall that I had another seizure after 10 years fit free. (5 of those off meds). Subsequently back on the meds = downward spiral for the past 10 years. Go figure!

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