Private blood tests discussed on BBC4 thought ... - Thyroid UK

Thyroid UK

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Private blood tests discussed on BBC4 thought by the medics to be unsafe and causing more worry 😂


Did you hear? Thyroid testing was the main test mentioned. The Professor ( very knowledgable stated they are unnecessary ) and just go to your doctor . 🤣 as they will sort everything out 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣. It creates worried well apparently 😭 give me strength .

Lets hope ‘they’ don’t start closing down private blood labs , no, surely that won’t happen . 😬

31 Replies

Can you tell us the name of the programme, and what day and time it was on, please. I'd like to listen to it (or watch it) on iPlayer.

diogenes in reply to humanbean

It was You and Yours at 12.15pm today on Radio 4. A nice example of the professionals cosy saying "Leave it to us, we know best" when clearly they don't.

humanbean in reply to diogenes

Thanks, diogenes.

Found it :

I'm not sure how long it will be available for.

Edit: SmallBlueThing beat me to it and provided the time to start listening as well. :)

BBC Radio 4 "You and Yours", 14-Nov-2018, starting at 32:30

I can honestly say that I believe I would either be bed bound by now or have ended my life if I hadn't got private testing and gone to see a private endocrinologist.

Gcart in reply to Kes8

This is so for many here who have improved with the help of this wonderful forum. Maybe they will be after us next 👿😈What is driving their attitude about it. I can understand certain problems it may throw up for some people, but surely sense has to prevail when we are diagnosed and we are helping ourselves. How can anyone let alone a doctor be so cruel.

EllaRuby in reply to Kes8

Me too!

What a deluded maternalistic and superior attitude in evidence from that female Dr.

Hidden in reply to MaisieGray

Can't disagree with you, had to stop reading the barrage of tweets - I truly pity anyone that has the misfortune to be in receipt of her medical expertise.

MaisieGray in reply to Hidden

Hidden Shocking that she is disseminating her wisdom via her involvement in Drs' training. I see the Royal College of General Practitioners were tweeting a little ....

Well if my GP learns more about thyroid disease, and the labs stop refusing to test certain things, I'll go to the GP instead.

A nutritionist suspected thyroid issues for me, wrote a letter to my GP asking for a full thyroid function test, but GP only tested TSH and FT4 (which were fine). I paid for a private thyroid test, which showed high antibodies though. That test has allowed me to intervene now, hopefully preventing my thyroid from packing in for a far longer time.

I'm at an age to still be thinking about kids, so I'll know the importance of getting my thyroid tested before it affects any babies/causes miscarriage. Based on the doctors test alone, I'd have been more dismissive ("I've had my thyroid tested 3 years ago, and it was fine" sort of response).

The doctor talking on the programme was Dr Margaret McCartney. Her Twitter account is here :

The first reference to private blood testing on her Twitter was in an entry dated 26th October, and it crops up over and over again as you get closer to today.

You don't need a Twitter account to read a public Twitter account. I don't have one, but could still read it.

Lesson in how to read twitter, for those with no account and who don't know how to use it - it took me ages to work it out :

Once you've found an entry that interests you, click on the text after the name of the person tweeting, not on the name itself. Doing this makes the entire thread pop up. You close the pop-up thread with the X at the top right of the screen, then you are back to the original Twitter account you were reading.

Edit : I misinterpreted what was said on the program. Margaret McCartney is mentioned right after the mention of Medlab and I assumed the next person talking was her. I was wrong. See Maisie Gray's reply below.

Cooper27 in reply to humanbean

Oh wow - I just looked at Medlabs twitter feed though - they're not doing themselves any favours there either!

MaisieGray in reply to humanbean

I believe the Dr was introduced as Dr Kamila Hawthorn, and the RCGP also refer to her as such, in its tweets.

"It isn't a case of 'doctor knows best' - it's about having a conversation with a patient about risks and benefits of a test, this gives the GP opportunity to outline why a test might not be appropriate, and the patient to make an informed decision: @KamilaHawthorne #YouandYours"

humanbean in reply to MaisieGray

Margaret McCartney is definitely mentioned in that segment, immediately after Medlab is mentioned. I misunderstood and assumed the next person to talk was her, but clearly I misinterpreted what was being said. I'll edit my post where I first mentioned her.

Thanks for posting - I listened to that part of the program and that woman is so full of herself! Unbelievable!!

She is apparently an academic at Surrey University - more letters after her name than you can shake a stick at but clearly no idea that the thyroid tests the NHS offers (or not!) are insufficient to get the full picture. If that was the case we would not need private testing! 😡

I would never have been diagnosed with hypothyroidism or identified my Grave's disease without private testing! It makes me so angry when doctors say this. It's so infantalising. They don't want patients involved in their own care and they don't want to ever be questionned! I think Thyroid UK should issue a formal response to this BBC regarding this programme and send in some case studies from their members.

How patronising that doctor was. I'd like to tell her about my horrendous story concerning thyroid illness and GPs plus endocrinologists, as I'm sure everyone else on here would.

Of course, their intention is to stop us testing on the NHS, to close down our direct access to private labs, to refuse to refer us to private labs, and to refuse to accept tests any private lab tests we managed to somehow wangle.

They are trying to protect themselves from the I ncreased scrutiny and realisation that these people are so badly educated and so astonishingly incompetent.

Let’s hope they never end up hypo or hyper and treated on the NHS. But then again... wonder how soon they’d be breaking their own protocols. Arrogance - I’m doctor, I’m a god - sorry doesn’t work nowadays. You can be questioned and be wrong like everyone else. And the internet has made it so easy for us mere mortals to challenge your supercilious assumptions. Crawl back under your stone!

Just recently I read that the NHS wants us to take more responsibility for our health but they don’t like it when we do.

Suggest outraged emails to Beeb programme.

Londinium in reply to Treepie

That's code for: we are dismantling the Nhs and privatising chunks of it to Richard Brandon and we are enabling usa health insurance companies to further inflate their vast wealth off the backs of everyone in Britain.


That is interesting - would you like to post it as a new post so more people are likely to see it? :-)

I'd happily leave it to my doctor if the hospital would do the right tests!!!!!!

Londinium in reply to silverfox7

Practically every doctor that I've seen at a gp practice or hospital has lacked the education, skill, and competence to accurately interpret my test results and they've failed to take action to successfully rectify my lab results and health.

silverfox7 in reply to Londinium

It was really a tongue in cheek comment about we don't get the right testing anyway. My doctor admits she hasn't a clue and happy to refer me elsewhere! I'd happily help her get her head around it if she asked though!

I had a quick look at this and I must say that I find parts of the questionnaire for patients incredibly patronizing and infantile even in their expression. To be honest I think it is another box ticking exercise for the medical profession while there will be little practical value in its outcomes but agree that if we all inundated them with the standardised response pdf version, at least it could be a good venting outlet.

Along the same lines but I have heard of a lot of friends having cataracts done . They are referred to private hospital from Specsavers.

You might say a jolly good job, but at what extra cost is this service being offered ? Cherry picking springs to mind , not sure. I guess if it’s you having your cataracts done it’s good. I just think things need to be judged fair !

The thyroid test cited had returned low TSH, followed up with ‘sky high antibodies’, so whether the antibodies were TPO, TRAb or both, the person mentioned was probably hyper.

The rather smug GP said she usually discussed the possibility of thyroid disease with patients complaining of persistent tiredness, but I’ll bet most people who turn out to be hyper go to their GPs with persistent coughs, feeling too hot, tremor, sometimes struggling to get words out properly, rapid heart rate, sudden weight loss etc, and may be tested for all sorts of things before TSH is even considered. With all the other common symptoms of being hyper, tiredness barely registers on the ‘worry index’.

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