TSH levels and general anesthetic

I have got to have a lump removed from my wrist, and have got to have a general anesthetic, and had my pre op checks at the hospital. My last TSH level in December was 0.09. It had been 0.17. I am on 150mcg of levothyroxine and have Hashi's. I have been told that my TSH levels are far too low for an op, and the anesthetist will not do it past 0.05. I had to have another blood test to check it again, and the hospital are going to contact me. Has anyone else had this happen to them?

8 Replies

Just to be clear, is a general anaesthetic mandatory (i.e. they will not operate without) or your choice? Or is a local anaesthetic (or regional or whatever) a possibility?

That is, is there any mileage in discussing a local in order to sidestep this issue?


I can't have a local, because it is on my wrist. I managed to have a local last time, when I had a lump removed from my index finger of the same arm. That turned out to be a giant cell tumour. I was told that time that anything further up the arm would have to be a general anaesthetic. I still don't know what the lump is yet, even after an MRI scan, which is why it needs removed

Also, why is a general a problem if you're hypothyroid? I had an op this time last year and I was undiagnosed hypothyroid at the time. Can't be that dangerous then, can it.....

Unless things have changed dramatically since I was an orthopaedic theatre nurse some 30 years ago, nerve blocks were often given for hand wrist operations?

I had an operation on my spine a year past October and I'm hypothyroid with a very low tsh at that time and all was ok.

Jo xx

Here's alink that I found very useful regarding thyroid meds and having a general anesthetic - I think the general rule is take meds as normal but make sure the anesthetist knows your thryoid problems.


Moggie x

I have had six ops under GA with a TSH of 0.01 and the medics are not bothered!

I had an anesthetic last week and have struggled terribly since. I'm concerned the desparate feeling of exhaustion I can't shake off has been caused by this.😟

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