Thyroid UK
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D3 or not D3 ?

Hi all,

Im wondering if my problem is TOTALLY due to lack of vitamin D3.

I have loads of symptoms:

odema (everywhere)

carple tunnel syndrome

plantar fasciitis (hence the name flatfeet)

pins and needles and numb toes

painful joints

a good forgettery

average morning body temp 36.3

feeling 101 years old with no energy.

Both of my sisters have hypo (I think my mum had also, but was misdiagnosed)

But I had a tsh test done at the doc which came back "normal" (1.9 range 0.35-4.5) taken at 10.30am)

although my cholesterol, serum creatinine and ESR were all raised

(not sure why tests are done as doc never picked up on these)

So 2 weeks later I got a private test done: (8.30am)

(T4) 98 nmol/L 59 - 154

T S H 3.57 mIU/L 0.27 - 4.2

FREE THYROXINE 16.5 pmol/l 12.0 - 22.0

FREE T3 4.9 pmol/L 3.1 - 6.8


Thyroglobulin Antibody 15.8 IU/mL 0-115(Negative)

Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies <5.0 IU/mL <34 (Negative)

I have recently taken approximatley 6 normal vit d tabs and felt much better, less nauseaus and a little more energy, and having seen these links;

(ok its all a bit technical and I dont fully understand)

I am wondering if D3 could be my total problem or just part of it, also if i take thyroxine when not having a thyroid problem, would it do me any harm ?

I would be greatful and hopefully less confused if anyone has any thoughts on this,

Many thanks guys

28 Replies

Hi Thyroid and D would not cause all the symptoms you describe. vit d could certainly cause quite a few of them if low. Did you have a test? if not you can have the cheap one ,the same as NHS, see thyroid site, bloods. It is £25. If low essential you have a calcium test before treatment. D can make the calcium ( corrected calcium) go over range which is extremely dangerous. D is normally started, not too high, then both retested after 3 months, then increased D as required.Slightly raised ESR is not normally significant, it may be a bit of inflamation in the body, normally ignored unless very high.Thyroid drugs are very potent and can be dangerous if used when not needed. Some people do take them but thyroid effects the whole body, especially the heart and personally I would not do this. I have 6 weekly blood tests done for my thyroid.on treatment, You are right that T4 and Free T3 are essential but yours do look fine.,at the moment.Looking at them it would be worth rechecking all the 3 main ones in 6 months time If TSH goes higher, on those results T3 would be ok to lower it. T3 is usually taken along with thyroxine ( T4 ) unless there is a specific reason not to. Oedema or ascites ( tum ) can be many things and if it does not go down over night that should be looked at medically and treated. Carpal tunnel needs treatment of it`s own, possible even minor surgery.Have you had a diabetes check, as some of this could be that. It is hormonal too, you do not have to be fat etc. You need 2 blood tests for that Glucose and Hb1 Ac. You can get a rough guide from many pharmacists and have a free BM done ( finger prick)Do not have anything but water for at least 3 hours before. It might also be worth seeing a rheumatologist too,I hope that is some help to you.

Best wishes,



Good morning Jackie,

I am afraid that, even with some searching (e.g. and ), I am not sure what "BM" stands for. All the things it is shown as possibly meaning do not fit with a finger prick test.

I wonder if you could enlighten me and us, please?



Hi Rod, B.M is the finger prick test, with the machine all diabetics use to test their blood sugar daily, or like me many times day and night. The venous blood tests are only done at various intervals, My endo says that BM is a far better test. It ,of course, goes up after food., on treatment if diabetic, it is important that it does not go too high or drugs need altering. I have never known what BM means either? However it is what all medics refer to for the Finger prick test. If you find ouI I would love to know. I expect it just stands for blood machine



Aha! Right - what I think of as Blood Glucose Meter (BGM).

Sometimes Blood Sugar Meter.

Wiki says this:

"... sometimes incorrectly called BM Stix (after one of the companies that makes the test kit)"

What does BM stand for in blood glucose readings?

'Boehringer Mannheim’. They were the company that originally made the ‘BM Stix’. The company is now called Roche but immortalised as BM.


Thanks Rod, interesting .I have never had any doctor or nurse refer it to anything other than BM, probably like vacuum cleaner, and hoover!I have had it mentioned very often by doctors and nurses. Like every thing that is shortened nowadays.



Rod, I wonder if you watched "Casualty"last night.? I do not normally watch medical progs., unless documentaries. However, I know some of my eminent consultants advise the Prog makers.I happened to watch it and even they mentioned BM`s. Some WEB sites are good but nothing like info from a top consultant in their own field. There are a lot of terrible doctors but to be eminent, in my experience, they care about the patients and listen to them and certainly follow all the latest research etc. Some of which is not on any WEB site.

Best wishes,



Hi Jackie,

You must think I'm very rude, having read through other questions I realise that I should have pressed the reply to this button. Thank you for you lovely informative reply.

I have eventually got an appointment for blood test tomorrow (NHS in crisis or what) and have asked for vit D calcium and iron test to be added.

My ESR was 44 and came down to 22

I first went to this new doc as i had chest pains and was sat at home wondering how to put this to the old receptionist so she would let me see the doc, . . riddiculous .. . so i changed docs, Yes tyroid can affect the heart, the new doc did ecg and listened but all ok, I conclude that its prob indigestion or muscel as others have discovered.

My thick skin is all over my body been with me fo over 3 months

I thought carpel t was thyroid related as so many on this sight have related (mine started months earlier when I woke up in the mornings with numb/dead hands and wrists, thought I had slept on them funny, had to shake them to get feeling back)

I origionally went to the doc with plantar F, same as Rod ... sent to physio who said I have weak senses on one side. I asked doc about this and she said she hadnt had a report from the physio....I asked to be sent to a neurologist as she didnt think was thyroid...I saw her panic and quickly said she needed more blood tests.

(Changed docs since)

Wow this was only meant to be a thank you...sorry

Flat feet


Hi A lot of people do not realise about the"click on". Make sure you have a copy of your blood tests and ranges, whenever and where ever done, as ranges for most tests alter from different Labs. Do not just accept when the doctor says " normal" ,Also without a test for T4 and free T3 impossible to know what is happening, it is all about costs. You can pay for the extra basic thyroid tests, or any other but that makes it expensive. here, my NHS will no longer test for FT3 ,so I have to pay for mine, disgusting, but that is the NHS!

I hope you soon feel better. I was hypo for 20 years before treatment but I thought that was in "the dark ages".

Best wishes,



Ok and thanks again



Just to say if you continue with vit d3 then it may benefit you to take magnesium too. I've been reading quite a bit recently how important it is x


Forget your doctor's 'normal' They do not know the clinical symptoms of hypothyroidism and it certainly sounds so much like it with the range of symptoms you state above.

Unfortunately most doctors are not trained to look/listen to the patient and diagnose from what the patient tells them. Your TSH is high although GP's have been told not to prescribe until it reaches 10 (horrendous) some GP's may prescribe a bit earlier.

If your GP is adamant and ignores your symptoms, if you can afford it have a private consultation. Thyroiduk do have a list of sympathetic doctors,

I am afraid it is taking your health into your own hands and read/learn as much as possible.

I will give you some links and you can read to get a bit of information/knowledge.

If your GP hasn't done a Vit B12 or Vit D you must ask for these blood tests as they are important.

(some of the links within may not work but you can click on the topics above as well)

topics at the top of the page should interest you.


The single significant, obvious symptom of low vitamin D that I had was nausea. At least, I had nausea, which got worse over a long time, when I supplemented with vitamin D3, the nausea was reduced. Found that when I stopped the D3, the nausea returned, so I restarted the D3, and the nausea went away again. That is, some evidence but not at the level of proof - strong circumstantial evidence?

Not sure what you mean by "normal vit D tabs"?

I have been taking fairly inexpensive vitamin D3 in oil capsules at up to 6000 IU a day.

At one point (before starting) I had questionably low calcium - a repeat test for confirmation was right on the edge.

My GP endorsed what I had done in having tests from:

And in supplementing as I had done. I actually think he was happy because he did not have to do anything!

I too had plantar fasciitis - but that improved with getting decent thyroid levels. (I have the very opposite of flat feet - pes cavus. :-) )

I suspect that you have a mix of thyroid and vitamin D symptoms - possibly with a sprinkling of other things like, maybe, iron deficiency, vitamin B12, folates. If you could get tested for these as well and take appropriate action?


1 like

Hi Rod

As I said to Jackie you must think I'm very rude, having read through other questions I realise that I should have pressed the reply to this button. Thank you for taking the time to reply to me

I have noticed, as you, that taking Vit d makes me less nauseaus, I stoped it and was naseaus again. I havd stopped taking them as I had a blood test due for vit d. (3 weeks waiting for an appointment !)

I wanted to ask you about your Plantar F,

Do you think it definitley was thyroid related ?

Your views on the info below would be appreciated

I cry out in pain sometimes when driving or at home resting due to sharp shooting pains in my heel (I dont walk or work any more due to this and painful feet)

I read some where ;

"Medical causes of absent ankle reflexes such as vitamin deficiency, endocrine or inflammatory neuropathies and vascular disorders "


"the plantar elicits the ankle reflex"


As my knee also gives me pain wondered about the Plantaris muscel;

Plantar flexor of ankle; also flexes knee

I attach an artical about thyroid and PF, there don't see to be many about, but not sure I should beleive this.

the knee bone connected to the thigh bone and all that Ha ha :-)

Thanks again FF


I think I am the total opposite to you. I have pes cavus - very high arches/insteps and extraordinarily wide feet. :-)

Over a period of three or four years, I complained about what I think was PF, had TSH test, 2.something. A few more things happened. PF worsened. TSH rose. Eventually, got above local range at 5.something and started levothyroxine. PF relieved.

BUT a few other things need to be put in the mix. I also had facial pain, I started regular vitamin B12. I got shoes which fitted better and allowed orthotic inserts - in particular a tiny bit of heel lift.

AND I suffered the very worst pain when I followed medical advice on doing exercises. They simply made my feet unbearable. Stretching Achilles on the stairs, standing on a wedge which went up. And even worse when I tried custom prescribed orthotics. One hour wearing them made my feet far worse for at least a week.

I am convinced that my PF was thyroid related. But I could be wrong.

The article is interesting.

I am now generally happy with my levothyroxine dose, I still take B12 1000 mcg regularly, I use what are sold as "diabetic" soft orthotic inserts which do NOT press on my arches, and I add a wedge to give a few millimetres of heel lift. Now I can happily walk without even thinking about PF.

I hope you get there as well. At its worst it was definitely in the not very nice camp.


Hi Rod,

Been there done that re the stretchin and inserts, inserts made my back and knees ache so stopped may be i'll try soft ones, like you, to see if it makes a diff. Pictured you with insoles on the top of your feet, being opposite condition to mine :-)

I hope it will get better when diagnosed and teated for thyroid.... will let you know.



You laugh! But I do find that all sorts of shoe issues do hurt the top of my feet - anything less than a decent tongue and laces tied to precisely the right tightness can be very uncomfortable after a short while.

Best of luck.


(You might know all this all ready)

Here is a link that might help

Threre are lots of other tips on this site, there were actual diagrams of how to lace but cant find them now.

I didnt know that there was a reason for the different ways of tying laces,( just fashion and to frustrate you in shoe shops) but i have been informed.

hope this helps


Indeed - diagrams seem essential!

Still I never run, so maybe not quite so important.:-)


Heres the site with diagrams (and many more ways of tying shoes (see first reply below)

all the best


It is definitely worth looking into the vitamin D but you might find that it doesn't get rid of all your symptoms. Your blood test results look like you could be borderline hypothyroid and might benefit from treatment. It would be worth getting your vitamin D sorted first. Sunshine is the best way but we all know how difficult that is in the UK!

It would also be worth looking at B12 too as many of your symptoms could be attributed to that. Iron is another important one. The pins and needles and numb toes were the symptoms that rang alarm bells with me. Mine has improved immensely since getting my B12 up, although I still have numb patches on my big toes and fear that might be permanent damage. If you get a red blood cell count done and your MCV is high, that is indicative of a B12 deficiency that has been a problem for a while. It doesn't hurt to take B12 anyway. As a maintenance dose, 1000mcg is a good amount but if you have low levels you really need 5000mcg or possibly more. If you can get a B12 test and it is below range, your doctor will give you B12 injections.

If getting these levels optimal doesn't get rid of your symptoms it may be that your thyroid levels, although in the normal range, might be low for you.

Carolyn x


WOW, Thank you all I didnt expect so many replies, Thanks Jackie, doc refused to do vit D test (said; you get out don't you?, this should be enough) have changed doc since and will try again.

ESR was 44 mm/h which concerned the new doc, The odema has been with me for at least six weeks amd most recently spread to hands.I have had 4 lots of blood taken for various conditions eg amongst others; lupus diabeties, B12, rheumatisim (and I think mad cow as well) all fine now testing for lymes, and PMR going back monday for resuts.

Thanks ssarahstella will buy some magnesium and decent D3, mine are cheapest superdrug vitD


Hit answer button too soon cont....thanks hevella, Shaws and carolynB, I am takind vitB12, all you comments are a great support, Doc did mention a trial of thyroxine, seeing him on Monday this is why I was wondering if it could do me any harm if not hypo.

Thanks again



Your new doctor sounds very sensible. Thyroxine is unlikely to do you any harm as your thyroid function looks a little sluggish from your tests and you do have many of the typical symptoms. If you do get adverse side-effects, they should go away if you stop it again. I suspect you will probably see some improvement on it though :)

If you have mild hypothyroidism, as your blood tests suggests, you will have trouble absorbing B12 so it would be a good idea to get a sublingual B12 supplement. Jarrows do a good one and you can buy it on Amazon if you can't find it in a local store. You need at least 1000mcg if you have an absorption problem, and if your B12 was below 500 in your latest test, you could do with taking 5000mcg daily for a while. You will likely always need to take B12, even if it is just the maintenance dose of 1000mcg. Also make sure it is methylcobalamin rather than cyanocobalamin. The former is ready for the body to use so will get your levels up much more easily.

Let us know how you get on.

Carolyn x


Thanks Carolyn,

Not that long ago I had a mild cold or bug on top of this, and I felt so ill I wanted to die , so if this is only mild I cant imagine what it would be like full blown. I will definitly try the sublingual B12 methylcobalamin and let you know how i get on at the docs.

Many thanks, Flatfoot



I'm certainly no expert like these other guys on here but I can tell you that I am hypo on levo and vit D3 amongst other things. It was thanks to this site that I asked my GP for Vit D test after I didn't feel the levo was correcting some of my problems i.e. muscle cramps and foot pain and general aches and pains. The results cam back that I was low in Vit D so I started taking them that I'd bought. I took a high dose of regular Vit D3 for about a month and the GP prescribed a low dose with calcium so I took these for about a month combined with a lower dose of the ones I have bought after which I was absolutely delighted that I could again walk without the searing pain and feet cramping up after only about 5 mins of exercise. I gradually decreased the dose over summer so that I was only taking the prescribed dose from the GP. I am pleased to say that I can walk for hours now without pain or discomfort and I am mostly free of night time cramps in my feet and legs. I still get the occasional aches and pains that you would expect at my age (58) but this has made such a change in my life. Now if only I could sort the other symptoms, that would be great.

Sue x


Hi Sue,

This makes me sure that I need to take some Vit D, so will ask new doc for test, Im glad you found out that this was your problem, and i hope it will solve some of, if not all, of mine. I wonder if my odema is caused by lack of vit D ?

FF x


Take a look at for some interesting bits and pieces of information.

I have lived in Crete for the past 10 years and my VitD is still only 36 when it should be around 60. Have been treating for a relying on the sun is not enough - especially as we become older ! The rays needed for Vit D have difficulty getting through the atmosphere due to pollution and then when they try to penetrate the skin are barred from doing their natural work because of sun creams and then they find there's no cholesterol in the body to help the conversion into VitD because the person is taking statins - and so on !!

There's an excellent site - which informs us about VitD and it's vast work within the body. It is more than a Vitamin as you will read....

Happy reading and hope you feel better soon. also has good articles on VitD and K2....sorry this is information overload - sorry !


Thanks Marz,

This information is most welcome, and the more the better.

thanks again



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