Hypochondriac or hypothyroid????

Hi guys-excuse the long rambling story but I am looking for some opinions as to whether I am losing my marbles or do indeed have a thyroid issue.

I’m a 30 year old female who has up to now been in good health. I have been suffering from extreme reflux since last September. I had gastritis 6 years ago which resolved itself and I was fine since then.

My G.P. conducted a full panel of blood tests. All came back normal except slightly raised TSH which in September came back at 6.02 (range 0.27-4.2).My free t4 was 14 (range 12-22).This was retested in November and TSH was 7.46 and fee T4 14.3.TPO was negative.

I had an endoscopy which was pretty much normal apart from small ulcer but I’m now on 80mg omeprazole/day which has only slightly improved matters and the reflux continues. Around the same time as the reflux started some other symptoms began and as well as feeling rotten due to reflux I noticed I was generally unwell. At my request my GP referred me to an endo who said my symptoms were not thyroid related.

Thyroid was retested around 3 weeks ago and G.P. rang to tell me that the results were pretty much the same (I did ask for the figures but the conversation wandered elsewhere). He has explained that its subclinical yada yada, therefore he does not want to treat and I get this,-in theory.

HOWEVER I am getting a whole range of odd symptoms which the G.P said could not be down to my thyroid as my TSH was not that out of range. So I am beginning to think I am losing my mind and it is all in my head. I am due to see endo again in 2 weeks (as some symptoms have come on since last saw him) and I am going to ask him to give me a trial of thyroxin to see if it resolves anything, not that I think he’ll agree to my suggestion.

In the meantime I’d appreciate your views on my symptoms which include:

1. Later lighter periods for the last 5 months or so when I have always been regular as clockwork;

2. I have noticed that the hair on my legs is beginning to thin out slightly- especially around the knees and near top of shin-I have experimented by not shaving them and though hair grew back it didn’t in all places despite not shaving for 5 weeks! Hair everywhere else is present and correct.

3. I am completely exhausted at the end of most days(although the odd time I have good days).Generally it’s so bad an exhaustion that it makes me feel almost sick and trembling-despite this when I go to sleep I am sleeping very lightly and keep waking up during the night which I never used to. I don’t feel like going out in the evening at weekend anymore, in fact I just would not have the energy which is not like me. It’s like I’m a totally different person.

4. In the last couple of weeks I thought my knees were swelling as the day went on. They are not painful though. Also there are two red almost shiny patches on the inside of each leg at knee level. There is no hair at all there. I asked my mum, who’s a nurse, to have a look and indeed she said they are somewhat swollen-it’s like there’s fluid in there. One of my legs also begins to buzz (that’s the only way I can describe it) in the evening. Are swollen knees a symptom of hypo as I thought it was only eyelids that swelled???

5. My muscles seem very heavy and I have said this repeatedly to my G.P and that I cannot exercise but I feel he is not listening. In the morning I am much better as the day progresses when I go up stairs etc. a heaviness hit me ,like 3 seconds after I’ve reached the top-like I’ve just put down a massive weight and my leg muscles are almost in spasm. Also my back gets tired and slightly sore in lumbar area as day progresses.

6. When my reflux started I started also getting very itchy armpits-embarrassing when at work. This has remained with me although I cannot physically see anything in them and the hair there seems to be growing ok.It’s worse when I am warm, which is not that often as I have always been an incredibly cold person.

7. Finally I have also lost weight like 4-5 kgs, which is odd as if hypo I should gain, but my appetite is not what it was.

I guess I’m just wondering if you guys think this could possible all be thyroid related with TSH only mildly elevated or if anyone has had similar symptoms. I’d appreciate any opinions. Also has anyone persuaded their doc to give trial treatment????

Thanks!

5 Replies

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  • Hello misty I don't really have an answer to your questions all I can say is- I was having vague weird symptoms over the last say 18 months have only been to gp around 6 times over that period but after 3visits he suggested testing tyroid. At that point mine was 4.5 TSH retested 2wks later and was 4.2 so nothing done. He said my thyroid was fine.i

    Then after 6 months got private full tyroid test done and went back with the results which then were 5.9 TSH Free t4 same as yours and asked him what he thought. He then said I think it Is failing and started me on levo. Yet to see if it works as just started but in 5 weeks I feel slightly improved. My leg hair had disappeared felt puffy tired hair dry and like a mop when wet just didn't feel quite right. It may well be worth your persuing things.

  • Sorry forgot to add that my lab ranges are the same as yours.

  • a TSH of 7.46 means your pituitary is telling your Thyroid to produce more hormone and well above your lab range of 4.2 - you've had 3 tests all above range (FT4 is low but in range).

    Why have blood tests when they are ignored? (as well as other obvious signs like being cold & fatigued).

    You are not a hypochondiac but experiencing hypothyroid symptoms proved by 3 blood tests (not just one) - how long does your GP want you to wait? Yes, they can offer a trial of Levo to see if you improve and it is NOTset in stone to wait until TSH reaches 10 (BTA advice).

    please see the main site for getting a diagnosis...

    thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/diagno...

    Meanwhile you can ask for Vitamin/mineral tests (as these tend to be low with low metabolism) Vit D3 (helped my aches/pains anyway) irons ferritin folate & B12 (esp B12 with stomach issues) and when you can, get rid of the omeprazole - maybe it helps short-term but will make things worse as stomach acid is actually there for a reason & reflux symptoms can actually be from low acid.

    Hope this helps! Please be aware that Docs seem to think of anything & everything before Thyroid problems! Jane :D

  • Thanks for your help.Most vits and mins already tested and came back within range.I am not a happy bunny on the omeprazole and it is not even providing that much relief which is another reason I suspect thyroid.Am due to go back to gastro next month so will see what she has to say.In the meantime have appt with endo next week and I am not planning on leaving his office unmedicated!I'll update on how I go anyway.

    This is a great website for general info and moral support!

  • Have to agree with Spareribs, you may very well have low stomach acid to begin with meaning you're not absorbing vital vitamins and minerals from your food which could cause all the other issues.

    Have a look at this

    chriskresser.com/what-every...

    Even by the TSH guidelines you're hypo and should be on some hormone. Your FT4 is low, it should be closer to mid ranger or higher ideally, but you should also get the FT3 test done the same time, and the other antibody test (TgAb) at the same time as the Tpo.

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