Help with results please?: My blood test in... - Thyroid UK

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Help with results please?


My blood test in September showed antibodies of 1539, but as my TSH was 3.50 I was told no medication was needed. My symptoms have continued to worsen so I went back to my docs where I broke down in tears only for him to tell me all of my symptoms were down to low mood :-( He didn't let the fact that my other symptoms came way before the mood swings/depression get in the way of a good story! He grudgingly agreed to test me again but at our practice it's done by a nurse so I ensured I was getting T3, T4 & antibodies as well as TSH. However, got the results on a print out today and T3 has not been done, despite my request. My TSH is now 4.76 which they describe as borderline despite the range being 0.4-4, my free T4 ,which was not done last time, is 15.1 (not really sure what this means?) and interestingly my antibodies have come down to 1384. I've gone gluten free so am really hoping this has made a difference to my antibodies but am fed up that with all this going on they have just made a note that I should be monitored and the tests repeated in 6 months. Can anyone give me an opinion on my results please and hopefully some advice as to what I can do now? Thanks so much :-)

11 Replies

This is a quote from an article in Pulse Online by Dr Toft, ex President of the British Thyroid Association. If you want a copy to give to your GP (send it to him before your next appointment so he can read the whole article). Email for a copy.

2 I often see patients who have an elevated TSH but normal T4. How should I be managing them?

The combination of a normal serum T4 and raised serum TSH is known as subclinical hypothyroidism. If measured, serum T3 will also be normal. Repeat the thyroid function tests in two or three months in case the abnormality represents a resolving thyroiditis.2

But if it persists then antibodies to thyroid peroxidase should be measured. If these are positive – indicative of underlying autoimmune thyroid disease – the patient should be considered to have the mildest form of hypothyroidism.

In the absence of symptoms some would simply recommend annual thyroid function tests until serum TSH is over 10mU/l or symptoms such as tiredness and weight gain develop. But a more pragmatic approach is to recognise that the thyroid failure is likely to become worse and try to nip things in the bud rather than risk loss to follow-up.

Treatment should be started with levothyroxine in a dose sufficient to restore serum TSH to the lower part of its reference range. Levothyroxine in a dose of 75-100µg daily will usually be enough.

infomaniac in reply to shaws

That's very helpful Shaws, thanks a lot :-).

The article is great but I would be a bit worried about sending it to my doc...isn't it like telling them they don't know their job?

I'm trying to get my head round this but am ashamed to say I find it all very confusing. I had thought, due to my high antibodies that I must have Hashimotos (though the doc never said) but now it looks like I have subclinical hypothyroidism. Can you have both at the same time? I note that the quote above states "the patient should be considered to have the mildest form of hypothyroidism". I do have a number of symptoms but I don't have the dreadful tiredness that others suffer from, nor do I feel the cold much, so I guess that explains that one.

Sorry to drone on but what do you make of my antibodies going down? Could it be due to me being gluten free?

Thanks a lot for your help.

shawsAdministrator in reply to infomaniac

I am not medically qualified but our TSH can change several times during the day so I assume (someone will correct me) that the antibodies can do the same.

Many GP's only know the basics of thyroid problems. The first is don't give meds until the TSH reaches 10 although some will prescribe at a lower TSH due to symptoms. Many, many do not know clinical symptoms and diagnose the patients with anything other than a thyroid gland problem.

As you say, your symptoms are mild, but how ill do you have to be before you get get treatment.

Dr Toft recommends, if you have antibodies and symptoms, to 'nip things in the bud'. I am not medically qualified but I think it may help reduce the attack on your thyroid gland.and you won't get so very ill.

I cannot understand the point of a reference range if GP's are going to ignore it!!!. I had the same trouble with my daughters GP her TSH was 4.97 (0.50 - 4.2) and was told she was borderline!! I went to see another doctor in the practise but she stood with the other GP on this although she did agree to retest again and her results were TSH 9.34.

My advice is to see another GP and explain that you are OVER the range and want treatment.

Its makes me so mad when GP's do this and patients just get worse.

I really don't know what to do for the best to be honest. I have read a lot about the Thyroid and Autoimmune disease but I don't feel like I am qualified to stand my ground with a professional...even if that professional doesn't seem to know what he's talking about!

Taking selenium can help to reduce your high antibody levels as well as helping to convert T4 to T3 in the body.

For adivce on the role of vitamins see;


Thanks Maddie, I'll certainly have a look at that link. I eat Brazil nuts almost every day so think I'm OK on the Selenium front. I've cut out Gluten, Soya, Fluoride, Peanuts...something has to work surely!

That's very interesting Maddie. I didn't know about most of these. As one of my symptoms is low mood I have considered B vits for a while but am looking for recommendations for good ones-any ideas?

Maddie in reply to infomaniac

Hi - I did not receive an email to let me know that you had asked me a question, hence the delay in responding to you.

I'm not sure if you are asking about multi B vits or individual ones, let me know - Maddie

Hidden in reply to Maddie

See reply below... :-)



Hi Maddie-I meant a recommendation for B Vitamins if you have one? Thanks.

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