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Can You Have Thyroid Problems With Normal Tsh

Inquire About A T3 Drug

Why You Still Have Thyroid Symptoms With Normal TSH and T4

There are many doctors who consider the addition of a T3 hormone, in the form of Cytomel , wholly unnecessary and problematic. They will point to the fact that it is prone to rapid uptake in the intestines and may quickly turn a hypothyroid problem into a hyperthyroid problem. T3 hormones can also interfere with T4 blood test results and complicate the monitoring of your disease. All of these things are true, but to a degree.

If you are able to maintain control of your TSH and T4 but are feeling unwell, the addition of Cytomel may improve your symptoms, according to research from Spain and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

The same research suggests that the combination of Cytomel and levothyroxine may improve symptoms without any additional side effects compared to levothyroxine alone.

Symptoms Of High Tsh: Understanding What Hypothyroidism Looks Like

The human body in an astoundingly complexnetwork of interconnected parts and processes. Even if you intuitively knowthis, it is often shocking to consider just how interconnected it is,and how much organs and systems depend on each other to function.

Take the thyroid: this small gland in the neck is rarely thought about and may seem far removed from the rest of the body, but it is largely responsible for regulating how the body consumes energy. That means that every motion is impacted by the functioning of the thyroid.

When the thyroid is malfunctioning, the rest of the body is as well. Hypothyroidismwhen the body doesnt produce as much thyroid hormone as it needscan have debilitating mental and physical symptoms that impact your life. And one of the most important signs of hypothyroidism is an overabundance of thyroid-stimulating hormone, also known as TSH.

Millions of Americans have high TSH, but manyarent aware that anything is wrongor dont realize the symptoms they have arerelated to their thyroid. Knowing the symptoms of high TSH can put you on theroad to receiving the care you need to improve your quality of life and protectyour long-term health.

What If They Never Identified Your Immune System Triggers You Would Get Sicker Wouldnt You

Hashimotos is the most common cause of low thyroid.

New research out this year proves that when women have TPO antibodieswhich, along with anti-thyroglobulin antibodies are what you test for when youre lookng for Hashimotos-have a decreased quality of life even if their TSH and their hormone levels are normal.

Case in point just yesterday, I was talking to a new patient and she told me she just found out from her endocrinologist that she has a raging case of Hashimotos.

But the doctor cant do anything for her because her TSH is normal.


I was floored. Its like her doctor thinks shes handcuffed.

I know youve got these antibodies, but I cant do anything for you because of some bogus artificial rule that the patients TSH must be higher than X number etc.

The doctor could do something for her, IF the doctor had training in non-drug management.

But I guess in fairness the only thing that her doctor can do is prescribe Thyroid hormone replacement. Doctors guidelines state that if TSH levels are normal, , then the doctor cant do anything for the patient.

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Reasons You May Have Thyroid Symptoms Even Though Your Tsh Levels Are Normal:

  • The pituitary which produces TSH is dysfunctional and does not produce enough TSH even though there are low levels of thyroid hormone in circulation.This is considered secondary hypothyroidism.
  • The testing margins of normal TSH are too wide for optimal health, resulting in subclinical hypothyroidism.
  • Under-conversion of T4 to the active T3 form, which happens due to certain medications, high cortisol levels , high carbohydrate / low protein diets, selenium deficiency and kidney/liver dysfunction.
  • Elevated or decreased thyroid binding globulin that transports thyroid hormone while in circulation.
  • Elevated levels of reverse T3 which displaces active T3 thyroid hormones from cellular receptors, and is caused by stress, inflammation, low calorie diets, infections and kidney/liver dysfunction.
  • Autoimmunity in the form of Hashimotos thyroiditis where the body attacks thyroid peroxidase or thyroglobulin . Approximately 90% of primary hypothyroidism is autoimmune and caused by Hashimotos thyroiditis.

As our doctors rely on a single test such as TSH to determine hypothyroidism, misdiagnosis is common. The TSH test is an indicator of pituitary production, and cannot be relied upon as way to measure the effectiveness of the thyroid gland which it regulates. If you are experiencing thyroid symptoms despite a normal TSH level, request your Free T4, Free T3, and thyroid antibodies be tested. You may need to visit a Naturopath to get these tests done.

What Do The Results Mean

Can You Have Thyroid Problems With Normal Labs

High TSH levels can mean your thyroid is not making enough thyroid hormones, a condition called hypothyroidism. Low TSH levels can mean your thyroid is making too much of the hormones, a condition called hyperthyroidism. A TSH test does not explain why TSH levels are too high or too low. If your test results are abnormal, your health care provider will probably order additional tests to determine the cause of your thyroid problem. These tests may include:

  • T4 thyroid hormone tests

Learn more about laboratory tests, reference ranges, and understanding results.

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Avoid Generics Or Get A Stable Multiple

Some HMOs and insurance companies will automatically override your doctor’s requested brand and supply you with a generic levothyroxine made by one of many different manufacturers.

There is nothing inherently wrong with generic drugs. The problem with this practice, however, is that you may be switched from one generic brand to the next every month without even knowing it. And, each time you are, you may receive a product that has a slightly different potency or is closer to the expiration date that you might otherwise prefer.

To ensure medication consistency, ask your doctor to write “no generic substitution” or “DAW” on the prescription. If your insurer threatens a higher drug copay, ask your doctor to write a motivation outlining why the specific brand is necessary.

If your insurer denies your request, try asking doctor to write a prescription for a six-month drug supply. Once received, check to ensure the drugs are all from the same manufacturer and are within the expiration date for at least the next six months.

Consider Other Levothyroxine Brands

Levothyroxine is the generic name of the drug marketed under many different brand names. The majority of people first starting treatment will be prescribed the Synthroid brand. Other available brands include Levoxyl, Levothroid, and Unithroid.

While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration tightly regulates the type, purity, and amount of key active and inactive ingredients in a drug, different manufacturers may use different fillers and binding ingredients, some of which may affect drug absorption or trigger adverse symptoms. Changing brands may potentially alleviate unintended side effects. Talk to your doctor about whether this might be right for you.

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Possible Causes Of Hypothyroidism

There is no one cause of hypothyroidism, nor isthere always a direct linear path between one of the precipitating events andits onset. However, it is important to know the potential causes so that youcan connect the dots with possible symptoms.

Major causes of hypothyroidism include:

  • Hashimotos thyroiditis. This autoimmune disease produces antibodies that attack the tissues of the thyroid, causing it to produce less thyroid hormone.
  • Medication. Certain medications, including lithium, can lower thyroid hormone production.
  • Hyperthyroidism treatment. A number of treatments for hyperthyroidism, including radioactive iodine treatment, can impair thyroid function.
  • Radiation therapy. Radiation therapy for conditions unrelated to the thyroid may cause the thyroid to shrink.

There are a few other possible causes, includingiodine disorders and some pregnancy-related risks. Well take a look at thedangers of the latter just below. But it is important to know that if you fallinto any of these risk categories, the seemingly-mild symptoms might be so muchmore.

Why You Still Have Hypothyroid Symptoms Despite Normal Tsh

Do You Have Thyroid Problems With Normal TSH?

In Canada, doctors rely on the Thyroid Stimulating Hormone test to determine if your symptoms are due to hypothyroidism. Unfortunately, you can still have hypothyroid symptoms even when your TSH results are normal, which can severely impact your health and quality of life.

The thyroid makes and stores the thyroid hormones T4 and T3 that affect nearly every cell in your body, and the varied symptoms attributed to hypothyroidism reflect that.

Common symptoms your doctor may look for include fatigue, weight gain, depression, hair loss, constipation, menstrual irregularities, and lowered body temperature, but there are many more! You must also look out for combinations of symptoms like poor circulation, muscle cramps, lowered immunity, slow wound healing, low stomach acid , dry skin, swollen face, and the loss of the outer third of your eyebrows.

TSH is produced by the pituitary gland in your brain in response to how much thyroid hormone is in your bloodstream. If there isnt enough, the pituitary will produce more TSH to tell thyroid peroxidase to produce more. And if there is too much, it will produce less TSH to down-regulate the signal to the thyroid.

In theory, TSH tells us when this feedback loop isnt working and is causing hypothyroidism, but doctors are expecting a lot from this test: it over-generalizes and ignores many other reasons you may have low thyroid symptoms.

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Tsh : What Low And High Tsh Levels Actually Mean

One in eight people with ovaries will develop a thyroid disorder during their lifetime. And the real kicker is that an estimated 60% of people with thyroid disorders are unaware of their condition. But there’s one great way to peek under the hood of your thyroid to understand more about it: testing thyroid-stimulating hormone , which stimulates the thyroid gland to produce thyroid hormones.

Thyroid hormones are important for metabolism, general health, your sense of well-being, and many, many processes,”explains Modern Fertility Chief Medical Advisor and reproductive endocrinologist Dr. Nataki Douglas, MD, PhD. “But in pregnancy, thyroid hormones are also important for the health especially the neurological development and cognitive functioning of your developing baby.

Here are the key things to know about TSH:

Can Hypothyroidism Be Prevented Or Avoided

There is no known way to prevent hypothyroidism. It is more common in women than men, especially those older than 60 years of age. You also are at greater risk if you:

  • Have a family history of thyroid disease.
  • Have been treated with radioactive iodine or anti-thyroid medicines.
  • Have received radiation therapy to your neck or upper chest.
  • Have had thyroid surgery.

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What Is Normal Thyroid Function

It’s first helpful to understand how the thyroid works to understand your thyroid blood test results.

The thyroid gland is part of the endocrine system, located at the base of the neck. The hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and the thyroid gland all work together to regulate thyroid hormone function. Thyrotropin-releasing hormone from the hypothalamus signals the release of thyroid-stimulating hormone from the pituitary gland. TSH then stimulates, as the name implies, the production of thyroid hormones from the thyroid gland.

The thyroid gland produces an inactive thyroid hormone called thyroxine and an active thyroid hormone called triiodothyronine . The inactive thyroid hormone converts peripherally to either activate thyroid hormone or an alternative inactive thyroid hormone .

Hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis

As mentioned, the thyroid gland gets input from the hypothalamus via the pituitary gland. In return, free T3 and free T4 send feedback to the hypothalamus and pituitary glands to regulate normal function.

When the hypothalamus senses low thyroid hormone levels, it increases TRH, causing the pituitary gland to increase TSH. The elevated TSH levels then increase thyroid hormone production, returning the body to normal function.

Small changes in free T3 or free T4 can result in significant changes in TSH. However, small changes in TSH may not reflect significant changes in free T3 or free T4.

What To Consider In Your Personal And Family Medical Histories

Do You Have Thyroid Problems With Normal TSH?

Its important to give your physician as many details as possible about your personal medical history, as well as family history . Be sure to discuss:

  • Your general state of healthparticularly any changes you have noticed in your general overall health.
  • Your familys health historyespecially if a close relative has been diagnosed with hypothyroidism .
  • Whether youve ever had thyroid surgery, or radiation to your neck to treat cancer.
  • Any medicines you may be taking that could cause hypothyroidism .

Physical ExaminationLooking for Signs of HypothyroidismYour physician will perform a thorough examination and look for physical signs of hypothyroidism, including:

  • Evidence of dry skin
  • Swelling around the eyes and legs
  • Slower reflexes
  • Slower heart rate

Blood Tests: Hypothyroidism can be detected by different blood tests.

  • TSH Test. A thyroid-stimulating hormone or TSH is a blood test that measures the amount of T4 that the thyroid is being signaled to make. If you have an abnormally high level of TSH, it could mean you have hypothyroidism.
  • T4 Test. The thyroid gland produces T4 . The free T4 and the free T4 index are blood tests that, in combination with a TSH test, can let your physician know how your thyroid is functioning.

Normal and Abnormal TSH Ranges

An easy way to remember how the thyroid works–think about supply and demand. As the T4 level falls, the TSH rises. As the T4 level rises, the TSH falls. However, not everyone with hypothyroidism has elevated levels of TSH.

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What Else Can Cause Low Or High Tsh

TSH levels can be impacted by illness , pregnancy, medications, food or supplements, and even a lack of sleep. There are also fluctuations in TSH throughout the day: TSH tends to be higher in the mornings and decreases throughout the day.

The small variations we just mentioned mean that occasionally TSH levels tested some time apart don’t match up. But even accounting for factors that can cause small amounts of variation between tests, TSH results are an important piece of insight about whats going on with your thyroid gland. If you get two TSH results that dont match up, for example one is in the high range and the other is in the normal” range, its possible that in the first test your level was temporarily elevated it doesnt necessarily mean that one of the test results is wrong.

If youve done multiple TSH tests and the results seem discordant, talk with your doctor. They can look at the two results in context of the reference ranges from the lab where you took your sample and help you interpret them. They may also order some additional testing to check other aspects of thyroid function.

Why Is The Tsh Test Unreliable

For myself and many others, the TSH test was not reliable. Consequently, I was not treated properly for hypothyroidism and lived a miserable existence. Read my story. Before relying on the TSH test, consider the following:

  • Dr. Utiger, the creator of the TSH test said that body temperature is a better test of thyroid function than TSH. 5
  • During the day TSH levels can vary as much as 200%
  • During pregnancy a womans pituitary gland can be damaged, a condition known as Sheehans Syndrome. When this damage happens the result is that the TSH looks normal even though the patient has hypothyroidism.
  • TSH measures hormone levels in the blood, rather than tissue levels 6
  • Some patients cannot convert inactive T4 to active T3. TSH does not measure this conversion issue. 7
  • TSH does not measure cellular receptor hormone resistance. 8
  • Adrenal fatigue is not measure by TSH. 9
  • Paradoxically, a low TSH may occur with a low thyroid function. 10

I have sadly come across very few doctors who can accept the fact that a normal or low TSH may still occur with a low thyroid as a result of the test, thousands are denied treatment. Barry Durrant Peatfield

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High Tsh Means Low Thyroid Activity

To begin, lets explain a bit of confusing nomenclature. It would seem logical to assume that high TSH means that you might have hyperthyroidism, an overabundance of thyroid hormones. But in fact, the opposite is true.

TSH is produced by the pituitary gland. When thethyroid is functioning normally, the pituitary produces a normal amount. Butwhen the thyroid is underperforming, it starts to produce more and more, hopingto kick the thyroid into gear. While this could indeed elevate thyroid hormoneproduction in a person with a healthy thyroid, it doesnt fix a malfunctioningthyroid. It isnt like trying to jump a stalled carits more like turning thekey again and again.

Thyroid underactivity is common according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, nearly 5% of Americans over the age of 12 have hypothyroidism. And while this can strike anyone, you are at a higher risk for it if you are in one or more of these groups:

  • Women
  • People who have given birth in the last 6 months
  • People who have a history of thyroid disease in their family
  • People with autoimmune diseases

Thats why when you are experiencing the symptoms of high TSH, it is important to see a medical professional. You can often avoid serious, long-term health complications by getting the right thyroid function tests and starting treatment as soon as possible.

Hypothyroidism Caused By Elevated Tbg

Been Told Your TSH Thyroid Levels Are “Normal” Think Again

Thyroid-binding globulin is the protein that transports thyroid hormone through the blood. When thyroid hormone is bound to TBG, it is inactive and unavailable to tissues. High levels of TBG reduce levels of free thyroid hormone, causing hypothyroid symptoms. 59363-7/abstract” rel=”nofollow”> 13) Patients with this pattern have normal TSH and T4, low T3, high T3 uptake and high TBG.

Elevated estrogen can raise TBG and cause hypothyroidism. Estrogen may become elevated due to the use of birth control pills and estrogen hormone replacement therapy. The treatment for this pattern is to clear excess estrogen from the body.

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