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Sex Hormone Binding Globulin and Hypothyroid
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Questions in the Thyroid forum are answered by Mark Lupo, MD. Topics covered include Goiter, Graves Disease, Hyperthyroid, Parathyroid/Calcium Problems, Thyroid Cancer, Thyroid Nodules/Cysts, Thyroiditis, Thyroid & Pregnancy, Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH), Thyroid Tests, and Thyroid Surgery.

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Sex Hormone Binding Globulin and Hypothyroid

I have been suffering from numerous symptoms for years (fatigue, moodiness, menstual issues, hair loss, digestive issues, etc). I had my thyroid "checked" by GPs and they said it was normal. Recently, I had an endocrinologist test me. He said it was "within range."

But I am older and wiser and left with a copy of my labs this time. My TSH is 3.7 <.35-5.5> and my anti-ATPO is 84.5 <0-60>. My T4 is 1.45 <.89-1.76> and my T3 is 2.54 <2.3-4.2). I realize my T4 looks good and my T3 is just on the low side, but after reading that many women feel best with a TSH of 1.0 or so, I wonder if I am hypothyroid... It would really make sense with all of my symptoms.

But - I've also read (link at bottom) that hypothyroid is associated with a low Sex Hormone Binding Globulin - but mine is high (174 <8-112>), which is associated with hyperthyroid. Is Sex Hormone Binding Globulin really much of a factor in diagnosing thyroid issues and could I still have hypothyroid despite this?

I am going to see another doc, one who seems to be really good at listening and using a combination of labs and symptoms to diagnose/treat. But I won't see her for a few weeks. So just trying to get educated in the mean time.

THANK YOU!

PS - reading all of the information and stories here has been very helpful. I'm quite anxious and knowing I'm not crazy and not alone really helps.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=2392320&dopt=Abstract
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You are right about SHBG in hypo & hyper thyroid states.  SHBG is not used in the diagnosis and I would not factor that in when considering whether or not you need treatment.  You have symptoms, your TSH is >3 and your antibodies are positive -- my practice is to offer a trial of treatment in these cases.
2 Comments
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Tappy im no doc, but I have heard many who had your TSH levels feel crappy and felt much better when at 1 like you said.

I too am having odd symptoms related to hypo including hair loss rapid.  My endo said nope, if your in the level and your antibodies are good buh bye.. can't help ya!  I've talked to many women who say this is BS - and that they have found docs who do treat them.

I hope you find some answers, seems unless we are screaming soemthing via tests nobody will do a darn thing!
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97953_tn?1193367871
Mark Lupo, M.D.Blank
Thyroid & Endocrine Center of Florida
Sarasota, FL
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