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Be Concerned over High Anti Thyroglobulin Antibodies?
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Be Concerned over High Anti Thyroglobulin Antibodies?

Hi,
I have had hashi's for 3.5 years now. Last Aug 2009 I consulted an endo who was the first to pull my anti tg ab, which was 1191 at the time. I take synthroid.  In January, I read a book that said people with hashi's should avoid all gluten b/c this perpetuates the auto-immune attack. So, I gave it up for one month and then had my labs pulled again.  My TSH is good at 1.72 on 75 mcg of Synthroid/day.  However, my anti tg ab has risen to 4,739! I can't find any info on several issues:
1.  Is this cause for concern? Do these elevated antibodies inflict any further damage than the thyroid?
2. Is there a way to lower them? Evidently not eating gluten didn't help! Do I need to try?

Even though my TSH is good, my energy is low, I experience muscle pain, sometimes heart palpitations, and daily headaches.  I have also read I should be taking Armour instead.

This is a very confusing disease! Any advice would be helpful.
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Avatar_f_tn
No, antibodies are very specific.  Thyroid antibodies attack the thyroid and nothing else.  I think excess concern over antibodies is unwarranted.  The antibodies are going to destroy your thyroid function eventually.  Is there any real advantage in slowing that down?  Once the thyroid is "dead", you are on 100% hormone replacement and things get a lot more atable and easier to deal with.

Some people claim that selenium decreases TPOab, not TGab.  So, no, I have never heard of anything to decrease TGab.

Your doctor should be testing your free T3 and free T4, not just TSH which is a pituitary hormone and a very poor diagnostic for thyroid function and meds evaluation.  It sounds to me like you are undermedicated and, therefore, still hypo.

In my personal opinion, if you are truly gluten intolerant (as defined by either antibody testing and/or small intestine biopsy), then you need to curtail your gluten intake.  If not, I don't believe it does a whole lot of good and can even be detrimental.
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Even after having my thyroid out 2 and half years ago I still have antibodies. Sadly the body seems to have a thing about anti-bodies and once you have them, you have them a very long time! Changing diet etc will not make them go away. As you see, even taking out the thyroid which they attack still does not rid them totally.
You may well be in the midst of a Hashimoto attack hence the suddenly high levels of antibodies and your tiredness etc. This is common with this disease and one you will have to keep an eye on, and sadly deal with it when it hits. You might find after a month or a week or even 6 months, (everyone is different) the attack subsides and the anti-bodies lower slightly back to where they were previously. The attacks might become more often and this is the sign that the thyroid is giving up the battle to fight them any longer.
  Mine did drop dramatically after the surgery but I still have them.
Ask your doctor about Armour.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank  you both for these comments.  Good points, about the gluten, gloolara, and about having the antibodies after having your thyroid removed, redheadaussie! I guess that does illustrate the problem!  I guess I can have an English muffin for breakfast!
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Avatar_f_tn
Just re-introduce the gluten slowly.  If you have been gluten-free for some time, you, in effect, MAKE yourself gluten-intolerant.  Eat too much right away, and it's going to affect you.  You can't binge.  It's kind of like alcohol. If you stop drinking, you reduce your tolerance and become a really cheap date!!!  Half an English muffim???
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Avatar_f_tn
Again a good idea, but as it turns out i'm not going to be reintroducing it just yet. I have a 10 y.o. son w/ type 1 diabetes and he's coincidentally being tested for celiac after a visit to his endo today. So, maybe the trial run was just good training.  But I will try just half an English muffin when the time comes! Or maybe just lick the toaster tray!
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Avatar_f_tn
I have TT in Sept 2007, then RAI in Oct.  In Nov 2008, left neck dissection and ultrasound with blood test follow up.  In Aug 2009, 2 suspicious nodes were found and FNA confirmed no tumor nor cancer cells.  In Aug 2010, FNA the same node, without changing on the size and shape and the result is non cancerous.  I took the blood test just after the FNA. The result is: T4 is 1.94, TSH <0.1, TgAb 133, Tg <0.1.

In Mar 2009, TgAb was 38 so I am afraid.
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