Can anyone clearly explain (like an idiots guide) to these levels?? I have Severe Graves Disease Hyperthyroidism, Thyroid Eye Disease and Thyrotoxic Myopathy. What levels mean what?? I have a complete mental block and I really need to pay attention to this as I am obviously not well at all and I must keep on top of this. Thanks so much guys.
Why don't you post your latest thyroid tests and include reference ranges (they vary lab to lab and have to come from your own lab report). Then we can help you to interpret them. It's often easier when you have some real numbers to use as examples.
I will try to define what the Thyroid tests mean, although as goolarra stated, it would be easier using your levels and ranges as an example. We will start with TSH = Thyroid Stimulating Hormone, Its name is what it is, you have a gland in your brain named the Pituitary gland, it is like a sensor, it detects when you T3 hormone is low, when the T3 is low, it send another hormone (TSH) to "Bump" or stimulate the Thyroid gland between your adams apple and the collar bone to produce and secrete a hormone called T4 into your System, then your body converts this T4 hormone to T3, this is the hormone you body needs to function. So when the T3 is low, the TSH gets higher. (So when the T3 is low, the TSH is high, and when the T3 is high, the TSH is low) So you now know what TSH is, when you get a TSH (Blood) Test, you receive your TSH level and a Range, which is a high and a low (I will not get into wether the ranges are valid or not, because we want to keep it simple) In a perfect world, you would have a good thyroid as long as your level of TSH was in between these low and high ranges. Now for T4, I mentioned T4 was a hormone produced and secreted into your system by the Thyroid Gland, The same happens here, they take your blood sample and detect the level of T4 and again if it falls between the low and high range, you would be considered as having a normal thyroid. and this is your T4 level, now after your system grabs all of the T4 it needs to convert to T3, a Residual exists, or a leftover floating around, this left over is known as Free T4, and Free T4 is one of the tests done along with TSH, so far, Now we get to T3, as stated above, your body converts T4 to T3, this being the most important hormone, because this is the gas in your car! . So your System uses all the T3 it needs and just like the T4, we have left overs, these left overs are known as Free T3, and if you are being seen by an MD, you want to make sure you get the Free T3 and Free T4, because without these two results, its like driving in a snow storm without wipers. So you have it TSH, Free T3 and Free T4 Best Regards FTB4
Thanks very much for this. I hope newbies like me wont be confounded any more but even just scanning this, it is pretty confusing to understand you must admit!! I am really grateful for your patience and time taken to lay this out carefully and simply. It is so kind of you indeed.
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