Thanks for all your posts.
I've just had a test which showed t4 12.9 t3 3.8 and TSH 14.9
Doctor said 14.9 was 'off the scale' but in rummaging around google I've seen people with TSH levels of 80 and even 300! How high is mine really? Obviously too high and I need throxine which I started taking yesterday, but how worried should I be?
Also, I've gained about 5kg (10lbs - I'm Australian). How quickly can I expect to lose this weight and feel less tired being on this drug?
I have very low levels of Hep C, almost unreadable now. I have been having pains in my lower shin and irregular menstrual cycles. I thought I was going through menopause, being 54. I had hot flushes last Christmas for the first time but none since. Periods irregular last year but more regular this year but much much heavier than ever before. Heard this was normal for menopause. Now I hear irregular menses is a symptom of hypthyroidism. Am I in menopause or not? Have had severe abdominal pain about four times this year. Thought I was constipated but wasn't. Wondered if it was to do with my menstrual cycle. Maybe hypothyroidism?
I don't have a printout of my results but another has been ordered and will get a copy when it's done. I'm taking 50ug of eutroxsig (thyroxine sodium tablets).
I didn't see the list of symptoms on your post so could answer how many symptoms I have. But I would say my symptoms are:
- one particular day there was a lot of hair in the bath about six months ago but otherwise haven't noticed hair loss though hair is more limp than usual despite 'product'
- I don't feel depressed or tired but was surprised by how tired I was after a bike ride recently that normally would not have tired me
- I've had pain in my upper shin that is unexplained
- I've put on 3-5kg but my clothes still fit and this wasn't unduly worrying me until the last month or so - hence the questions about how long it will take to lose this weight now I'm on the thyroxine
- menstrual symptoms as described above
- dry skin on legs where all my life I've had oily skin
- memory isn't so good sometimes
Generally speaking, none of my physical symptoms, apart from the shin pain, had been particularly affecting my sense of quality of life. I have severe arthritis in my knee from an ancient motor bike accident and I thought the shin and hip pain was due to that.
At 14.9, your TSH is high, but I wouldn't classify it as "off the scale". My initial TSH was 55.54....
More important are the T3 and T4 levels. As gimel noted, we'd need to see the reference ranges for those to see where your levels fall within them. We also need to know if they are FREE T3 and FREE T4, or if the tests are for TOTAL T3 and TOTAL T4, which are considered obsolete and of limited value.
Additionally, your symptoms are certainly pointing toward hypothyroidism and you're lucky they haven't unduly affected your quality of life, yet.
Because thyroid and reproductive hormones are both part of the endocrine system, all hormones need to work together in order for you to feel well. So yes, your menstrual issues could be thyroid related; on the other hand, they could be related to menopause. You might want to have your doctor test your reproductive hormone levels to find out.
It takes at least 4-6 weeks for the medication to reach full potential in the body and it's advised to retest Free T3, Free T4 and TSH at that point to see what your levels and symptoms are, to determine if you need an adjustment in medication.
Some people are able to lose weight relatively quickly, once placed on medication; others of us have to work at it, so no one can really say how fast you might lose the weight.
It's not the medication that causes weight gain or hair loss... it's the hypothyroidism that the medication treats, so hopefully, you'll be on a high enough dosage that will prevent those symptoms.
As I noted in my post, above, from almost 4 yrs ago, some people are lucky and lose any weight they might have gained, almost as soon as they get on med, while others of us have to work hard at it. I'm one who has had to work hard at it, but I've had things, other than hypothyroidism going on, as well.
Best of luck... if you'd like to start your own thread, listing your current labs, with reference ranges (ranges vary lab to lab and have to come from your own reports), symptoms and other particulars, we'll be happy to help you along your journey to wellness... Some of us have been around for a long time and "been there, done that"...
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