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Thyroid Disorders Community
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Avatar universal

Aspirin and Thyroid Tests

Recently I had a thyroid test which returned a TSH level of .01  I am going in for a second test to verify this result.  I just read that taking aspirin can lower TSH numbers.  Because I have cluster headaches I had taken a strong dose, 825 mg, of aspirin two days in a row in the few days preceding my thyroid test.  Having just taken the aspirin again yesterday, how many days should I wait before it will not affect my TSH numbers on the test?  How much can aspirin affect the TSH numbers in the thyroid test? I also use oxygen for my stronger cluster headaches so I have decided to cease altogether taking the strong aspirin in the future and will stick with the oxygen only.
11 Responses
Avatar universal
Aspirin is acetylsalicylic acid which breaks down rapidly to Salicylic acid.  From what I read, Salicylic acid has a half life of approximately 6 h, but may exceed 20 h in higher doses.  So to be sure of no effect of the high dose on TSH levels, I would wait for 4 or 5 days before testing again.  Also, since TSH is a pituitary hormone which is affected by so many things, I would also request to be tested for Free T4 and free T3, which are the biologically active thyroid hormones,  TSH alone is not enough to adequately evaluate your status.  When you get those test results if you will post them here, along with reference ranges shown on the lab report, and any symptoms you have, members will be glad to help interpret and advise further.  

Have you ever tried taking magnesium for your headaches?
Avatar universal
I didn't know aspirin affects the TSH level. I have never been told or asked about what I had taken prior to any TSH testing.
649848 tn?1534633700
COMMUNITY LEADER
Some studies say TSH is lowered by aspirin (or other NSAIDs) and other studies say there's no change...

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14671157
http://press.endocrine.org/doi/full/10.1210/jc.2002-021869

It's known that TSH tends to be higher in the morning and decreases as the day goes on.
649848 tn?1534633700
COMMUNITY LEADER
Forgot to ask if you are currently taking thyroid hormone med...
Avatar universal
I never tried magnesium for the cluster headaches.  The oxygen works fine and is coverd by my insurance.  I just used the 825 mg of aspirin for the less intense headaches as it was convenient, but will just stick to the oxygen from now on.

My doctor probably has ordered the other tests for my second bloodwork.  She is very throrough.  However, itt will be interesting to see if there is any change is the TSH levels without any aspirin influence. I will post again after I get my second reaults in the next couple of weeks.
Avatar universal
Well, I don't know how much effect it has but you can find studies online that indicate aspririn lowers the TSH and other levels, though they don't say by how much.  My concern is that I took two very strong doses, 825 mg, shortly before my thryroid test, and now I've read aspirin can have some effect on that test.  A baby aspirin is 81 mg and a regular aspirin is 325 mg.
Avatar universal
No, I am not taking any thyroid medicines.  We just decided to test the thyroid because thyroid issues run in my family.  My last test, in 2012, was normal.  Now we are doing a second test to make sure the first test wasn't a mistake.  
Avatar universal
Please don't just assume that the doctor will do the recommended tests.  They were not done last time, so make sure this time by requesting both Free T4 and Free T3 (not the same as Total T4 and Total T3), in addition to the TSH.  
Avatar universal
I have gotten back the results from my second test. They were just posted so I haven't spoken to my doctor yet. This time my TSH is .02; thyroxine is 9.19; T3 uptake is 1.08; free thyroxine index is 9.93.  Two weeks ago my TSH was .01.  It seems that the only thing out of range is the tsh.
Avatar universal
Your doctor may be very thorough but he is running the wrong tests for thyroid.  Total T4, T3 uptake and Free Thyroxine Index are outdated and not very useful.  Why weren't the Free T4 and Free T3 tests done?  
Avatar universal
This doctor is just my primary care doctor.  Now that a second test has confirmed that my TSH is very low, perhaps she will refer me to a specialist.  The results were automatically posted and I am waiting to hear back from her within the next few days. I will keep your comments in mind.  Thank you.
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