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Thyroid Disorders Community
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929504 tn?1332589534

REQUESTING OF FREE T3 TESTING

Due to controversy from quite a few posters on this site, i have decided to contact my endo and request free t3 testing on my next labs (april). To make a long story short. TT on 12/17/09, 1st set of labs in jan resulted in
TSH- 3rd generation @ 39.51 (0.40-4.50)
Free t4 @0.3 (0.8-1.8)
Total T4 @ 2.5 (4.5-12.5)
T3 uptake @ 25 (22-35)
Free t4 Calc @ 0.6 (1.4-3.8)

Feb labs resulted in:
TSH- 3rd generation @13.76 (0.40-4.50)
Free T4 @ 0.9  (0.8-1.8)
Total T4 @ 7.2 (4.5-12.5)
T3 uptake @ 27 (22-35)
Free T4 Calc 1.9 (1.4-3.8)
Thyroglobulin AB @ <20 (,20)

In both labs, there were no Free T3 testing requested.I called my endo based on opinons of posters on this site,and she returned the call today ' and i explained to her that ive spoken to people in the same situation as myself and i also read materials stating that the Free T3 testing is important when testing to determine how a patient is feeling as far as symptoms of hypothyroidism along with the TSH and Free T4... she says: due to the fact that i am still in transition in getting my levels normal' because i had surgery only 2 mos ago, that testing for Free T3 is not necessary unless further down the road, my levels are normal and i am having major hypo symptoms "still", is when that test is necessary. She says that she is satisfied that my levels are on its way to normal but wants my TSH and my Free T4 to improve.

To me, this make sense as i retake labs in april and pray that they are closer to normal.

Any Opinons????
48 Responses
1211076 tn?1303523040
I'll be interested to see the replies that you get because I've had 2 different doctors tell me the same exact thing and we had our TT on the same day.
Avatar universal
Okay, I've finished screaming now...the frustration!  I think it's easier to go into your doctors office and request a full body MRI and get it than to get a simple, cheap blood test (mine costs me $10.14 after my insurance "discount") that provides so much information.

Total T4, T3 uptake and T4 Calc (FTI) are a waste of money and good blood.  They're obsolete, and they've been replaced by FT3 and FT4.  If she doesn't think T3 is important, why is she ordering T3 uptake (FT3's precursor)?  

Your FT3 correlates best with symptoms.  If you're not converting properly, you want to know that.  It's really important to develop a history...what's your FT3 doing when your FT4 is at this level versus that level.  If your FT3 isn't at the right level for you, your FT4 can be "perfect", and you are still not going to feel well.

I'm sure you'll hear from some other screamers!
  
Avatar universal
Totally agree with goolarra.  You're the customer.  It's your money.  Insist on FT3.  Don't take no for an answer.
1211076 tn?1303523040
But no one is addressing the fact that our doctors didn't say they WOULDN"T do it..their opinion is in cases like ours it is just too soon to even know what is going on as we are just 2months without a thyroid. Now, if it wasn't in their plan at all or even within the next couple of months..that would be one thing, but obviously they do plan on testing it when we are a bit farther along. Did either of you have a TT? I am new to this and I don't know much, but I think you at least have to give the doctor a chance. If my endo said flat out NO he doesn't test that, etc..that would be one thing. I would be looking for a new Dr. I just think it would be a bit premature to ditch him now, as he said he would be testing that in the near future..just not at this stage.  
Avatar universal
But, they have said they wouldn't do it now.  No, neither gimel (sorry to speak for you here, gim) nor I have had a TT.  Sorry, froggy, I can't remember what your doctor is testing.  But, I do know that blsdnsvd's doctor is not only refusing (at the moment) to order FT3, but is ordering obsolete tests...TT4, T3 uptake, FTI.  These tests are a waste of time, money and blood.  Do I think this is indicative of the doctor's expertise in dealing with thyroid...yes, and it does not bode well.  As I said to blsdnsvd (please, something pronouncible!), if her doctor doesn't think T3 is important, why is she ordering the obsolete tests for it (T3 uptake) instead of FT3?
1211076 tn?1303523040
So what you are saying is that you feel they should run those tests this soon? Believe me, I am not doubting you, as I know that you do know your "stuff" here...but if they are inexpensive tests, etc..why are the MAJORITY of endo's and pcp's not concerned about it...at least with us at the moment? Maybe it's different when you don't have your thyroid anymore and it's only been 2 months for us and NOTHING is regulated yet? I don't know. My endo (along with the other 7 in the practice because I called and asked) said for patients who just had TT..in the beginning they test T4 Total, T3 Uptake and TSH and also VitB12/Folate Panel, Comprehensive Metabolic Panel, Calcium, Albumin, Phosphorus and VitD. If the patient is having problems or symptoms then that's when they would need further/different testing done.    
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