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Sporadic hypothyroid?

Hi everyone!
I need to pick some "expert" brains here...Is it possible for the thyroid to fluctuate rapidly (sometimes hypo for 1-6 weeks, then normal, then maybe a bit hyper, then hypo again) if it's deteriorating to a hypo state? 2 years ago I finished a chemo-type treatment with interferon and a viral suppressant for my liver (all good there so far!) but the interferon ticked off my thyroid, causing hyperthyroid issues and a thyroid storm (I LOVE beta blockers!). After 8 weeks, it "flipped" to hypo, and then leveled out to normal levels after about 6 months. (No meds, -yay!) Last October I began having heart palpitations -not super fast (120 beats/min at most) but pounding with shortness of breath, chest tightness, and fatigue. I ran a quick EKG on myself (I'm a Paramedic) and it looked normal, so I just "toughed it out" until last Feb (thinking maybe I was perimenopausal because the periods hadn't had their usual regularity either). I finally went into the Dr, had my levels drawn, did a treadmill test, had a cardiac ultrasound (checking for heart valve issues because the palpitations were still going on) and the only thing that came back abnormal was the "T-3 uptake" (different than Free T-3?) which was high and the triiodothyronine (Free T-3?) which was low.
Labs were:
TSH         1.12      ( range 0.40-5.0)
Free T3    3.0   (range 2.3-4.2)
Free T-4   1.2  (range .40-5.0)

Three weeks later labs were:(different lab)
TSH          2.78   (range .40-5.0)
Free T-4     1.1    (range 0.7-1.5)
T-3 uptake  43.3  (range 22.5-37.0)
Triiodothyrinone (Free T-3?) 107    (range 110-200)

The palpitations calmed down for a while and everything else (period irregularity, sleep troubles, etc) seem to go back to normal as well except for the difficulty losing weight, concentration issues, dry skin, tingles, no sex drive (na-da!) and feeling low energy. Now, the palpitations seem to be coming back again, and despite having 70 degree nights, -I'm freezing! I'm so cold at night I have to turn on the heated mattress pad so I can sleep...My body temp was running between 96.5-97.8 F for a few weeks (checked it sporadically, different times of day with different thermometers) and now it is running normal again..sigh. I compared the signs and symptoms check list for hypo to premenopausal (hypo won, hands down) but I'm reluctant to get my levels checked again because the blood tests aren't showing anything really wrong and the Dr's will give me the old "blow off"...Hypo runs very strong in the women of my family, so I'm suspicious this is what's going on...Any advice? ~Melinda



4 Responses
Avatar universal
Yes, it is possible to swing back and forth and is actually fairly common in the early stages of Hashi's, which is the most prevalent cause of hypo in the developed world.  Have you ever had antibodies tested to see if you have Hashi's?  Although it's rare, some people also have both Hashi's and Graves'.

Beta blockers do the trick, don't they...love may be too strong a word, but I don't know where I'd be without them!

I'm guessing the FT4 range from the first set of labs is actually the TSH range???

Triiodothyrinone is T3, but the range on that looks like a total T3 range, not a free T3 range.  If the test just says triiodothyrinone (see why we call if T3?!) or T3, then it's total.  When it's free, "free' or "FT3 is always specified.

Are you taking any meds now?
649848 tn?1534637300
COMMUNITY LEADER
I agree with goolarra and I'd like to add that maybe it would be a good idea to a thyroid ultrasound, along with getting tested for the antibodies.  If you have nodules, it's possible for them to leak hormone independently of the thyroid.
Avatar universal
Just out of curiosity how would you know if a nodule was leaking hormone? would it be possible to tell on ultrasound?and would leaky nodules cause hyper or hypo?
Avatar universal
Hiya,
Nope, no meds at all. I've been trying to do support stuff like vitamins, (especially D) and stay away from soy which oddly seems to aggravate things. I've had some other weird history as well, like hypercalcemia from a parathyroid tumor, but ever since the tumor was removed, those levels have behaved themselves and the problem has not returned. I was tested for antibodies 3 years ago, and was negative then -but then, a lot has happened since then...I wouldn't be surprised if the treatment I went through created lasting autoimmune issues...The beta blockers saved my life when the thyroiditis blossomed into a thyroid storm. My blood pressure became quite high, my resting heart rate reached 160, and my temp got up to 102 F. I got to experience what a cardiac patient feels when they are in distress...Not fun. So, yes, I have some love for the effectiveness of Beta blockers! LOL Thanks for the advice. I'll "present" the suggestion to my Dr! :)  ~Melinda
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