158939 tn?1274915197

prednisone and TSH levels

Silly question for you lab and drug interaction experts out there.  

I know that long-term use of prednisone can block thyroid absorption but would a 6-day course of prednisone (METHYLPREDNISOLONE 4MG DOSPAK 21)  block absorption enough to bump a TSH from 0.11 to 22.06 even while taking the required thyroid supplements????

The last time I *had* to get my TSH this high (for RAI) it took me 4 weeks and the low iodine diet to get my TSH this high (and I still had remaining thyroid tissue).

BTW - my Free T3 1.8 (down from 3.9 three months ago) and my Free T4 .53 (down from .88).  Waiting for the Tg (will take a few days)

Is there ANY possible way the prednisone made such a huge jump in the TSH???  Nothing else has changed.


(the cancerous one)

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Avatar universal
I am suffering terribly from a prednisone taper - thyroid ultrasound tomorrow :(
Helpful - 0
158939 tn?1274915197

labs on 10/21/09
Free T3 1.8
Free T4 0.53
TSH  22.06
Thyroglobulin .7

labs on 7/22/09
Free T3  3.9
Free T4  .88
TSH  .11
Thyroglobulin .1

My endo (who is also a PhD in biochemistry) said that the prednisone would have skewed the labs slightly but would have skewed them down (meaning that my TSH is actually higher).  He said my problem is an absorption problem probably caused by all of my GI surgeries and GI bleeds.  

I was also switched from Armour to a compounded natural thyroid a month ago because of the worldwide Armour shortage and we aren't sure the compound is working so I'm back on Synthroid with Cytomel.

We'll see if it helps with the hives, and immune problems I've been experiencing lately.  I actually had no idea I am hypo - I've been heat-intolerant, losing weight, shaky, and having chest pains - I just figured the exhaustion was from all of the post-surgery trauma and blood loss.

Fun never ends.

Thanks everyone for the help!

Big Hugs!

Helpful - 0
549681 tn?1229724499
I know that I read somewhere that prednisone blocks conversion to T3.  Looks like you have the labs to prove that theory.
Helpful - 0
393685 tn?1425812522
Oh yes... my western buddy........ steriods of any kind are nightmares for thyroid meds.....

LOOK WHAT IT DID TO YOUR FREES too???? OMGosh.... what are you feeling like? Yuck??

and to top it off.... it hangs in the system for almost forever - sometimes 3 to 6 months...
Helpful - 0
158939 tn?1274915197
I can understand a few points but nearly a **22 point** swing in a TSH?!?!?
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
YES... Prednisone does affect your levels, Including short dosages.. My doctor refused to do my thyroid labs while i was on a 7 day DOSPAK, he said it would throw the numbers off. I don't remember how long either i had to wait, I think it was at least 2 - 3 weeks after discontinuing the Prednisone.
Helpful - 0
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