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thyroid probably underactive but GP won't do anything...options?

(22 Posts)
vegetariandumpling Sat 10-Nov-12 14:36:34

Hi all,

I've posted about my huge list of symptoms before and followed your wise advise to go to the GP.

Basically, the biggest problem is the tiredness, but also have the other problems of feeling depressed, weight gain dry skin etc. As my aunt has an underactive thyroid i thought it was likely to be this, and the GP agreed. But, when we got the blood test results back TSH was 4.33, with the normal range being from 0-4.9. GP said that it wasn't high enough for it to be causing me any problems hmm so it must be something else. I did ask if he could perscribe me thyroxine anyway to see if it helped but he wouldn't. He said I should go back for another blood test in 3-4 months to see if it's got worse.

So...what can I do now? How can I find a doctor (private or not) who might perscribe me something? or alternatively, how can I make it worse so that my GP will treat me? Even if I wait 3 or 4 months I might just get the same result.

AThingInYourLife Sat 10-Nov-12 14:40:53

Fucking GPs can be a pita with this.

They think fat lazy women come in looking for thyroxine so they don't have to diet.

Is your GP any good?

If not, see another.

Ask for a referral to an endo.

You could well be symptomatic at 4.33. I would be.

vegetariandumpling Sat 10-Nov-12 14:49:38

Thanks for understanding, yes GP's really are useless when it comes to this from what I've heard! He won't refer me to an endo (of course). I could see another GP but not really sure if he would actualyl be any better. In an ideal world I'd really just like to pay money to see someone that knows that 4.33 is too high! although of course I would need a GP referal for that (sigh).

topsi Sat 10-Nov-12 15:07:49

You could try a supplement called thyrogold that contains thyroid hormones and self medicate with that and use Blue Horizons home blood tests to monitor you blood results?

topsi Sat 10-Nov-12 15:08:31

Many private Doctors may see you with out a GP referal.

AThingInYourLife Sat 10-Nov-12 16:27:07

If you can see someone privately, I would do that.

I'm symptomatic at 2.8. I would be practically comatose at 4.33.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 10-Nov-12 16:32:43

Unfortunately many GPS mess around in ignorance when it comes to thryoid problems. I would see another GP as a matter of course. If this GP practice is no good, change GP practice.

www.thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/index.html is a good website.

Oblomov Sat 10-Nov-12 16:51:13

I have been given a urine test and a blood test to do for my Gp. Best I get on with it!!

digerd Sat 10-Nov-12 18:43:27

I was 5.2, after coming off Thyroxine for 3 months to see if I was now OK. I had no symptoms though, and was put back on just 50mcg, my dosage I have been on since 1996

mumtoaandj Sat 10-Nov-12 20:32:52

MY tsh is only 2.8 but i am struggling am so cold and tired, i gained 1 stone in 10 days, my hair is falling out and i had a miscarriage in september- all i am sure due to my thyroid.i feel dizzy and my blood pressure is fluctuating between very low and slightly high. but 2.8 is normal. i do not feel normal. i am scared to try over the counter thyroid stuff incase it makes it worse. any recommendations.

mercibucket Sat 10-Nov-12 22:35:30

Vegetariandumpling, did they also test for antibodies and t4? If you have antibodies, this could help build a case. Otherwise, you could go private. Ask on thyroiduk for a list of consultants/GPs in your area. It is imo better to get your gP onboard as then you get free prescriptions etc but if they won't then private it is.
Also, don't forget to check b12 (over 500 not 'normal') and vit d (well over 90) and ferritin (not lingering in low double figures) as these could be making you feel ill too

Mumtoaandj, sorry to hear you feel ill too. Also check all vitamins, but if you are ttc, you might be able to persuade the GP on the grounds that tsh is recommended to be under 2 for conception. A good consultant would also recommend this I think

ThatBintAgain Sat 10-Nov-12 22:42:20

Hello-just jumping in as am waiting for blood results on Tuesday to find out if I have an underactive thyroid. Or anaemia.

I hope you get somewhere with a different Dr.

NanTheWiser Sun 11-Nov-12 12:36:41

I'm another with all the clinical symptoms of hypoT - have felt really ill for a year. Got my blood tests back last week, TSH 1.91 (0.35 - 5.00) and FT4 13.8 (9.0 - 22.0) which on the face of it don't look too bad, but I feel could be a lot better. On treatment, you would be expected to have TSH at 1 or below, and FT4 around 20ish, so why won't the GPs treat? Mine was adament that he wouldn't prescribe on those numbers.

Before the advent of the blood test, you were treated purely on clinical symptoms.

My vit D3 looks a bit low at 80 nmol/L (optimal range 70-200) so I'm supplementing that, and asked for the TPO antibodies test - he warned me the lab might refuse to test as within range, but hope to pick up results tomorrow. I'm pinning hopes on antibodies showing!

My Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin was high - just above the range at 32.2pg (27.5 - 32) which could also point to thyroid problems or pernicious anaemia - vit B12 was 623pg/ml (190-910) but wondering whether my gut is absorbing it? (Have gut problems too!)

What did you mean mercibucket about "over 500 not normal"?

I'm beginning to think going private is the only way to get anywhere, (very reluctantly!) What a scandalous situation!

Has anyone else done this?

AThingInYourLife Sun 11-Nov-12 12:45:36

"On treatment, you would be expected to have TSH at 1 or below, and FT4 around 20ish"

Not IME

Even when I was pregnant the target was TSH <2

Mine has never been lower than 1.1.

I've never heard of anyone been treated with numbers like yours.

mercibucket Sun 11-Nov-12 14:43:22

Sorry, comma was missed, I meant your b12 should be at least 500, not 'it's normal' when it's actually 200 and not normal at all.
Nan, tbh you will be lucky to get anyone to treat thyroid with those numbers, unless you try one of the private specialists who are known to do so. What makes you think it's thyroid, not something else? I'd keep pushing for more tests of other things to make sure something isn't being missed.
Tsh definitely needs to be under 1 or even suppressed for some people on treatment, but not everyone. I need it suppressed I think, but feel much better on t3 as well as t4 so perhaps I had a conversion problem

mercibucket Sun 11-Nov-12 14:43:22

Sorry, comma was missed, I meant your b12 should be at least 500, not 'it's normal' when it's actually 200 and not normal at all.
Nan, tbh you will be lucky to get anyone to treat thyroid with those numbers, unless you try one of the private specialists who are known to do so. What makes you think it's thyroid, not something else? I'd keep pushing for more tests of other things to make sure something isn't being missed.
Tsh definitely needs to be under 1 or even suppressed for some people on treatment, but not everyone. I need it suppressed I think, but feel much better on t3 as well as t4 so perhaps I had a conversion problem

frazzled09 Sun 11-Nov-12 14:56:30

I had the symptoms too, but blood tests showed normal thyroxin levels. So I followed some advice to try B vitamins, magnesium and iron supplements and I feel much better. Not perfect, but much less tired and more cheery and energetic. My skin is less cracked too.

I know you have investigated your vitamin levels though, so in your place I would ask for a second opinion.

NanTheWiser Sun 11-Nov-12 16:59:34

merci, after an exceptionally stressful time last year (after my husband died) I started to feel quite ill, mostly cardiac related - GP insisted it was anxiety, which I doubted, and I did an exercise test in June which ruled out any heart problems.

I suspected it could be adrenal insufficiency, but all my symptoms point to hypoT, my mother was hypo too.

I can tick most of the symptoms on the Thyroid UK checklist - eyebrow and body hair loss, low basal temp, low BP, brain fog, enlarged tongue etc.

With my blood results, which are within the normal range, it's very unlikely I'll get anywhere, but as it's possible to have normal results with antibodies, I'm waiting to see what the TPO test will reveal.

cocolepew Sun 11-Nov-12 17:07:45

Adrenal Fatigue has very similar symptons to an underactive thyroid. It's not always recognised by Drs, but is worth a google. The advice to try Bvits and minerals is a good idea.

mercibucket Sun 11-Nov-12 17:37:14

I'm really sorry to hear about your husband passing away, nanthewiser. Grief can cause very real physical symptoms, and as you say, could be adrenal related as well as thyroid. I hope you find an answer in the antibodies test

mercibucket Sun 11-Nov-12 17:37:14

I'm really sorry to hear about your husband passing away, nanthewiser. Grief can cause very real physical symptoms, and as you say, could be adrenal related as well as thyroid. I hope you find an answer in the antibodies test

digerd Sun 11-Nov-12 18:34:01

TSH normal range of 0.35 - 5.00, seems a large range. How do they know what is right for the individual patient?

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