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Talk to me about thyroid problems.

(9 Posts)
DrCoconut Fri 08-Jan-16 12:14:37

My 17 yo DS has been suffering from health problems for a while and the Dr instead of giving laxatives, suggesting we see about his ADD medication etc ran blood tests. His TSH is 5.8. They say it doesn't need any action yet and they will review in 6 months. This was passed on by admin staff, we didn't see a Dr for results. He has high functioning autism and ADD so it's hard to see the wood for the trees as it were with things like lethargy, poor cognitive function and digestive issues. No one has even suggested a thyroid issue until now. Anyone got any experience of this sort of thing?

Clarella Fri 08-Jan-16 14:54:12

What is his medication?

The nice guidelines state that treatment is started tsh over 10, however it's a very grey area. That tsh is out of 'normal' range. (This range is controversial).

I think that if there are symptoms (eg constipation is one) treatment can be started.

Personally it sounds like he does need treatment. Does your son have any other medical people involved with him eg consultants etc? It might be worth getting a second opinion, though as I say GP is following the current guidelines. Especially due to his other conditions and his age.

Ideally his antibodies should be tested - I really don't know why they don't do this.

The British thyroid foundation have helplines you can ring to see if they could point you in any other directions.

Clarella Fri 08-Jan-16 14:58:08

But you are right it causes cognitive issues and digestive issues.

I actually teach children in the spectrum. When I was once ill with a high tsh and really struggling it occurred to me I was experiencing similar issues to my class - executive function is impaired, memory, brain fog etc. So yes there are crossovers but it's well documented that thyroid issues cause cognitive issues.

They monitor it to see if it corrects it's self or to see if it worsens and tsh gets worse, then they treat. It does take time. If it were me I'd be tempted to push quite a bit.

Clarella Fri 08-Jan-16 15:00:37

There is also thyroid uk, and they have a group on health unlocked.

I mention the btf as they are the official charity linked to the British thyroid association (the uk group of consultants in this area) and therefore might be more useful in this situation.

DrCoconut Sat 09-Jan-16 14:18:53

He is on equasym for his ADD, but I'm now wondering if part of the problem is thyroid related rather than ADD. He is very away with the fairies, disorganised, can't think straight etc.

Clarella Sat 09-Jan-16 14:46:50

It will be hard to ascribe what symptoms are caused by what, but I am not all there when my tsh is that bad. However, gps will say they get patients with tsh much much higher.

I was having significant word finding difficulties when my tsh was around 13 but taking thyroxine (not enough). I struggle at over 2-3, though with no functioning thyroid tsh must be kept low. However I do think that score is significant as the upper range currently is around 4 or 4.5.

I think you should make an appointment to discuss this with your GP and discuss his symptoms, after reading / armed with the nice guidelines.

Clarella Sat 09-Jan-16 14:49:57

This is subclinical hypothyroidism. - Google nice guidelines subclinical hypothyroidism.!scenario:1

Note it could be 3-6 months retest and offer of trial with symptoms present.

VocationalGoat Sat 09-Jan-16 14:51:22

Did you also have a free T3 and free T4 test done in addition to the TSH? Because TSH on it's own is really coloured by the results of a full thyroid panel. TSH on it's own does not reveal enough. I would book a phone consultation with your DC's GP. Discuss the current results and request a full thyroid panel.

Clarella Sat 09-Jan-16 16:29:41

It would have to be firmly requested; many a GP has apologised to me as the labs often don't follow through.

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