Thyroid levels?? Anyone with any experience(27 Posts)
I've read on a few threads about how thyroid levels can affect fertility and given that we're clutching at straws having suffered with unexplained infertility for 5 years I thought I'd have my thyroid level checked. Well it's come back as 2.5 which is in the normal range but I believe for TTC it ideally needs to be below this. So my next question is does anyone know of ways to lower it without medication is it something that could be weight related?
Hi @Katie, I have no answers I'm afraid but am going to lurk on this thread in case someone does! I suspect hypothyroidism myself but my tsh levels are 2.1 so am getting T4 measured too. Have you had your T3 and T4 measured? They could be the issue instead of TSH...
My TSH was 2.1 at my last test but was 5.4 a while back and dropped with no treatment, no idea how!
It took 11 months but I got my BFP a couple of days ago, not sure if my slightly wonky thyroid was the reason it took so long (FSH, Estrogen & LH were all normal, as was my husband's SA and my scans)
Hi katie, am very definitely not an expert but have also just had my thyroid tested and my TSH is 0.02 and my clinic have told me that although the normal range starts at 0.27, they like it to be above 2 so on that basis your level of 2.5 sounds fine.
Hi @katieferg81 I have thyroid removed and was on thyroxine for abt 7 years, same 125mg pills. My levels were in the perfect range too but above 2.5 so clinc asked to lower it to under 2. So I went to GP and Started taking 150mg. So levels dropped to 0.2 which just under normal. So had to cut dosage to 137. So I think you can just speak to your Gp. I don’t know if it’s pissible to start taking something to lower it if you not on medication already. But I don’t think you can control it without pills
I have hypothyroidism and take 75mg of levothyroxine which was doubled during my pregnancy.
Pre pregnancy I found that yoga helped as there are some positions that stimulate the thyroid glad also diet. There are a lot of food which interfere with the production of the thyroxine in your body such as dairy, peanuts, broccoli, grapefruit, spinach, soya... and many all these should be avoided if possible or if you are going to eat then allow min of 2hrs between taking your meds (if you do) and consuming
I was at quite a critical state before being diagnose, my reading was 255 which is way of the chart, my GP couldn’t understand how I was still alive! Due to this I was referred to a nutritionist who supported me and within 6 weeks my readings were within range for both TH3 and TH4.
Your TSH needs to be low as possible really, as low as you can get it without having adverse symptoms.
2.5 is on the high side for IVF, my clinic would like it to be under 2 - if its over 3 at trigger, they would't do embryo transfer (they'd freeze the embryos instead with a view to getting your TSH down and then doing a FET)
I'm not sure how to lower TSH levels without medication but if you can take it, you should give it a try. Doctors are reluctant to prescribe it for TSH levels under 5 because is within the normal range for non-pregnant people, however, as you say, when you are TTC, it should ideally be under 2.5. I went to a private fertility clinic for my prescription. My TSH level started off between 2.5 and 4.85. Within 1 month of taking Synthroid, it fell below 2 and I got my BFP. Obviously I can't say for sure that it will work for you in the same way but it might be worth a try? Fingers crossed for you
Your tsh should be between 0.3-2.0 when trying to conceive and when pregnant. However, a level of 2.5 shouldn't stop you getting pregnant and is in the normal range.
A GP who doesn't have fertility experience would be very reluctant to treat this but you could ask your GP to speak to a reproductive doctor or endocrinologist and see if they would recommend treatment.
If you have a family history of thyroid problems or raised anti thyroid antibodies (blood test for this) they probably would treat.
Hope that helps.
You want to get it under 2. My OB-GYN was very clear on this when I was having issues. Here they don't mess around with letting people struggle with fertility when it's something as basic as thyroid levels. Why not medication, out of interest?
Oh and I am a thyroid medication fertility success story. 1 year TTC no success due to anovulation, 3 months on additional synthroid and I was ovulating again. Pregnant after 2 cycles.
Medication is the only way to treat thyroid problems. There's no diet or lifestyle things you can do I'm afraid. Hi have a chat to your GP and if they're dismissive ask them to speak to a specialist on your behalf x
Thanks to all those who have replied I'm going to bite the bullet tomorrow and ask GP if they'll write me a script for whatever I'll have to take to lower it, even if it's only for a few months trial. I figure it has to be worth a go and surely far cheaper than IVF.
@katieferg81 good luck... can you let us know what your GP says? Hope appointment goes okay!
Terramirabilis I aren't at all against medications I just didn't think the GP would prescribe when I'm in what they class as a normal range but I'm going to ask and see if they'll do me a trial script for a few months and see if it makes a difference.
I'll keep you posted as I do think thyroid level is something that not enough consideration is given to when undergoing fertility investigations.
I’ve been on thyroid medication for about two months or so for fertility reasons, fingers crossed for both of us! Good luck.
Hi @katieferg81 just wondering what your GP said? I had a second round of blood tests and this one was SUPPOSED to check for T4 (previous one only looked at TSH) but for some reason the people in the lab didn't include that so getting irritated and increasingly concerned by what I am reading on the internet about low bbts!
Unfortunately GP wasn't in on Fri so I've to call back next week.
Hey just thought I'd add after a bit of reading online a couple of years ago- When I was trying IVF I found a study in Oz that recommended your levels to be under 2 to start IVF as although you could get pregnant but the chances of carrying to term were small if you had an underactive Thyroid.
I had had two attempts where it was over 2 (3.5 and 2.9) and got pregnant once but it was only for a short time then I lost my bean.
I then read the Australian info, and self medicated (please don't do this!) as I was already about to start the 3rd round and knew it takes at least 4 weeks to adjust to the pills ...I panicked - as just getting an appointment for a level test and seeing a DR would have taken weeks.
I did get everything checked (was tested about 10days after i started self-medicating) and after getting those results my FC recommended I increased my intake to what I was taking already - I told my FC Dr (he rolled his eyes but understood) and my IVF went ahead.............later my first proper test as a pregnant lady came up my reading was 1.99!!! I have a 21month old now ..xx
Well finally got in touch with the GP and my latest reading is actually 1.58 and not 2.5 that's an old reading from 2016 so no need for medication and my hopes of thyroid level being the cause of my infertility and thyroxine curing me are dashed. Still it was worth exploring and I'm still on the wait list for IVF I guess I'm just going to have to be patient.
Hi @Katie I'm sorry it wasn't the outcome you wanted was it just TSH she tested you for though or T4 as well? I read that TSH alone isn't enough information and that T4 (and maybe T3) is important too as TSH can seem nornal but the conversion could be not working?
If what I just said is irrelevant then I'm really sorry. Is there nothing else you can try? I hope your wait for IVF isnt too long x
@littlemummyfoofoo thanks loads for that info - really helpful!
It took us c1 year to conceive and then I had a miscarriage. I then asked the GP for a full blood test to check that everything was ok. My results showed I had a borderline under active thyroid and I was also vitamin D deficient. The GP wasn’t overly worried, but I felt v strongly that I shouldn’t be ‘borderline’ anything so pushed them and they put me on a low dose of levothyroxine. Subsequent research reading the NICE clinical guidelines says that an under active thyroid can cause infertility/miscarriage, particularly as the fetus is unable to make their own thyroid hormones til they are 12-14 weeks so women with under active thyroids should get this treated to bring TSH within the normal range.
There was an interesting programme on Radio 4 this week about iodine deficiency too and it’s impact on women trying to conceive/who are pregnant (it’s linked to thyroid function). They recommended that we get iodine from our regular diet - it’s found in milk in the UK, also eggs and white fish so were warning about the risks of dairy free and vegan diets as women can be cutting out iodine rich foods without understanding the impact this might have on their fertility or the normal development of their unborn baby. You can listen to the programme here (or search BBC Radio 4: ‘In their Element: Awesome Iodine’) www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09plrg0
Best of luck with your journeys - I can’t say that an under active thyroid was why it took us so long to get PG and stay PG (we are fortunate to now have 2 children) but I think it could have been a contributing factor and felt it was something my GP didn’t really understand in enough detail.
Hi @Boco2 ,
You're completely right TSH should be <2 when trying to conceive and many gp's don't know this.
Iodine is actually put into our water so no one in a developed country should be iodine deficient. Not enough iodine causes lots of thyroid problems worldwide though - which is why lots of people in developing countries have huge goitres in their neck.x
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