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Elevated TSH @36 weeks - should I take the drugs?

(5 Posts)
ffauxlivia Tue 01-Mar-16 02:56:07

Hi, I appreciate this is quite specific and I may not find anyone who can help, but here goes!

To put this in context I'm currently living in the USA.

When I was about 8 weeks my OB tested my thyroid level (TSH) as part of routine prenatal bloods and it was slightly elevated. I read all sorts of things which worried me so went to see an endocrinologist. With her test my levels were okay, and she tested me every few weeks for a while and results were always under 2.5, so I didn't take any medication and stopped worrying.

She told me to get another test in my third trimester but I forgot to go until last week. At this test it was slightly elevated again (3.3 - goal is below 3 in third tri). As a result she tested my T4 and also something else (antibodies?) and both these tests were within normal range.

As it is only my TSH which is raised she said there is no clear guidance what to do in this instance. She has prescribed me meds but has said it's up to me whether I take them or not. I read that they take 2-3 weeks to get into your system, and I'm now 36+3, so is there any point? But I also read that subclinical hypothyroidism is associated with 'adverse obstetric outcome' and birth complications, possibly problems with breastfeeding too. And one website even mentioned stillbirth which really freaked me out.

But at the same time I keep thinking if I was home in the UK I wouldn't even know about this as would not have had any reason to be tested, and probably would be totally fine. I really don't want to take drugs if I don't need them, and can't seem to find a good answer online.

Does anyone have any experience or knowledge of this? What would you do?

outputgap Tue 01-Mar-16 03:51:01

I started taking thyroxine because my fertility clinic tests everyone who walks through the door. It's very common to have sub clinical hypothyroidism in your 30s apparently, esp if you've been pregnant before. Pregnancy knackers your thyroid apparently, so get it tested afterwards too.

I couldn't see one good reason not to take it in pregnancy. And for me, avoiding possible miscarriage, and whatever small chance of stillbirth seemed worth it. I also felt really bouncy the first few days, which was a bonus side effect!

I know people in other European countries who are tested for it and do take it during pregnancy. Just because the NHS might miss it isn't a good reason, I reckon.

I am currently taking it for pregnancy 3, having got and stayed pregnant with dc2 without fertility treatment once my thyroid was sorted. (Following fertility problems and 3 miscarriages, which may not have been thyroid related, I don't know.) I also had subclinical hypothyroidism.

Junosmum Tue 01-Mar-16 04:27:32

I'm on levothyroxine for underactive thyroid. I'd take it if I were you. Took a week a two to adjust to taking it but my tsh was really quite elevated and had been for a while I think. You will feel better in the long run though.

ICJump Tue 01-Mar-16 05:17:56

I took it through my last pregnacy. It's worth taking as it effects mood and energy levels. From my research the adverse issues are related to unmanaged thyriod problems.
I had a wonderful birth, and breastfeed with no dramas and DS is sleeping in my lap now.
I did get his thyriod levels checked in day 4 and 10 to rule out problems and they were all clear.

ffauxlivia Tue 01-Mar-16 13:59:44

Thank you all for replying - much appreciated! I think I will probably will take them then

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