Confused by my hyperactive thyroid

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Hi,

This is my first post, so please excuse the length. In April 2006 I ended up going to A&E following bouts of atrial fibrillation that were becoming more frequent and longer and my resting pulse rate had gone up from its normal 52 to 67. A blood test at the hospital showed my T4 reading was 48.7 (I don't remember the TSH or T3 readings). My follow up appointment 6 weeks later in Endo showed that my T4, TSH and T3 were all within normal range and the epsiode was diagnosed as Thyrotoxicosis.

About 6 weeks ago my resting heart rate went up again from 51 to 65 but I didn't think anything of it. I've also lost about 6kg in weight over the last 5 weeks and the bouts of atrial fibrillation were becoming more frequent and lasting longer. A trip to A&E whilst having the atrial fibrillation showed that my T4 was 64.9 and TSH 0.05 (I don't have the T3 reading). My GP started me on 7.5mg/day bisiprolol and 40mg/day of carbimazole last week and this upped to 60mg/day by and Endo consultant I saw on Tuesday. He's asked me to stay on 60mg/day for the next four weeks and have a blood test in 3. Aside from the AF, the other main symptoms I have are night sweats, tremor and hoarse voice for the last 3 weeks. I had an ultrasound scan on my thryoid yesterday evening - the dr doing the scan said it looked normal and there were nodules, lumps or increased blood flow to it. So the questions I have are: how long does carbimazole take to settle the symptoms as I'm still getting bouts of AF (the beta blockers done't seem to be doing anything to prevent it) and could this be Graves (which the consultant suspects and is doing further blood tests for)?

Thanks,

GT

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  • Posted

    What other symptoms do you have. It could be thyroiditis or Graves but only the blood tests will show that. Are they going to do an uptake scan? Thyroid can act up for many reasons such as the amount of iodine in your diet. Betedine mouthwash is iodine based so are a few medications. Have you recently had any viruses been on steroids or antibiotics. Pregnancy and childbirth can cause it. Your resting bpm sounds low. When I first got sick mine was jumping from 90 to 150 bpm. Even after 3 years on PTU and propranolol it rarely gets down to 70 bpm. Is your doctors running a catachloromine test to make sure it's not an adrenal issue. 
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    • Posted

      Hi - I've not heard of the catachloromine test but will discuss it with the Endo consultant at the next appointment. I've been on 2.5mg Bisiprolol since 2011 and exercise quite a bit so have a low resting heart rate. I was eating quite a lot of fish (four times a week)  in May/June which I guess has quite a lot of iodine in?
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  • Posted

    It sounds like an overractive thyroid.  My endocrinologist said that about a third of people who have this problem will get a recurrence at some point in the future which could be straight away after another episode or after a break of months to years.  Carbimazole takes about four weeks to kick in properly.  My doctor put be on bisoprosol as well but I found that it didn't really help.  When I went back he changed it to propranalol which is slow release and helped much more with the racing heart and the shakes which I had quite badly.  Since then I've had blood tests every couple of months and my endo has gradually reduced my dose of Carbimazole to 5mg.  I came off the beta blockers after about two months on the Carbimazole.  It's a long road to recovery - I'm just coming up to a year after diagnosis and I still have my off days but there's a load of great information on this site and it really helps.  You have to follow the recommendations of your doctors but also find out what works for you and listen to your own body - sounds trite and hippy I know but you're the only one who knows what 'normal' feels like!

     

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    • Posted

      Hi - I've been on carbimazole for a week and have noticed some slight improvement (no more thumping headaches in the morning and the tremors in my legs feel less although my hands are another matter) - roll on another three weeks! The pounding heart is the most distressing form me as it usually leads to skipped beats and then into AF - I'll try and get to my GP early next week to see if I can switch to Propanolol. The Endo consultant did say I was looking at 12-18 months of treatment.
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    • Posted

      Yes I was told the same - 12-18 months on carbimazole.  I started on 40mg but am now down to 5mg so there is light at the end of the tunnel - it's just a really long, frustrating tunnel!  My resting heart rate when I was diagnosed was 110 bpm and it took a good few weeks for that to come down but it does get better.  I'm hoping to get off the carbimazole in the next couple of months and then it sounds like a bit of a lottery to see whether the symptoms come back or I stay in remission. 
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    • Posted

      Hi Karen 

      Do you have a Graves or hyperthyroid ?

      What were your labs if you remember before treatment ??? 

      Kind thanks 

      Audrey

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    • Posted

      Hi Audrey

      I have Graves Disease although, looking back on my notes I can see that I have been diagnosed throughout the process with Thyrotoxicosis, Hyperthyroid and Graves but the later notes all say Graves so I'm assuming that's the overriding diagnosis.  Before treatment my T3  was 28.9, T4 was 65.3 and TSH was <0.03.  My latest results (June) were T3 was 4, T4 was 12.7 and TSH was 0.8 which my endo said were all normal.

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  • Posted

    Even more confused now - I received a copy of the letter the consultant I saw last Tuesday (15th) has written to my GP. It was dated the same day I saw him - he's put in the letter 'he (me) has a slightly nodular goitre with a rather dominant single nodule', The dr who did the ultrasound last Thursday (17th) said after the scan that everything looked normal.

    I assume that the ultrasound scan is superior to a physical examination for diagnosis, and if the consultant felt there was goitre with nodule that he was either able to see or feel during the physical, it would have been visible during the ultrasound? 

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