Over active Thyroid?

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So for years now I have suffered from fatigue, low energy began having terrible anxiety, was told I have depression and put on antidepressant. As the years went on this has continued and I have the same symptoms all the time, tired, no energy, sore neck and glands, tremors, hot flushes, pale endemic looking skin, the feeling of a lump in my throat...the list goes on, each time I would go to the doctor have some tests they would come back clear and he would put it down to my anxiety when I know very well it's something more..recently I had a blood result showing a slightly elevated level of calcium...I have done research and to me this and all my other ongoing symptoms lead to having an overactive thyroid?? Wouldn't you agree?? How do I get my doctor to listen and do further tests as I know he's going to put it down to anxiety again as all my other tests show normal?.. Anyone had a similar thing?. Help it's sooo frustrating

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  • Posted

    Thyroid disease is usually diagnosed on the basis of blood tests as well as physical examination. For thyroid hyperactivity, the TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone test) usually yields low results (i.e. mine was less than 0.01 when the normal range is something like 0.40 to 3.0). T3 and T4 are other thyroid hormones that are measured and in hyperthyroidism they are abnormal, i.e. results are elevated. For Graves disease there are also blood tests to measure antibodies as certain diseases like Graves and Hashimotos are caused by the immune system attacking the thyroid. For hypothyroidism, the same tests are used. There is evidence of people having low thyroid activity yet normal TSH levels and that is something that thyroid advocates are fighting to get doctors to understand. I have never heard of cases of thyroid hyperactivity that is misdiagnosed, only hypoactivity that is misdiagnosed.

    You don't state your age but if you are menopausal, the drop in hormones can cause a lot of symptoms. As well, clinical depression can cause a person to feel extremely lethargic and tired.

    Stress can trigger autoimmune thyroid disease. If you want to rule out thyroid disease you need to request that your doctor do specific tests to rule it out.

    As a start, a family doctor can do a full physical and blood tests to check basic functioning of Hematological, liver, kidney, thyroid and heart diseases to get a baseline for your health functioning.

    You could also see a Naturopath as they have a more holistic view of the body and would order different tests as well.

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  • Posted

    I would like to add just a little to what Linda said,

    First, when I was first treated for Graves' Disease (GD), my fatigue, low energy, anxiety, and other symptoms got worse, not better. I also had a lump feeling in my neck or throat, many years prior to that, but I don't think it changed after I was diagnosed.

    I do believe that the thyroid should be considered as a potential cause of depression before issuing anti-depressants, in fact, when the doctor wanted to start my husband on them I insisted his thyroid be checked first and he was found to be hypothyroid. Yes, low functioning thyroid is the one most often associated with depression. (My husband really had heart failure, which wasn't diagnosed for 6 months because nothing showed up on the EKG (or ECG). Not until he was very near death and the 3rd time to the ER was he hospitalized and referred to a cardiologist.) Do I divert? Sorry.

    The high calcium levels are not usually associated with being hyperthyroid, but with the parathyroid glands. Also, if you have been so fatigued for a long time, and have not maintained a certain level of exercise, your calcium levels can rise. That is by no means all. I just got that little bit from reading about it on the Mayo Clinic site. Of course your own doctor is the one you should ask about this. Just keep in mind that these symptoms might not all directly relate to the same thing, even if there is an overall root cause.

    If your doctor has tested the thyroid, or really any blood tests at all, you should ask for a copy of the results, and post them here, where we may be able to help you understand them.

    Know also that there are a myriad of conditions that can cause the basic symptoms you experience. It seemed to me that I had the classic hypothyroid symptoms for years, but the TSH tests were always "normal". After the GD diagnosis, and after years going to endocrinologists, one finally told me I have antibodies of both types -- the ones that stimulate the thyroid as in GD, and the ones that destroy it as in HT (Hashimoto's Thyroiditis). That could be a reason for seeming "normal" with the TSH test.

    Another reason for low functioning thyroid is "Central Hypothyroidism" (CT) usually caused by a pituitary adenoma, but that is so very rare that only the most savvy endocrinologist might even suspect it. Usually you need the Free T4 tested along with the TSH and if both are below the normal range CT may be the reason.

    There have also been studies which show that treatment with Acetyl-L-carnitine has positive results in cases of Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and other conditions. Again, check with your doctor.

    It helps to be knowledgeable enough to talk to the doctor intelligently, but you have to be careful not to include "knowledge" that may be deemed quackery by the same doctor, unless you are going to a Naturopath, anyway. I usually go for articles published by reputable clinics, or even better, the NIH or NCBI. (The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) is part of the United States National Library of Medicine (NLM), a branch of the National Institutes of Health.)

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  • Posted

    Hi Fern, can I just ask you a question as you seem fairly clued up on thyroid antibodies. I was told by my GP that I had GD and the antibodies would eventually destroy my thyroid. I have subsequently learned from this site that that is incorrect. I note though, from your response to Rachel that it is actually HT antibodies that destroy the thyroid. How can you find out from your blood tests which type of antibodies you have please?
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  • Posted

    You can find out what antibodies you have by asking your doctor for a copy of your blood work done.

    As far as what your GP told you about GD antibodies, I no longer have antibodies of Graves Disease and I had them at diagnosis.

    Since I have taken the Acetyl-L-Carnitine and all my Thyroid blood indices are in the normal range, my antibodies have disappeared. Don't know if anyone else that posts here has had a similar experience.

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  • Posted

    Thanks for all that, went back to doctor yesterday and he has listened and today I had bloods for THS? T4 , T3 and PTH and also repeated my calcium test. He is also sending me on to see a thyroid specialist for " my piece of mind" as he clearly stated he doesn't think the results will show anything and is still putting it all down to anxiety. So we will see, will be great to have a second opinion though though.
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  • Posted

    When my Endo #3 told me she suspected I had both GD and HT antibodies she knew the results of my latest TSI test already (Thyroid Stimulating Immunologlobins of GD) but said she would test for the HT antibodies and actually tested for Anti TPO ab and Thyroglobulin ab (or Tg antibodies). Now my Endo #4 says the Tg antibodies don't really matter, and they were not significantly present in my test. This new Endo also tested for TRAb instead of TSI which the others tested for. I don't know why, really, just that it stands for Thyrotropin (TSH) receptor antibodies.
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  • Posted

    Rachel, I have never had a PTH test, apparently it is testing the parathyroid hormone because of the calcium question. Get copies of the results for your TSH, T4 (free?) and T3 (free or total) and post them with the ranges (the normal range can be different for the particular lab that did your test.)
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  • Posted

    Still awaiting results..very frustrating and causing a lot of anxiety, doctor didnt seem worried at all about my raised calcium level as he said it was only 2.6 and the normal range is up to 2.5 so only 1% elevated, I tend to expwct the worse so hopefully this is nothing to worry about. Might I add I have suffered symptoms for 9 years and never before has my calcium level been high. Hope some one can can give me some reassuring information. smile
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  • Posted

    Hiya I feel your pain.. out of interest what is your blood type im ab negative im totally with you on getting passed off with depression I did I depression test on paper which lead to anxiety.. but I feel I have something else going on

    Ranges for nhs are 0.2-5 I came back at 0.38 (2 year ago) i feel this is low and with all the symptoms i should be taken seriously when i bring up thyroid vut im just given an explanation of why its not, doctor wont retest and every time I go back struggling with a symptom ive been handed anxiety leaflets and told to book counselling.

    I took myself off anti depressants as I feel I was much worse

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    • Posted

      Ive just realised this was a year ago.. any light shed on your condition... :-)

      Hopefully you are closer to what you want

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