Testing for Hypothyroidism

I have a question about hypothyroidism.
My girl freind beleives that she has hypothyroidism and the question I have is this … is it always detectable with a blood test?
If she does have that what are some things that she can do to suppliment the thyroid to assist also what harm can having that condition cause if she goes to the gym and is trying to loose weight with out treatment.

I beleive that the harmone it produces can effect much more than weight loss and operating with out sufficient amounts can cause issues in other areas. She is against taking a harmone because she fears cancer …

well I am not sure about how true or not that is but I do however feel that her body if she is suffering from hypothyroidism is operating at a disadvantage in the least and I also feel that other problems from such an untreated condition can be pretty bad. She is 40 yrs old looks 28 , works out 4 days a week eats about 2300 calories a day she works at night but has been doing that for the last 8 yrs. Really doesnt get enough sleep but when she does get the chance to sleep she can crash for like 14 hours.

She is consuming well over 100 grams of protein a day. Limited carbs but not very strict … and only after waking up or after the gym in the morning after work. Takes a multivitamin,Createin,Fish oil asl well as flax oil. Diet is mainly , Sirloin beef ,chicken breast, whole eggs, whole wheat toast,skim milk, Broccoli Cauliflower , green beans and bananas.

There is more in her diet as in variety but this is a limited amount of space but its pretty accurate.

Her work outs consist of Leggs Squat 4 sets of 10 with 90 pounds 30 sec rest between sets. Leg extension 4 sets of 10 with 50 pounds and a 1 sec squeeze at the top 15 sec rest between sets.
leg curls 10 sets of 3 with 90 pounds 5 sec rest between sets , Limited arm work presently because of her shoulder and arm. Direct AB work < machine> 60 pounds 4 sets of 10 15 sec rest between sets shrugs 15 pounds in each hand and 1 set of 25 and elliptical 1 mile usually done in 8 minutes 30 seconds.

She has made very good progress from her first work outs 10 weeks ago example 1 mile in 15 minutes but she is very upset because although her arms back and legs are getting very toned and firm she is not loosing any weight. She has progressed from only using the bar on the squats with one set of 15 and only half way down now she does an ass to the ground squat every time with a 25 plate on each side.

She does work the entire body 3 times a week but the last two days are a trainning split with the excersises. I give her a very light week once a month and that week has only two work out days. She does do arm work but at this time she has dicomfrt in her right arm and I feel its best to let it rest. Her arm work usually consist of seated rows 8 sets of 8 with 35 pounds Or close grip pull downs with 35 pounds 8 sets of 8.

I know that in this country she most likley would receive synthroid as a perscription for thyroid harmone I know its a T-4 and I have my doubts as to its effectivness but … her doctor wont justify it from her blood test results . Is it possible for the condition of hypothyroidism to exist with out being evident in a blood test?

You should research the accuracy and indications of a blood test(s) as well as adjunct diagnosis tests (if there are any). You should also consider seeing another doctor or a specialist. I don’t think anyone else can accurately diagnose this over the internet despite how specific you are with her nutrition, sleep, or workout.
Good luck,

If some Drs only tests for TSH and it is within the realm of “normal,” (below 5.5), they won’t prescribe thyroid replacement medication even if she is on the high side of the normal range. Most people have a TSH much MUCH lower than 5.5 - mine is 1.06 on medication, and some people will even say that is too high.

Have her get tested for T3 and T4 as well as TSH. My Dr didn’t think I needed any replacement therapy until he saw my T3 and T4 were out of whack with a relatively “normal” TSH.

Thyroid replacement is NOT a magic bullet - I’ve had just as hard a time losing weight after going on Armour as before - but I feel much more energetic, less depressed, etc.

Good luck. It can take a lot of work to find a Dr who won’t just go based on blood test results.

yes, it’s possible…you could be within the doctors testing limits, but still be low enough to not function well.

How much weight is she trying to lose?

She has gainned a lot of weight in the last two yrs but she wants to loose about 50 pounds or more I am sure she is 190 ish at 5’6. The good thing is that she still works out very hard for so little success.I will let her know to ask her DR what in her blood test she is looking at and if she is indeed looking at the TSH and not the T-3 and T-4 then it would make sence its like the LH harmone being high with out the Testicles producing testosterone but seeing the LH being high and assuming the testosterone would be high as well.

Now that I look at it like that it does seem silly to look at the TSH and not the T-3 and T-4… Why do they do that? Is it easier to see the TSH results? If so then that means that the DR is lazy … Well I am as frustrated as she is and I feel helpless . But I will look at some other suppliments to support her Thyroid in addition to getting her to find another Doctor who has a little more insight than the one she has. Doctors dont know everything and having an open mind is a good thing. Not everything is textbook.

Thanks for the responses

It’s expensive to test, plain and simple…

Her Insurance should cover it with the usual co pay I think … no way ta find out but try

I was diagnosed with severe Hypothyroidism about 3 years ago.
I currently take about 250mcg of Levothyroxine,increased from an original 50 mcg in increments after several blood tests.

Before I was diagnosed,
My metabolism started to slow down and my energy levels hit rock bottom,I literally would come home from work,eat something,then tiredness would hit me like a sledgehammer.I would wake up about 14/15 hours later,often fully clothed with the TV still on,lying on the sofa or on top of my duvet.
Sometimes I didn’t even make it home,and woke up on a bus or train at the depot at the end of the line.

I felt like I had been drugged,like someone had ‘slipped me a mickey’!
Before this I used to do weight training or cardio 3/4 days a week,and Kickboxing twice a week!
I feel great now and am back training hard.
I had seen several doctors though,and they admitted the results are not always easy to interpret,and the readings were sometimes up or down,without explanation,and a re-test would contradict an earlier reading.
I am now referred to a specialist who is monitoring it.

I believe it pays to remember your doctor has a broad/general understanding of medicine,no doctor knows everything,that’s why we have specialists!
I don’t know what country you’re in,but we call doctors GP’s here-it stands for General Practitioner.I think the name says it all-GENERAL practitioner,as in they have a GENERAL knowledge of medicine!

A friend of mine has a wife who is currently studying medicine to become a GP,and it was her who actually told me this.
The problem is some doctors are arrogant,and THINK they know what they are talking about,instead of conceding.

Since I learned this,I am no longer afraid to ask for a second opinion,and WILL insist to see a specialist if I don’t think they have done everything they can,or am not happy with their answers.
Some doctors will get offended,if so,get another doctor.

I have got much better results since doing so.
I had a scalp condition once and insisted on seeing a dermatologist as the doctor I was with was slow to diagnose or stuborn about trying different treatments,he reffered me and it got sorted.
But if I didn’t ask,he wouldn’t have done it.
Now I don’t mess around,I just ask.
Mind you,we have the NHS here,so I don’t pay any extra!

What worries me though,is you say she doesn’t get much sleep during the week?
Thats going to affect her recovery and therefore muscle growth and metabolism.
Start there,get sleeping pills or try ZMA.
It is possible her levels are ‘borderline’ and her Thyroid Gland is slightly underactive,it’s a complex gland.
There are supplements/formulas you can buy online for thyroid support (Google ‘Thyroid support’) for borderline conditions or severe Hypothyroidism that needs additional factors.

I also have hypothyroidism. I was diagnosed with the TSH as well as T3 and T4. Also, another test I was given which was a more accurate testing was an MRI. I was given a pill with radioactive iodine before the MRI, which allowed them to see how much sodium my thyroid was uptaking.

Also, another test I was given in conjunction was an ultrasound. May sound strange , but most the time when someone has decreased thryoid function they develop nodules on their thryoid. The nodules are from the gland enlarging and trying to produce more hormone. I had the nodules. I started on synthroid and the nodules went away.

THere is no risk of cancer. Synthroid (levothyroxine-generic) is naturally produced in the body. If you truly need it and are deficient, it just allows your metabolism to function at the right level.

I’m no expert, but I do have a lot of experience in this area since I myself have a form of hypothyroidism called hashimoto’s thyroditis. I would consult with an endocrinologist that specializes in endocrine/metabolic issues to verify if there truly is a problem or not.

Something else to keep in mind, if she does have hypothyroidism, her thyroid will likely be enlarged and her body temp. would stay low like 97 and below due to decreased metabolic function. THis can also cause decreased intolerance to cold weather and many, many other symptoms.

To sum all this up. There are normally more than one ways to confirm thyroiditis, but I would not depend upon a family physician to diagnose it. Please see a specialist. It will make the difference since this is all they do.