Thyroid Disease Forum banner
1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Newbie
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all, I'm really concerned with the way my mental health is standing at the moment so thought I'd introduce myself and let people know what's what about my symptoms.

So iim a 21yr old female and in August last year (2011) I had a partial thyroidectomy due to a cyst on the left side of my thyroid, and after several FNAs my doctor decided it would be wise to have it removed (turned out to be about the size of a golf ball!!).

So recently, I'd say maybe the last 4-6 months I've gradually noticed myself getting hazier and hazier. I originally put this down to lots of partying at university etc, but then I really started to notice my own cognitive abilities versus those of my friends; mid conversation I would blank out and have no idea of the topic I was just discussing, my vocab has become exceedingly limited despite me having always been very bright and creative with my language. I also struggle to recall what I did 1 hour, 1 day, 1 week ago if asked on the spot. Mental arithmetic has become a struggle. It's deeply upsetting because I've always been a big thinker and love connecting with people through deep conversations but this is becoming hardr and harder now and it's making me anxious whenever i draw a blank around people I would otherwise be extrovertedly chatting with. I'm also becoming exhausted after shifts at work (Im a chef so stand up most of the day) and the skin between my fingers is dry and flaky.

I searched these symptoms and immediately thought I was becoming depressed. I could not figure out why though, with no real reason in my life to be doing so. On visiting the doctors one day she questioned me about my neck scar and it was then that I realised I hadn't had my bloods checked for a whole year since the op. anyway this is where I am at now; my TSH levels are 'borderline' high and apparently t4 and t3 are within range. I've been advised to get another check in 3 months. I'm really upset about the way my mental abilities are going, and 3 months seems a hideously long time to wait just to check something like that. I'm really concerned about my studies (going into 2nd year uni) and being able to focus in class. I feel like I'm starting to lose my personality. Has anyone got any tips for concentration/improving sharpness of mind in the meantime?

Thanks for reading my essay! Xxx

Ps I'm struggling to find previous pleasures enjoyable too, and rarely get excited like I used to any more. This is one of the main things I can't stand, my mind just feels like its empty or underwater a lot of the time... :(
 

·
Super Gold Veteran
Joined
·
262 Posts
Please get a copy of your labs from the doc. They'll mail them if you ask, and your lab results are your right as a patient.

Many of us have those same symptoms when we're "border-line". You may need thyroid medication.

Renee
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,624 Posts
apparently t4 and t3 are within range
Goal is mid to 3/4 of range.

I would bet you are in low range which is causing hypo symptoms.

Call the office and ask for a copy of your labs with ranges and post them.

Are you currently taking any replacement?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
19,367 Posts
amboo.13 said:
Hi all, I'm really concerned with the way my mental health is standing at the moment so thought I'd introduce myself and let people know what's what about my symptoms.

So iim a 21yr old female and in August last year (2011) I had a partial thyroidectomy due to a cyst on the left side of my thyroid, and after several FNAs my doctor decided it would be wise to have it removed (turned out to be about the size of a golf ball!!).

So recently, I'd say maybe the last 4-6 months I've gradually noticed myself getting hazier and hazier. I originally put this down to lots of partying at university etc, but then I really started to notice my own cognitive abilities versus those of my friends; mid conversation I would blank out and have no idea of the topic I was just discussing, my vocab has become exceedingly limited despite me having always been very bright and creative with my language. I also struggle to recall what I did 1 hour, 1 day, 1 week ago if asked on the spot. Mental arithmetic has become a struggle. It's deeply upsetting because I've always been a big thinker and love connecting with people through deep conversations but this is becoming hardr and harder now and it's making me anxious whenever i draw a blank around people I would otherwise be extrovertedly chatting with. I'm also becoming exhausted after shifts at work (Im a chef so stand up most of the day) and the skin between my fingers is dry and flaky.

I searched these symptoms and immediately thought I was becoming depressed. I could not figure out why though, with no real reason in my life to be doing so. On visiting the doctors one day she questioned me about my neck scar and it was then that I realised I hadn't had my bloods checked for a whole year since the op. anyway this is where I am at now; my TSH levels are 'borderline' high and apparently t4 and t3 are within range. I've been advised to get another check in 3 months. I'm really upset about the way my mental abilities are going, and 3 months seems a hideously long time to wait just to check something like that. I'm really concerned about my studies (going into 2nd year uni) and being able to focus in class. I feel like I'm starting to lose my personality. Has anyone got any tips for concentration/improving sharpness of mind in the meantime?

Thanks for reading my essay! Xxx

Ps I'm struggling to find previous pleasures enjoyable too, and rarely get excited like I used to any more. This is one of the main things I can't stand, my mind just feels like its empty or underwater a lot of the time... :(
Sounds very much like you should have been on thyroxine replacement all this time and by the way, it would be wise to have a follow-up ultra-sound of the remaining thyroid since it has been a year.

We would like to see your lab results with the ranges please!

And, what was the pathology report on the cyst/nodule?

Please read the link below; it will help you understand some things. If you don't have enough Free T3, cognitive ability declines. Actually, a lot of things decline.

Dr. Mercola (FREES)
http://www.mercola.com/article/hypothyroid/diagnosis_comp.htm
FREE T3 explained by Woliner
http://thyroid.about.com/cs/testsforthyroid/a/freet3.htm

 

·
Newbie
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for your responses so far guys, ill give those links a read this evening too.

I just spoke to the docs on the phone, they said I can go and get a paper copy of the results on weds, so ill post the numbers on here when I do, thank you all for caring!!

The worst bit is definitely the way I feel like my personality is fading. Is this normal/common for hypo? In secondary school I was so comfortable in myself and even got voted "miss opinionated" when I left, but now I struggle to even think about issues enough to know my own opinions on them. It feels like I'm just not interested and I'm turning into a vegetable! Its so strange, like I'm not allowed to access those parts of myself any more? Like a big blank wall is preventing me.

I just hope I'm not going crazy and turning into a zombie who has no interest in anything anymore :(
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,964 Posts
amboo.13, when I'm very hypo, I often feel like I'm moving in slow motion or underwater. Everything feels kind of dulled and I'm slower to respond to things or think of things and I sometimes blank out or struggle for words. It freaked me out a little at first since one of my grandmothers had Alzheimer's, but then I noticed when my numbers got closer to normal, I start livening up again and feeling like myself.

Definitely get a copy of your labs and post with the ranges so people here can see and give you some advice. Are you on any thyroid replacement medication? The half you have left might not be able to keep up with you anymore and you may need medication to help.
 

·
Veteran Member
Joined
·
121 Posts
I have felt the same. I used to love to run. Now I can barely get myself to walk my dog. I just started my thyroid meds. I feel for you. Hope things get better soon. I would keep bugging your Doc and if he won't listen go somewhere else.
 

·
Newbie
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Just had a frustrating phonecall with the doctor;

TSH 8.18 outside of 0.3-5.5
T4 14.3 in 12-22
He didn't tell me T3

I said "so there's nothing that can be done about my symptoms of depression and brain fog? My head feels like its full of cotton wool"

He said "but your levels are normal"

"I understand that, but I'm concerned about my studies, this is an important academic year"

"I suggest you come back for another blood sample in 3 months"

The uni year is 6 months long this is f***ing ridiculous... He spoke to me as if I was a 6 year old...
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,918 Posts
That TSH level is NOT normal. What is this doctor thinking? And your T4 is way low...still within range, but very low, and you would be better off if it were in the upper end of the range. In my opinion, you should try a low dose of Synthroid, such as 25 or 50 mcg. See if you can negotiate with this doctor to put you on a "trial dose" to see if things improve. If this doctor will not agree to that, then you need to find a new doctor who listens to you AND knows how to read lab results.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
19,367 Posts
amboo.13 said:
Just had a frustrating phonecall with the doctor;

TSH 8.18 outside of 0.3-5.5
T4 14.3 in 12-22
He didn't tell me T3

I said "so there's nothing that can be done about my symptoms of depression and brain fog? My head feels like its full of cotton wool"

He said "but your levels are normal"

"I understand that, but I'm concerned about my studies, this is an important academic year"

"I suggest you come back for another blood sample in 3 months"

The uni year is 6 months long this is f***ing ridiculous... He spoke to me as if I was a 6 year old...
OMG!!! You levels are NOT at all good. TSH way too high and T4 practically in the basement.

Please please get a new doc. I don't know how you are able to function.

Can you find an NP in your area?

Get TSH, FREE T3 and FREE T4 not T3 and T4

Here is info so you can advocate for yourself here.

Here is a good place to learn how to interpret your labs.
http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com/lab-values/#

I feel really bad that you have been so summarily dismissed.

 

·
Veteran Member
Joined
·
121 Posts
Definitely get a new Doc! The TSH range is supposed to be .3 to 3. You have to be miserable.
 

·
Newbie
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for your support with this issue guys!
Its way too hard to argue with someone in that position of medical authority.
I hate getting ignored for something that I know isn't right within myself, based only on a piece of paper. Are there no cognitive ability/memory tests to prove how I'm suffering really badly with short term memory?

The problem is this is my new doctor at my university, the old one who took the tests was actually much more understanding, but she is 300 miles away from my new home. I may be able to stay in contact with her, I really trust her judgement a lot more and she has put a lot of time into following my issues up, its just a shame I can be registered at that surgery anymore.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,918 Posts
So...what options do you have as far as seeing a different doctor? Are you constrained to stay within the university system, or can you see a doctor outside of the university? If you have to stay within the university system, are there other doctors there you could see, "for a second opinion"?

Please keep fighting - you KNOW you are not well, and it's probably a pretty easy fix.
 

·
Newbie
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The new health centre isn't linked to the uni, its just in the town where I study, so I think there are other doctors I could request to see. Do you have any tips on how to change doctors? How do you find one who would be more helpful? It seems I have to get worse before I can get treated which seems incredibly stupid...

Also are my symptoms connected to my levels in all of your opinions? The one I spoke to on the phone made me feel like a hyperchondriac (?) Or that my loss of brain power was really insignificant. Do you think that a small dose of thyroid medication (synthyroid?) would do the trick?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,065 Posts
Yes, I think it is safe to assume your symptoms are related to your thyroid. :)

Synthroid would probably do the trick. I'm not sure how "small" of a dose you'll need, but it would be beneficial to start low and titrate up as needed.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,918 Posts
I agree with joplin.
 

·
Newbie
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Brilliant, im going to persue this as much as I can.

Found this in my readings:
TSH Levels

TSH Less than .5/.7 -- This is considered hyperthyroid (too much thyroid hormone) at most labs in the U.S. You may be anxious, find it hard to sleep, hair falling out, diarrhea, and other symptoms

TSH 1 to 2 -- The optimal normal level for most people. This is the TSH range where the majority of people feel best. It is sometimes considered "too low" by less-informed doctors.

TSH 2 to 4.7/5.5 -- "Normal" range according to some lab standards, but the recommended top end of the range was changed as of March 2003 to 3.0 Some people feel well in this range, but many suffer low-grade hypothyroidism symptoms at this level.

TSH 4.7/5.5 to 10 -- Formerly considered "subclinical hypothyroidism" levels, but as of March 2003, above 3.0 is considered evidence of possible hypothyroidism. These levels show hypothyroidism, but amazingly, some doctors won't even treat these levels, and do not attribute hypothyroidism symptoms felt by patients at this level to the hypothyroidism itself. Many people have symptoms at these levels.

TSH Above 10 -- Considered hypothyroid that merits treatment by most doctors


Also Ive just seen your signiture thing says you had a TSH of over 100! Wow!!!!!!!! How bad did you feel or does it kind of plateau?

After reading the above in Italics it makes me WANT a level of above 10 just so the doctors wake up and give me something. Is it acceptable to request a small dose of thyroid hormone? I feel they will just tell me I dont know what I'm talking about.

I just want to feel excited about things again. At the moment I'm in a contsant level mood of dullness. No fear or hope or anything, just nothing.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
19,367 Posts
amboo.13 said:
Brilliant, im going to persue this as much as I can.

Found this in my readings:
TSH Levels

TSH Less than .5/.7 -- This is considered hyperthyroid (too much thyroid hormone) at most labs in the U.S. You may be anxious, find it hard to sleep, hair falling out, diarrhea, and other symptoms

TSH 1 to 2 -- The optimal normal level for most people. This is the TSH range where the majority of people feel best. It is sometimes considered "too low" by less-informed doctors.

TSH 2 to 4.7/5.5 -- "Normal" range according to some lab standards, but the recommended top end of the range was changed as of March 2003 to 3.0 Some people feel well in this range, but many suffer low-grade hypothyroidism symptoms at this level.

TSH 4.7/5.5 to 10 -- Formerly considered "subclinical hypothyroidism" levels, but as of March 2003, above 3.0 is considered evidence of possible hypothyroidism. These levels show hypothyroidism, but amazingly, some doctors won't even treat these levels, and do not attribute hypothyroidism symptoms felt by patients at this level to the hypothyroidism itself. Many people have symptoms at these levels.

TSH Above 10 -- Considered hypothyroid that merits treatment by most doctors


Also Ive just seen your signiture thing says you had a TSH of over 100! Wow!!!!!!!! How bad did you feel or does it kind of plateau?

After reading the above in Italics it makes me WANT a level of above 10 just so the doctors wake up and give me something. Is it acceptable to request a small dose of thyroid hormone? I feel they will just tell me I dont know what I'm talking about.

I just want to feel excited about things again. At the moment I'm in a contsant level mood of dullness. No fear or hope or anything, just nothing.
whereas in patients with hypothyroidism, poor memory, mental slowing, and depression are frequently noted .....................etc..
http://www.ajnr.org/content/23/9/1539.full

Background: Hypothyroidism may profoundly alter mental function and influence mood and cognition, but the neural correlates of these impairments and of thyroid hormone treatment are not well understood.
Read on.......http://www.endocrine-abstracts.org/ea/0011/ea0011s16.htm
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,065 Posts
amboo.13 said:
Also Ive just seen your signiture thing says you had a TSH of over 100! Wow!!!!!!!! How bad did you feel or does it kind of plateau?
Well, ya know, I wouldn't recommend someone try to attain such a number for recreational purposes :)tongue0013:), but it was manageable just for the simple fact that I knew it would get sorted out sooner or later, if that makes sense.

Just remember to not get too focused on that TSH. It's only part of the picture and you'll serve yourself well by looking at free T3 and free T4 as well.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,918 Posts
amboo.13 said:
Also Ive just seen your signiture thing says you had a TSH of over 100! Wow!!!!!!!! How bad did you feel or does it kind of plateau?
I'll echo what joplin just said...I was over 100 twice, but only for a couple of weeks each time (versus months for joplin). It was very tolerable, but I wouldn't want to live there too long. I could live with it because I knew it was short-term.

This is a guess, but I think hovering at a TSH of 8 for many months is probably worse than living with a TSH over 100 for a few weeks.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top