Basically, I've had various symptoms that all started around when my anxiety went through the roof senior year of highschool; hair loss, hyperhidrosis (possibly unrelated), gluten sensitivity, IBS type things, sebhorreic dermatitis.
I am 24 now and had a bunch of labwork done. Here it is.
- TSH, 3rd Generation 2.97 (.40-4.50 mIU/L)
- T4, FREE 1.4 (.8-1.8 ng/dL)
- T3, FREE 2.9 (2.3-4.2 pg/mL)
- T3, REVERSE 47 H (11-32 ng/dL)
- CORTISOL, TOTAL 23.2 H (3.0-17)
- Ferritin 148
- B12 342
P.S. My free T3/RT3 ratio is 6.2 . I read it is supposed to be above 20 or higher to be healthy.
Thanks in advance. It really means a lot.
Edit: Is anyone familiar with the Free T3/RT3 ratio hypothesis?
asked byorangepeels (106)
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on August 17, 2011
at 11:27 PM
Here's some info that will enable you to hack your own results - at least up to a point.
"What is reverse T3? Reverse T3 (RT3 or REVT3) is a biologically inactive form of T3. Normally, when T4 is converted to T3 in the body, a certain percentage of the T3 is in the form of RT3. When the body is under stress, such as during a serious illness, thyroid hormone levels may be outside of normal ranges even though there is no thyroid disease present. RT3 may be elevated in non-thyroidal conditions, particularly the stress of illness. It is generally recommended that thyroid testing be avoided in hospitalized patients or deferred until after a person has recovered from an acute illness. Use of the RT3 test remains controversial, and it is not widely requested."
This may be related to your high cortisol level. Be aware that there is controversy as to the accuracy of a "snapshot" blood cortisol level and whether cortisol via saliva is a more accurate test. The following will take you through an explanation of a thyroid panel. It goes for about 4 pages. Go all the way through. It is well done and clear and I consider it to be a reliable source.
Here's info for your ferritin level, which is within range.
Here's info for your B12, which is also within range.
The following is a possible explanation for your elevated cortisol and RT3. I have not read this site carefully and am uncertain of its quality. However, the info on this page is largely info that is available piecemeal on other sites in less accessible forms that to my knowledge is accurate. I don't know about the rest of the site. May have mixed quailty info, or other - unsure. So explore it in that vein.
"Why does my body produce RT3 (Reverse T3)? In any situation where your body needs to conserve energy, such as emotional, physical, or biological stress, your thyroid will properly convert any excess T4 to the inactive Reverse T3 (RT3) as a way to clear out the extra and unneeded storage T4. Reasons this can be propelled in action include being chronically or acutely sick (such as having the flu, pneumonia, etc), after surgery, after a car accident or any acute injury, chronic stress causing high cortisol, being exposed to an extremely cold environment, diabetes, or even being on drugs like beta blocks and amiodarone.,"
So, these can all give you some good info. There is also a calculator for T3/RT3 on the site of the last link.
What has your Doc/healthcare provider explained to you about these results?
Are you unclear or uncertain about whatever has been communicated to you?
Given the history you describe and symptoms, your results seem suggestive of the need to work on the STRESS/anxiety issues.
But I am not a physician and labs are only data. Appropriate interpretation from a solid clinical knowlege base and clinical correlation is quite another matter.
on March 03, 2012
at 09:02 AM
Hey man (or woman?),
I know this is an old thread, but I'm around your age and I've had similar problems. I think I can help.
1) The overriding imperative for you is to reduce stress by all possible means. Stress is a very significant biochemical phenomenon. A dominance of stress hormones could potentially cause all of the problems you describe, especially a low ratio of T3 to RT3, which may be the primary mechanism behind the majority of your symptoms.
"Stress" includes not only psychological stress, but physical stress: don't exercise too much (no more than about 30 minutes a day maximum), eat plenty of carbs from quality sources like sweet potato, and don't drink, smoke, or do drugs. And don't obsess over your diet! Just eat well, eat hearty, ENJOY your meals and try to relax as much as possible.
2) I would supplement iodine and selenium according to Paul Jaminet's recommendations, which you can find by doing a little digging on his blog. Basically, you start with a low dose and increase it very gradually over a long period of time. Don't get impatient, because increasing the dose too quickly can cause problems. Make sure to take some selenium (200 mcg) daily along with it. You should also tend to other important micronutrients like zinc, magnesium, vit. D, vit. A, and all of the other essential vitamins and minerals.
3) Your ferritin is probably higher than optimal. If you can, I would test other markers of iron status (transferrin saturation, serum iron, iron binding capacity, etc.). Learn how to interpret them--it's fairly easy. A high or even high normal transferrin saturation, high serum iron, and low iron binding capacity indicate some degree of iron overload. If this is the case, you would probably benefit from donating blood frequently enough to get the ferritin down around 30.
4) Your B12 levels seem pretty low to me, though you don't give units, and I don't know much about normal or optimal levels. I think mine are usually much higher than that. Low B12 is usually accompanied by low levels of other important B vitamins, notably B6 and folate. A deficiency of any or all of those vitamins would definitely cause anxiety and poor stress tolerance, as well as creating other downstream biochemical logjams that could influence thyroid function.
You should (a) get a Complete Blood Count and (b) get your homocysteine levels tested. If MCV is greater than 92 or homocysteine is greater than 7, you probably have a deficiency of folate, B12, B6, or TMG or some combination of all of them. If so, you would GREATLY benefit from supplementing all four in their methylated forms (methylfolate, methylcobalamin, pyridoxal-5-phosphate, and TMG). After some tinkering to dial in the best dose of each (too much can cause problems), this will help to reduce anxiety and stress, improve sleep and mood, and generally help the biochemical machinery of the body run more smoothly. Very important, this.
Magnesium will also help reduce anxiety and tension and improve sleep.
Once you get the thyroid hormones functioning properly, many of your other symptoms will resolve spontaneously. Thyroid is absolutely central to all aspects of health. And stress of any kind sabotages thyroid function quite significantly. That's why it's priority number 1.
on August 18, 2011
at 06:35 AM
I suggest you go to http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/NaturalThyroidHormones/ , join, and post your lab results for the gurus there to go over.
When I switched from Eltroxin to Desiccated Thyroid I found them to be very knowledgable and helpful at analyzing my lab tests.
If it appears you have adrenal issues, there is another site for advice on that.
on August 17, 2011
at 08:20 PM
do you supplement with iodine? or take a thyroid supp? (I'm not saying whether you should or shouldn't... I am asking for background information purposes)
your cortisol looks much higher than the 'max'. Are you stressed?
I don't know what to make of these numbers because I am not familiar with what they mean, but I am hoping that someone with experience in dealing with these types of lab numbers might have some insight for us.