Never Feel Anxious About Lab Values Again- Analyze Your Blood Test Results
September 24, 2018
September 24, 2018
Never Feel Anxious About Lab Values Again- Analyze Your Blood Test Results
As a general rule, accurate diagnosis is the key to get the best treatment in medical field. If diagnosis is not right, treatment will not work. Sometimes, it may go against you. So here we are! You can see the process of analyzing your blood test results, and you will never feel anxious about lab values again.
Fig: Is your Lab Test Report Normal
Managing hypothyroidism is not easy and misdiagnosis often takes place. If you have symptoms of hypothyroidism and you see the doctor, you will simply get alternative hormones without doctors asking any further questions about the cause of this condition.
Even worse, if you get blood tests normal but you have hypothyroid systems, they will simply tell you that you are fine. Even if you insist that there is something wrong, they might just give you an antidepressant, as they won’t have clue about your symptoms.
- It is because of complex procedures in thyroid physiology.
- There are several steps involved in the production, uptake and conversion of thyroid hormone in your body.
- Malfunction in any of these steps, can cause symptoms of hypothyroid, but it may not be seen on common lab tests.
- Simply assuming that all cases of hypothyroidism need same treatment and have same cause, doesn’t make sense.
- However, the problem is when treatment standard for hypothyroidism doesn’t give much concern.
So, let’s discuss the thyroid dysfunction patterns which are not detected on common lab tests and solutions to analyze blood tests-
Having any of these patterns in your body means your thyroid is not working well and you would suffer from its symptoms.
However, it is even more painful when you are told that there is nothing wrong in your body when you visit a conventional doctor.
- Normally, T4 and TSH are the markers of a typical thyroid panel.
- According to lab, the ranges vary for these markers.
- It is a problem in standard ranges.
- Another problem is that these ranges don’t tell about healthy range as they are not research based.
- It is based on bell curve of values that are obtained from the individuals who visit the labs to perform test.
Obviously, sick people visit the labs for blood test. If thyroid blood test normal range is created on results from those people, does it clarify anything about their health?
Fig: Thyroid Blood Test Normal But Still Have Symptoms
Low conversion from T4 to T3
Thyroid is a hormone and T4 is its inactive form which should be turned into T3 before it is used by the body. Over 90% of thyroid has been produced in T4 form. Increased cortisol levels and inflammation are main causes behind this particular pattern. Cell membranes are the place where conversion from T4 to T3 takes place.
Cell membranes are damaged by inflammatory cytokines and our ability of T4 to T3 conversion is impaired. Elevated cortisol level also restricts T4 to T3 conversion. You will suffer symptoms of hypothyroid with this pattern but TSH and T4 levels will remain normal. It will be low if you get your T3 tested, which is under low settings.
Pituitary dysfunction causing hypothyroidism
The Increasing cortisol level is highly responsible for this pattern. It is indeed caused by blood sugar problem, active infection, pregnancy, chronic stress, insulin resistance, or hypoglycemia.
The pituitary gland may fatigue by these stressors at the base of brain so it can no longer show the thyroid to release enough hormone of thyroid. It is also common with thyroid gland. Our pituitary gland doesn’t send right signals.
You will have low TSH than the functional range, i.e. 1.8-3.0, but under standard (0.5-5.0) range with this pattern along with hypothyroid symptoms. In the functional and lab range, T4 will be recorded low.
Increased TBG levels causing Hypothyroidism
TBG or Thyroid Binding Globulin is the protein transfers thyroid hormone with the blood. Thyroid is not available and inactive for the tissues once it is bound to TBG.
In case of high TBG levels, unbound or free thyroid hormone levels will be low and cause hypothyroidism. T4 and TSH will be reported normal in hypothyroidism test with this pattern. T3 will be low, and TBG and T3 uptake would be tested higher.
Elevated estrogen levels are responsible for increased TBG, which are usually due to estrogen replacement (like estrogen creams or Premarin) or birth control pills. It is important to clear increased estrogen from the body to cure this pattern.
Reduced TBG also causes Hypothyroid symptoms
It is the exact replica of above pattern. Free thyroid hormone may record high with low TBG levels. It is assuming that it causes hyperthyroid symptoms. However, taking free thyroid too much in the blood may develop resistance in the cells against it.
Despite having enough of thyroid, cells would be unable to use it and you will still suffer hypothyroid symptoms. T4 and TSH would be normal in this pattern. TBG and T3 uptake would consider low and T3 would be high when tested.
High testosterone levels are the main cause of reduced TBG levels. It is usually related with insulin resistance and PCOS in women. It is important to balance blood sugar and reverse insulin resistance to treat this pattern.
Resistance to Thyroid glands
Both pituitary and thyroid glands work well in this pattern. But when needed, hormones resist getting into cells, which is the main cause of hypothyroidism. In this pattern, all the markers would be normal as there is no way to test cellular receptor function.
Usually, elevated cortisol levels and chronic stress are the major culprits behind thyroid resistance. Genetic factors and high levels of homocysteine are also responsible.
Our thyroid controls a lot of body systems and processes. It even controls our heart and brain functions, as well as growth of our nails and hair, and even our digestion and metabolism in the body.
No other hormone in our body can play such different roles. So, it goes without saying that most of the functions in our body may affect when thyroid becomes unable to work.
However, the problem is thyroid physiology varies from person to person and is very complex. When you have symptoms like weight gain or constant tiredness related to thyroid, your problem may be different and more complex than a patient who can be treated by just giving thyroid replacement medicine.
Keep in mind that thyroid dysfunction has nothing to do with sign of aging, as it is commonly believing thing. You may even have symptoms of thyroid, despite normal lab results.
As a results, there is no magic pill to fix your thyroid that can work for every patient. Rather than diagnosing levels of thyroid, doctors usually make more complex diagnosis to know why a patient is struggling with symptoms.
Here are some of the hidden problems related with thyroid and what you can do to deal with each –
Thyroid dysfunction due to resistance
This is not a typical thyroid problem that most women have. Instead, it is a problem with cell receptor. As discussed above, thyroid hormones are responsible for most functions of our body to work well.
However, toxins and inflammation block the cell receptors and our body feels hypothyroid symptoms, despite the fact that hormone is producing well.
It is simply because those hormones don’t get where they should go. You will get normal TSH values but you will still feel low.
Lab tests – Markers like homocysteine and CRP levels along with reverse T3 can drop light on availability of hormone receptors and inflammation levels. Low HDL and high triglyceride levels are also the symptoms of insulin resistance, which usually takes place with resistance to thyroid.
What you can do – Resveratrol and liposomal turmeric are best supplements to deal with high levels of inflammation.
Autoimmune thyroid issues
According to a research, around 90% of all cases have autoimmune hypothyroidism. It is one of the most common signs of Hashimoto’s disease. Well, thyroid is not the root of the illness when it takes place. Instead, it is the victim of misled attack by immune system, in which it is confused as a virus by your body.
You usually get the common thyroid medication when you see your doctor. Whether you have autoimmune disease or true hypothyroidism affecting your thyroid. However, we are familiar to cure autoimmune thyroid disorders naturally in functional medicine and it can vary from person to person, as our body is biologically different.
Tests – TBG antibodies and Thyroid peroxidase
What you can do – To manage this condition naturally, you can do a lot of things. It is good if you heal the gut by making diet change and taking compounds like Baicalin to promote Treg (T cell) to manage immune system.
Increased levels of thyroid-binding globulin
High estrogen levels are most commonly in women, especially those who are using estrogen creams or birth control pills. All of the hormones are moving across the body on thyroid binding globulins (TBG), which carry proteins throughout the body. In case of increased TBG levels, it could increase protein-bound thyroid hormones, which have no use for the body.
Tests – Free T3, TBG, and T4, along with expanded panel of female hormone.
What to do – You can take herbs like milk thistle to clear excess hormones from the pathways of detoxification and also mythylation by taking active B vitamins.
Also known as low T3 syndrome, this pattern is commonly related to chronic adrenal stress as well as the increased cortisol levels. Most of the thyroid hormone comes as T4, which is inactive metabolically and it should be turning to T3 to use in the body. Over 80% of conversion of thyroid takes places in liver and 20% in gut.
In this process, 5’ deiodinase is a special hormone takes an iodine molecule away from T4 to activate T3. Medical literature is covering this pattern for years but it is not improving effectively by thyroid replacing hormones. A lot of thyroid drugs are T4 synthetic, which is not the issue with this pattern.
Tests to conduct – Total T3 and free, microbiome test, liver enzymes, and testing magnesium, selenium, and zinc nutrients.
What you can do – Along with getting gut, adrenal fatigue, and liver health controlled, you can promote healthy thyroid function by taking foods high in zinc, selenium and magnesium. Some of the best options are shellfish, brazil nuts, and oysters.
Pituitary Hypofunction and Hypothyroidism
Our thyroid simply follows the instructions from the brain. If pituitary gland malfunctions, especially due to chronic infections, chronic illness, or even benign pituitary tumor, you will suffer improper functioning of hypothalamic-pituitary thyroid (HPT).
Pituitary gland serves as a pathway between your thyroid and brain. It is placed at the base of our brain. If it is not interacting well with thyroid gland, it will be fine but it will not get the signal to work.
Tests to run – Inspect low levels of T3 and T4, even with low or normal TSH. Also go with labs to check for EBV or Epstein-Barr virus.
What you can do – To promote proper HPA function and pituitary health, it is recommended to use the tools that can support natural brain functions, such as olive leaf, astragalus, sage leaf, zinc, L-lysine, and vitamin C.
This function is common in people who have high testosterone levels, type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance, and in women who have polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). It is commonly assuming by most of us that if body produces high levels of T3, the thyroid hormone would be metabolically active.
As you know, taking too much of anything is not good, no matter how healthy it is. Similarly, overly T3 conversion can be harmful for cell receptors and they may resist T3. Even though there is a lot of conversion, you cannot get the most of it.
Tests – free and testosterone serum, total T3 and T4, HbgA1c and fasting blood sugar tests.
What you can do – Along with healthy foods like fruits, veggies, healthy fats, and meats, also take natural supplements like chromium and alpha-lipoic acid medicines, cinnamon etc. which can balance your blood sugar levels.
When it comes to usual thyroid health, sea vegetables like nori, dulse, and arame are the important sources of nutrients, including iodine, which is important to improve the production of fuel thyroid hormone.
Why Am I Always Tired And Have No Energy?
Also known as feeling sluggish, overwhelmed, low, overtired, weakness, or exhaustion, extreme fatigue is considered the most common symptom of thyroid disorder. If you have to take a nap after lunch or when you wake up you find your brain foggy, unrefreshed despite having proper sleep. There are many people like you.
However, there are some ways to deal with your fatigue, such as making changes to your thyroid dose, looking for another drug or changing your sleep habits.
Thyroid and Fatigue
Fatigue is the most common hypothyroid symptom (underactive thyroid gland), which takes place due to the lower production of thyroid hormone. When the cure for hypothyroid is complete, the best thing is that many patients report improvement or recovery of fatigue.
Fatigue is a symptom of overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism), which is usually because of anxiety, insomnia, or improper sleep habits. The treatment of fatigue is with the cures of hyperthyroid problem and Graves’ disease.
What causes extreme fatigue?
If you are experiencing fatigue even after treatment of thyroid disease, there are other causes of extreme fatigue in women to look for –
With both hyperthyroid and hypothyroid, people have signs of depression. Along with extreme fatigue symptoms, here are other signs of depression –
- Feeling low or sad
- Low interest in day-to-day activities
- Problem in concentration
- Having too little or too much
- Slow down of movements, thoughts, or restlessness
- Feeling of guilt or hopelessness
- Problem in sleep like problem in staying asleep, waking up unrefreshed, or falling asleep
- Depressing thoughts
If you are having any of these symptoms, it is important to see the doctor. Treatment also includes the combination of antidepressant with psychotherapy and it can sometimes change your life.
According to a research, thyroid disease is related with sleep problems like sleep apnea. When breathing stops for a while when you sleep. Fatigue is highly responsible for sleep apnea, because of lack of oxygen. Along with grogginess and fatigue, other signs of this problem are gasping for air when waking up, snoring, headache in morning, and waking up to urinate more often at night.
If you are suffering from fatigue for a long term, and it takes place with other symptoms like wide muscle pains and aches, it might be fibromyalgia. According to a research, fibromyalgia also causes by an autoimmune thyroid disease which is “Hashimoto’s thyroiditis”.
Usually because of low RBC count, Anemia is commonly accrue due to hypothyroid. It may also lead to pounding heart, dizziness, and shortness of breath.
Inferior sleep habits
When thyroid disease is usually relevant to improper and un-refreshing sleep and insomnia, fatigue can also the cause due to poor sleep patterns. The National Sleep Foundation suggests adults to sleep at least 7 to 8 hours and most of us are not so lucky to get that much sleep on daily basis.
Here are the tips to help you improve your sleep patterns. It can help you give proper rest to your mind and body to get through the day in healthy and happy way –
- Stick to the same schedule to sleep on both weekends and weekdays.
- Your bedroom must be cooler than other rooms.
- Avoid television, laptop, smartphones and other devices before sleep
- Don’t drink alcohol and caffeine before sleep and in the afternoon
- Use blackout curtains or blinds or use dim lights in bedroom
- Avoid naps
- Don’t exercise after dinner
Here are some of the steps to relax your body before sleep –
- Take hot bath or shower before sleep
- Listen to relaxing music to fall asleep
- Use earplugs or sound conditioner to avoid noise
- Drink relaxing herbal tea before sleep
- Have protein-filled bedtime snack
Along with aforementioned medical causes, there are several potential causes of extreme tiredness, including the followings:
- Chronic liver or kidney disease,
- Alcohol, infection,
- Drug abuse and side effects of medications.
- According to some people, changing diet improve fatigue, be it avoiding sugar, gluten, or dairy.
Never Feel Anxious About Lab Values Again – Analyze your blood test
Lab.me has been designed by scientists who are always trying hard to make platform easier and smarter. It is able to add current blood test results ordered by the doctor and you can get the full value. It is one of the best features of this lab test analyzer admire by its users.
You can get scientifically-proven and personalized recommendations for supplement, nutrient, lifestyle changes and exercise on the basis of biomarkers, which come with lab-based tests, without any additional trip.
Even better, you don’t even have to add the results manually, which is very cumbersome. You don’t need Ph.D. in biology to understand blood test results and wade through the complex terms like GLU, ALT, etc. Even though blood tests and codes are for doctors, it doesn’t mean you cannot understand it.
Now you don’t have to do manual entry. All you need to scan your blood test report, upload it, and leave the application to do the rest.
Here’s how it work –
- First of all, you get your blood test report in PDF or as hard copy
- Scan the report and save as PDF or JPG
- Upload the file to Lab.me
- Get your results in your inbox
Don’t worry if you have report in several pages. Send multiple pages in one upload. This will send confirmation email after receiving your report. Lab.me analyzes your report with its smart machine intelligence technology.
Also, it extracts the text, including values, biomarkers, units, and date of test. The specialists will review your results to ensure accuracy. This is the technology where both machines and humans work together.
Harvard Disruptive Innovation Class of '18, MIT Sloan Business School Artificial Intelligence & Its Implications In Business.