Hey everyone. I've been feeling pretty frustrated and upset since yesterday's doctor's appointment, during which I discovered something I've suspected for a long time: I am very close to being hyperthyroid. The problem is my doctor doesn't want to treat me.

He says I should just exercise to relieve myself of the excess energy. That's his solution to everything. I'm a fitness fanatic, and I still feel like crap. Unless I am more outside the range of normal, he wont do anything.

I read a lot around here that you can't really trust lab normals when it comes to thyroid results, and that often doctors will ignore women with significant issues. I wish I had a copy of the results, I am just going by memory, but my TSH was something like .5? and T4 18 (not sure if free or what units or whatever, sorry) with a range of 4 – 19.

I have had symptoms for so long. The birth control pill makes me feel better. I read that estrogen slows down the thyroid so it supports the idea that I am having problems with it. My number one issue is anxiety and nervousness. I had been getting very frequent panic attacks before I started my anti-depressants. My whole body just feels so wound up all the time. I can feel a crawling or buzzing electrical feeling under my skin all the time.

I feel worn out but at the same time restless. I get very weak and my hands ALWAYS shake and I am known to drop things frequently and at times things seem to just fly out of my hands. I can never sit still and am always fidgeting. I pee all the time and have many bowel movements a day (sorry for the TMI). I can't stand heat and sweat a lot. I GET HEART PALPITATIONS ALL THE TIME. I hate this one so much. When I was not on the pill, my periods were once every 6 weeks or so and they'd last 2 or 3 days, even with a copper IUD.

I even developed a bit of an eating disorder because once I started tracking my calories I realized that I eat A LOT, like almost 3000 calories a day. I was not gaining weight but I was so upset by this that I tried restricting them but failed, leading to a lot of problems with eating. I am however quite slim.

My boyfriend has more than once said I resemble a squirrel.

Ugh! I don't know what I can do about this. Is this all in my head? Is it really okay to be that close to the edge of normal? I've been struggling to feel okay for years… the anxiety pretty much took over my life. I feel so hopeless now. Nobody understands, they just get annoyed with me, tell me to 'just relax'.

As I mentioned, I am taking anti depressants to help my anxiety. It is improving things, but I don't think it makes sense to take them if the thyroid is the problem… it seems like I should be treating that, right?

Long and rambly, not sure if anyone can help or how they can… but any advice or comments are appreciated. Thanks.

also posted to the thyroid community.

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19 Responses to “borderline” hyperthyroid, feel symptoms, doctor wont treat me, what to do?

  1. Zaclight says:

    I don’t have an thyriod issue but I want to address the issue with the doctor, Did you mention all your sympthoms to them? If you did and he just told you to “exercise” that’s bonkers! I am a diabetic, type 2, and I am no where near a normal range in my blood sugar numbers. I had my primary tell me to stop taking all my diabetic medications until she could “make sure I was really a diabetic” :/ I dropped her like a hot potatoe. I would suggest maybe getting a 2nd opinion if that’s possible. If not print out as much information as you can find and make another appointment and go back.

  2. Suoeva says:

    He says I am just an anxious person and that my symptoms are a result of anxiety. I need to relax and exercise more. That’s it. I had to really talk him into prescribing me the anti-depressant.

    That’s nuts what your doctor said to you… wow.

    I might just have to go back and be more assertive next time. He might listen if I present my case well enough. He has admitted before he doesn’t know much about the endocrine system and that he just goes by the lab normals.

  3. AbaNope says:

    Yikes! If he doesn’t know that much about the endocrine system, I don’t think he’s the right doctor to be treating a thyroid issue. I would definitely recommend getting a 2nd opinion from a more experienced doctor.

  4. Zaclight says:

    Can you get a refferal to a specialist than? There are people that specialize in that field! Yeah maybe going back and saying Look, There is something really wrong and we need to do something to resolve it because I can’t live like this will help?

  5. Eneita says:

    he’s nuts. I HAVE anxiety and those are not normal symptoms. Anxiety/panic attacks, yes. Everything else? No. Find a different doctor that will listen to you.

  6. AhvRa says:

    My levels were borderline. My doctor said he wasn’t going to treat it but since I am a woman of childbearing age, it’s very important to keep the levels in check so he prescribed a low dose of medication. I would maybe mention this to your doctor and if he still does not agree, you could always seek a second opinion.

  7. Suoeva says:

    Thanks. How do you feel since starting the low dose of medication?

  8. Eeefornia says:

    I don’t know if you’ve found an answer with this, but I’m currently dealing with symptoms of hypothyroid and possibly adrenal fatigue. I finally managed to get a highly qualified naturopath/reproductive endocrinologist to run some more tests and I’m hoping to fully figure out how to treat it in the next few weeks.

    My gp was unfortunately useless, he ran the normal bloodwork and told me everything was normal- I think due to the fact that there’s a LOT of debate about which TSH ranges are considered normal and abnormal.

    A good and informative website I came across is ‘stop the thyroid madness’ and it contains a lot of helpful information. Your symptoms aren’t something to be overlooked! Good luck getting help.

  9. Suoeva says:

    Good luck with your treatment! Interesting to know there is a lot of debate. I’ll check out that site you mentioned, thank you.

  10. NwoFire says:

    I would advise to keep advocating for treatment or to try a different doctor, until you get a chance to try medication – if you feel the symptoms are seriously negatively impacting your life.

    I am borderline hypo and I was experiencing many symptoms of full-on hypothyroidism. My doctor just felt that I needed to live with the rapid weight gain, muscle aches, hair loss, depression, and constant fatigue. I did not want to continue to live like that.

    Yet I kept reading that everyone’s body was quite different in sensitivities to thyroid levels, so when he wouldn’t budge I went to a naturopath who was open to prescribing a really low dose of medication. My life is very much improved on the low dose.

    Plus there are so many different tests that are not typically run for thyroid issues, I’m sure they are helping out with pointing those out in the thyroid community.

  11. Suoeva says:

    I’m so glad you are feeling better now! I am not surprised at all that people on the borderline can have symptoms, and that everyone’s sensitivities are different… thanks for the info.

  12. 31xova says:

    I’m hypothyroid, and I would suggest you see an endocrinologist and ask for the following tests. Those are serious symptoms. A TSH test alone is not the be all and end of hypothyroid diagnosis. Your TSH can be borderline, while your TS is not. And the guidelines for test values was recently reevaluated, as research has shown that the previous ones were not accurate to indicate low thyroid function.

    Free T3
    Free T4
    Reverse T3
    Thyroid peroxidase antibody(TPO)
    Antithyroglobulin antibody
    Sex hormone-binding globulin(SHBG)

    Good luck!

  13. Suoeva says:

    Very helpful, thanks!

  14. Ono99 says:

    I just wanted to comment to tell you that I am going through something similar. I went to a doctor to get tested, was asked to come back because I tested positive for “severe” hypothyroidism. I had already moved to Chicago to start school and asked them to send me the results to take to a new doctor. I got to my new doctor, he said he couldn’t take outside results and had me tested again, and it came back “borderline”. Even though my neck is swollen EVERY DAY and he even said that they looked very swollen, and I told him about my awful weight gain that I can’t get rid of, trouble swallowing, etc, he wouldn’t treat me. I went to another doctor, same thing. Some times it just doesn’t work talking to your doctor, because they just won’t treat you.

    I know that a lot of papers are being published in the medical world right now about how badly thyroid levels fluctuate and that “borderline” can just mean you got tested on a day where your thyroid was behaving, and now a lot of doctors are starting to treat borderline cases as well. I’m actually going to get tested back at the original place I went to before I moved away from home in a few days, I hope this time I can get proper treatment.

    I wish you all the best!

  15. Suoeva says:

    Geez, I hope you can get treatment, that really sucks.

    That’s very interesting information, too… thanks!

  16. 902all says:

    I have a lot of the same symptoms that you described, yet I have been tested for thyroid problems and they all came back fine. I am also on antidepressants and have been for several years. I also have anxiety problems and the heart flutters… what I’m getting at is that maybe it isn’t your thyroid.

    How long have you been on the antidepressants? The majority of psych meds can cause a flood of side effects and many of them are what you’ve described: anxiety, heart flutters, light headedness, restlessness, insomnia, increased appetite, etc. If you’ve been on the antidepressants for a long time and those symptoms developed or came to a head after you’ve been taking the meds, it might be time for a med change.

    You know your body more than anyone else does, and if you don’t feel like it could be the meds or you started taking the meds after the onset of the symptoms, then I think you need to find a different doctor who will listen to your concerns and treat you accordingly. If your doc is a general practice doc he may just go by the labwork instead of actually listening to the symptoms as a whole.

    Also, if you see a different doc for the antidepressants, I’d mention the physical symptoms you’re having to them too because like I said, a lot could be attributed to the meds.

    How much caffeine are you drinking on the daily basis? While it may not give you a noticeable boost in energy, it could contribute to the restlessness and heart flutters.

    You said you’re a fitness fanatic so I’d assume your doctor knows you already take care of your body that way so added physical activity won’t cure the restlessness.

    Either way, I really hope you find out what’s wrong. I’d definitely see a new doctor though if the current one isn’t listening to your concerns. You and your health is worth it!

  17. Suoeva says:

    I’ve been on the anti-depressants since mid December, and the other symptoms have been going on for years prior to that.

    The only physical symptoms I’ve gotten from those have been dry mouth and vertigo, and those go away 2 weeks after adjusting the dosage.

    The main symptom I have an issue with is my nerves feeling “raw”. I say its like a wire without the rubber insulation around it… I just feel so easily stimulated, and feel like I am buzzing all the time.

    The anti depressants have actually helped that.

    The main reason I suspect thyroid (other than the test) is that my symptoms have always been significantly worse when I am not on the birth control pill. I always thought this was strange until I read that estrogen binds to thyroid hormones, which is how I made the connection in the first place. Also, hyperthyroidism runs in the family, my mother, aunt, and grandmother all had issues.

    I drink a cup of coffee in the morning, lately. Before I started the anti depressants I usually wouldn’t consume caffeine at all, due to the panic attacks.

    I’m thinking maybe the easiest solution would be to try a slightly higher dose birth control pill, since that seems to make a difference.

    Thanks for your thoughts!

  18. Stacie says:

    I have been suffering with the exact same problems for years. I am also very close to being Hyperthyroid according to the labs. I just recently switched Doctors since my previous Doctor just keeps giving me meds for my anxiety and refuses to look into the issue any more. I have an appointment with an Endo on Monday, hoping he will do more lab work. Good luck to you, I can tell you I know what you are going through.

  19. Sali says:

    Which antidep are you on? what’s the dosage and for how long now? Was your original problem of thyroid ever fixed? Any update? seems like I am going through all of that but now I have refused to take any antidep meds but this has led my life to a stand still with many symptoms I can’t control or power through.

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