I’m happy to report that the Total Thyroid screen including Reverse T3 measurement is now much cheaper to do. The lab has brought out a combined test instead of us having to add the reverse T3 onto it. The total was £162 and is now down to £136 so well done them.
Here is the info on the Thyroid Test for you and why Reverse T3 is important – but sadly rarely looked for.
Known as the ‘unsuspected illness’, hypothyroidism accounts for a great number of complaints amongst children, adolescents and adults alike. Thyroid imbalances may elicit fatigue, depression, coldness, constipation, poor skin, headaches, PMS, dysmenorrhea, fluid retention, weight gain, anxiety/panic attacks, decreased memory and concentration, muscle and joint pain, and low sex drive.
The total thyroid screen gives you a way to investigate suspected thyroid dysfunction, including central gland activity, possible secondary gland involvement, hormone secretion, peripheral conversion of T4 to T3 and to Reverse T3. Reverse T3 is chemically similar to T3 but it is completely inactive and lowers the level of active hormone available to cells. This is termed low T3 syndrome or ‘sick euthyroid’ and is rarely looked for in standard tests.
The test will also highlight autoimmune responses such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis or Grave’s disease. These represent the most common autoimmune disorders, affecting women 10 times more frequently than men and increasing in incidence with age.
Both standard medical and optimal ranges are given.
Thyroid hormones are essential and primary regulators of the body’s metabolism. Imbalances can affect virtually every metabolic process in the body, exerting significant effects on mood and energy level.
Thyroid function has a profound impact on overall health via:
• Modulation of carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism
• Vitamin utilisation
• Mitochondrial function
• Digestive process
• Muscle and nerve activity
• Blood flow
• Oxygen utilisation
• Hormone secretion
• Sexual and reproductive health
• Many other physiological parameters
The Total Thyroid Screen reveals imbalances that often go undetected with more limited assessments. Testing measures:
• Unbound levels of T4 and T3 which reflect the bioactive portion of thyroid hormone. This assessment can identify not only overt hyper-and hypothyroidism, but subtle sub-clinical manifestations of thyroid dysfunction.
• Reverse T3, levels of which can increase when peripheral conversion of T4 to active T3 is impaired. Peripheral thyroid imbalances may arise from nutrient shortages, heavy metal exposure, adrenal stress, enzyme deficiencies, and other chronic illness.
• Thyroid antibody levels, which help gauge autoimmune response and may reflect metabolic irregularities and hypothyroidism even when TSH and T4 levels appear normal. Thyroid antibody levels may rise in response to trauma, dysbiosis, inflammation (including thyroiditis) or progressive thyroid degeneration.
Ensuring healthy thyroid function is clinically essential. Optimal thyroid function may help safeguard against the pathogenesis of diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and depression. Thyroid hormones also play central metabolic roles in healthy sexual and reproductive function in both women and men. Because they are essential for IGF-1 production, thyroid hormones significantly affect lipid metabolism.
Hypersensitive thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH)
free serum thyroxine (fT4)
free triiodothyronine (fT3)
Total thyroxine (TT4)
anti-thyroid peroxidase antibodies fT4/fT3
Reverse T3 (rT3)