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Forum Name: Endocrinology Topics

Question: Normal TSH Fatigue, Joint Pain


 desperatepatient - Fri May 29, 2009 1:44 am

43Y Female
Weight gain of 10-15 kg over past year and a half.
Fatigue, lethargy, join pain, edema-like sensation in legs (but no swelling), thinning eyebrows, puffiness in eyes (between brow and eyelid), unable to concentrate, hazy, irritable
TSH 1.19 T4 13.15
Cholesterol, triglycerids, liver function, B12, Iron all within normal range, fasting glucose 104 but HB A1c normal (5.2)
weight seems to keep going up even though food consumption and activity levels are fairly stable
vaginal birth 3 years ago, gestational diabetes fully regulated with diet alone, retained placenta and manual lysis during delivery leading to blood loss of 900ml, no problem lactating, prolonged lactation, normal menstruation (started a few months postpartum), non-hormonal IUD

My regular doctor (family medicine) suggests that I need to eat less and workout more. While I definitely could work out more (I maintain a reasonable diet), I do not feel that this alone explains my rapid and continually increasing weight gain.

More importantly, I don't think it explains my other symptoms and I do not foresee them going away simply by exercising more. I am really suffering from this general feeling of fatigue, joint pain, edema-like and irritability. It significantly detracts from my quality of life and I am desperate to understand what is wrong and find a way to fix it.

I would very much appreciate any suggestions
 Lori575 - Tue Jun 02, 2009 12:51 pm

Hi,
Sounds familiar...my doctor swears my thyroid has nothing to do with not being able to lose anything lately because my levels are normal because of the synthroid.
And, I remember thinking that once my levels were "normal" I would feel so much better. Well, it's not true!
A great book to read is The Thyroid Diet by Mary J. Shomon. It explains so much. I do cardio 5-6 days a week and lift 2-3x a week AND eat great during the week. My problem is weekends. I eat whatever on the weekends. I used to be ok with that. Not anymore!!! I have horrible problems with joint/muscle pains still as well. The book mentions trying fish oil for joint pain, mood, and possible help with weight loss. It also talks about many other supplements. It's definitely worth the read. I got mine from Amazon for only $7. Another book I purchased and just started to read is "Your Hidden Food Allergies Are Making You Fat" by Roger Deutsch and Rudy Rivera M.D. It talks about food sensitivities; not necessarily allergies.

Good luck, hope you find what works for you.
 John Kenyon, CNA - Thu Jun 04, 2009 10:01 pm

User avatar Hello --

While your TSH was normal there can be some misleading findings in certain types of hypothyroidism, depending on the cause. Since there is a history in your family that's pretty extensive, you may not have the usual thyroiditis, and TSH may not adequately diagnose thyroid failure. Your symptoms are all, as you already know, completely consistent with hypothyroidism, and given that and your family history I strongly suspect some variant form of thyroid failure. I also agree an increase in dietary restriction and exercise is unlikely to change things much, since there is some sort of ongoing underlying process most likely causing all this. It may even be upstream of the thyroid itself, since heritable thyroid problems tend to often often originate higher in the endocrine system. For this reason I think it would be very beneficial for you to arrange a consult with an endocrinologist. If this leads to uncovering the source of the problem, great. If not, at least the specialist will have some insight into what paths ought to be explored instead of just suggesting you improve on your healthy lifestyle.

I hope this is helpful. Please follow up with us here as needed. Good luck to you.

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