The test detects the amount of TSH, often known as “thyroid stimulating hormone,” in your blood. The pituitary gland in your brain creates TSH. The thyroid is instructed by this gland to produce and release thyroid hormones into the blood.
What Is TSH Test?
To determine whether your thyroid gland is functioning properly, a TSH test is performed. It can inform you if it’s hyperthyroidism- or hypothyroidism-related (hypothyroidism). The test can also identify thyroid conditions even in the absence of symptoms. An untreated thyroid condition might have negative effects on one’s health.
Simply taking blood from your body is all that is necessary for the TSH test. After that, a lab will examine the blood. Any hour of the day is appropriate to conduct this test. There is no need to prepare (such as overnight fasting). Other than a minor prick from the needle in your arm, you shouldn’t experience any pain. You might have some minor bruises.
High TSH Levels
According to the American Thyroid Association, TSH levels normally range between 0.4 to 4.0 milliunits per litre (mU/L). The top limit often falls between 4 and 5. T3 T4 TSh test is done, however ranges will differ between laboratories. You may have an underactive thyroid if your level is higher than this.
Low TSH Levels
It’s also possible that the test results reflect an overactive thyroid and TSH levels that are lower than usual. This might be brought on by:
- Graves’ illness, in which the thyroid is attacked by the body’s immunological system
- Your body contains too much iodine
- Excessive doses of thyroid hormone therapy
- Too much of a naturally occurring thyroid hormone supplement
You might have a lower-than-average reading if you’re using drugs like steroids, dopamine, or opioid painkillers (like morphine). Additionally, taking biotin (a B vitamin supplement) may result in erroneously decreased TSH levels.
The TSH thyroid test is typically not the only one used to identify thyroid problems. When deciding whether you require thyroid medication or not, other tests, such as the free T3, free T4, reverse T3, and anti-TPO antibody, are frequently utilised as well.
Taking a synthetic thyroid hormone in pill form everyday is the typical course of treatment for an underactive thyroid. Your hormone levels will return to normal as a result of this treatment, and you might start to feel less tired and lose weight.
After two or three months, your doctor will check your TSH levels to make sure you’re receiving the proper medicine dosage. They will continue to evaluate your TSH level annually when they are certain you are taking the right amount to ensure it is normal.
There are a number of remedies available if your thyroid is overactive:
- Iodine-131 to slow down thyroid function
- Anti-thyroid drugs to stop it from creating too many hormones
- Beta blockers to lower a fast heartbeat brought by by elevated thyroid levels
- Thyroid removal through surgery (this is less common)
In case you have an overactive thyroid, your doctor could additionally monitor your TSH levels on a regular basis.