Thyroid Function Test
So we continue with our blog on different health tests and profiles. We have already covered “Diabetes Profile” in our previous blog post. Today we talk about Thyroid Function Test or Thyroid Profile – it’s importance, why it is needed in India and what it really is.
1 in 10 Indians suffer from Thyroid disorder . According to a projection from various studies on thyroid disease, it has been estimated that about 42 million people in India suffer from thyroid diseases . It is double of developed world.
Studies say Cities located in the in-land regions of India (Delhi, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Bangalore and Hyderabad) reported a significantly higher prevalence of hypothyroidism than those (Mumbai, Chennai and Goa) in the coastal areas. The prevalence of hypothyroidism was the highest in the age-group of 46 to 54 years and the lowest in that of 18 to 35 years.
As there are different types of thyroid conditions hence the symptoms are also different. Following are some of the symptoms of thyroid diseases
- Fatigue after sleeping 8 to 10 hours.
- Weight gain or the inability to lose weight.
- Hormone imbalances such as PMS, irregular periods, infertility and low sex drive.
- Mood issues such as mood swings, anxiety or depression.
- Nervousness and tremor
- Memory issues such as brain fog, poor concentration or poor memory.
- Muscle pain, joint pain, carpal tunnel syndrome
- Cold hands and feet, feeling cold when others are not
- Dry or cracking skin, brittle nails and excessive hair loss.
- Neck swelling, snoring or hoarse voice.
- Feeling bloated: Fluid retention is often a sign of an underactive thyroid gland.
- Racing heartbeat: An increased heart rate and palpitations can be symptoms of hyperthyroidism.
Please remember that none of these symptoms is only specific for thyroid disease. They may be caused by a number of different conditions and normal states. Your Family Doctor may ask you to go for a laboratory tests to evaluate the function of your thyroid gland if you have these symptoms.
TFT (Thyroid Function Test) is done to determine the activity of thyroid gland and check for either hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid gland) or hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid).
- Women are more likely to get Thyroid problems than men.
- Everyone over the age of 40 years should get a TFT done every year.
The thyroid gland uses iodine from food to make two thyroid hormones: Thyroxine (T4) and Triiodothyronine (T3). The amount of T4 produced by the thyroid gland is controlled by another hormone, which is made in the pituitary gland located at the base of the brain, called thyroid stimulating hormone (abbreviated TSH). The thyroid gland stores these thyroid hormones and releases them as they are needed. There are three major tests to determine the activity of Thyroid Gland:
TSH: Best way to test thyroid function is to measure the TSH level in a blood sample. A high TSH level indicates that the thyroid gland is failing – primary hypothyroidism. If TSH level is low, it usually indicates that the person has an overactive thyroid that is producing too much thyroid hormone -hyperthyroidism
T3: This test is useful to diagnosis hyperthyroidism or to determine the severity of the hyperthyroidism.
T4: The free T4 fraction is the most important to determine how the thyroid is functioning. The test to determine is also called FT4 (Free T4) or FTI (Free T4 Index). Individuals who have hyperthyroidism will have an elevated FT4 or FTI, whereas patients with hypothyroidism will have a low level of FT4 or FTI.
|TSH||0.5-6 uU/ml||> 6 uU/ml||<0.5 uUml|
|T4||4.6-12 ug/dl||<4.6 ug/dl||> 12 ug/dl|
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