Your metabolism speed is controlled by hormones which are made by the thyroid. There are two types of thyroid hormones secreted into the bloodstream, triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4). These hormones control and regulate the speed that your body cells work. If you have an imbalance then these cells will be working too fast or too slow, meaning that you could experience changes to your overall mood, energy levels and weight.
Who is this test for?
Our thyroid health check is for men and women with symptoms of hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism or who have a family history of thyroid disease.
Hypothyroidism is mostly seen in women between the ages of 40 - 50 and is seen in women ten times more often than men. It often occurs during the menopausal years and symptoms are often ignored during the early stages by both patients and doctors if the patient is at this age.
How does the test help?
Our at-home thyroid test will provide a clear picture of how your thyroid is performing and whether you may require treatment for thyroid-related issues, which are relatively common in the population. Our doctors will review your results and where required, provide a bespoke recommendation of treatment.
- Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) - TSH is produced by the pituitary gland, located below the brain. When TSH is released, it stimulates the thyroid gland to produce triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4). These hormones regulate the body’s metabolism.
- Free Thyroxine (FT4) - FT4 is the main hormone secreted by the thyroid gland. Thyroxine is the inactive form which the liver and kidneys convert to its active form, triiodothyronine. The hormone assists with the metabolic rate of the body, including, increasing pulse rate and stronger heartbeat and brain maturation.
- Free Triiodothyronine (FT3) - FT3 is the active form of the thyroid hormone, thyroxine. The hormone assists with the metabolic rate of the body, including, increasing pulse rate and stronger heartbeat and brain maturation.
The Association of Clinical Biochemistry, the British Thyroid Association and the British Thyroid Foundation, state in the UK Guidelines for the Use of Thyroid Function Tests that, "The prevalence of spontaneous hypothyroidism is 1-2%" Approximately 2 in every 100 people. But some doctors feel that the rate is much higher than this.
Dr Thierry Hertoghe, President of the International Hormone Society, which is the third largest hormone society in the world, with over 2,300 physicians as members, states that many studies are now showing that people with levels of thyroid hormones (T4 and T3) in the lower fifth, quarter, third or half of the reference range and levels within the upper fifth, quarter, third or half of the TSH reference range have an increased risk of disease or even mortality. He states that, in his opinion, "Thyroid deficiency is 20% to 50% (20 - 50 people in every 100) of a standard population."
Symptoms of hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism include:
- Weight gain
- Slow movements, thought and speech
- Pins and needles
- Loss of libido
- Dry/gritty eyes
- Hoarse voice
- Difficulty swallowing
- Hair loss especially outer third of eyebrows
- Dry skin
- Muscle and joint pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Loss of appetite
When should I take the test?
So long as you are not feeling unwell, then you can take the test at any time. If unwell then wait until you are fully recovered before taking the test, to ensure that the results are accurate.