Thyroid function testDr.Nikit MahaleLast Updated on 24th January 2022
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What is the thyroid function test used for?
Thyroid function tests are typically performed to determine whether the thyroid gland is functioning normally. This is mostly used to distinguish between an underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) and an overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism).
People with certain diseases are at a higher risk of thyroid disorders and are frequently advised to have thyroid function testing every year. These are the conditions:
- Diabetes type 1
- Celiac disease
- Addison’s disease
- Down syndrome
- Turner syndrome
Thyroid function tests can also be performed on others, like
- People with hypothyroidism should have their thyroid replacement therapy monitored.
- People being treated for hyperthyroidism should have their thyroid gland function checked.
- Newborns for thyroid gland disorders that are hereditary.
What is included in the thyroid function test?
The thyroid function test includes a set of blood tests to determine T3 and T4 levels in the body, and whether TSH levels are normal. If your thyroid is underactive or overactive, this test will disclose it. After the samples from your thyroid blood test have been collected, an endocrinologist will contact you for a consultation.
The following are some of the findings of the investigation:
- Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone Test: Having a normal TSH level is critical since it determines whether or not your biological functions are regulated. A thyroid expert will prescribe hypothyroidism medicine for high TSH treatment based on the results of your thyroid exam.
- The FT3 and FT4 tests are typically taken jointly. An endocrinologist will be able to assess your symptoms and prescribe the appropriate thyroid disease medication based on the T3 and T4 levels in your body.
Procedure for thyroid function test
- A blood draw is done at a laboratory or at a doctor’s office
- You’ll be asked to sit in a comfortable chair or lie down on a cot or gurney when you come for the exam
- You’ll be asked to roll up one sleeve if you’re wearing long sleeves
- To make the veins bulge with blood, a technician or nurse will tighten a rubber band tightly around your upper arm
- A needle will be inserted under the skin and into the vein once the technician has discovered an appropriate vein
- When the needle punctures your skin, you may feel a sharp prick
- Your blood will be collected in test tubes by the technician and sent to a laboratory for analysis
- When the technician has collected the required amount of blood for the tests, they will remove the needle and apply pressure to the puncture wound until it stops bleeding. The technician will next cover the incision with a tiny bandage.
With MFine, you can avail a Thyroid Function test at home and get samples collected from your doorstep.
NOTE: You should be able to resume your normal daily routine right away.
How to prepare for the thyroid function test?
- Thyroid function tests typically require little to no preparation.
- You are not required to fast before the blood test. It also doesn’t matter if you take your thyroid medication right before the blood test.
- Inform your doctor if you are taking any medications, as some can affect test results and how they are interpreted.
- It is also vital to include any X-ray tests that use a particular contrast dye, as this may contain iodine, which can interfere with the results. Thyroid chemicals (hormones) levels alter during pregnancy, so inform your doctor if you are pregnant at the time of the test.
Things to consider after the thyroid function test is complete
TSH, T3, and T4 tests are included in thyroid function testing.
It is imperative to note that these tests aren’t intended to definitively diagnose an illness, and abnormal results may mean a lot of other things. But they may cause your doctor to schedule more tests to rule out a thyroid disorder.
Normal Ranges found on the internet are estimates and may differ from one doctor to the next. It is crucial to realize that aberrant values don’t always indicate the presence of a thyroid disease, as each test can be influenced by a variety of factors.
*What types of infection can the thyroid function test detect?
Thyroid function tests are typically performed to determine whether the thyroid gland is functioning normally. This is mostly used to distinguish between an underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) and an overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism) (hyperthyroidism). However, it cannot detect any infections.
How much does the thyroid function test cost?*
A thyroid function test includes 3 tests – TSH, T3, and T4 levels.
The panel can cost anywhere between Rs.399 to Rs.699, depending on your location, time, and lab partner of choice.
*Disclaimer: The value varies based on location, time, and your preferred lab partner.
How long does it take to get the results for the thyroid function test?
You can expect to get the results for the thyroid function test within 24 to 48 hours after the sample is collected. However, in certain cases, depending on the location, medical advice, and preferred lab partner, it may take longer.
What do abnormal thyroid function test results indicate?
When a doctor is concerned about your thyroid hormone levels, he or she would usually prescribe broad screening tests like the T4 or thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) test. If the results are abnormal, your doctor will prescribe more tests to determine the source of the problem. Grave’s disease is most usually associated with abnormally high levels. This is an autoimmune condition that is linked to hyperthyroidism. Your TBG binding capacity can be low if your T3 level is high.
TBG levels that are abnormally low indicate a renal disease or a lack of protein in the body. TBG levels that are abnormally high indicate a high quantity of estrogen in the body. Pregnancy, estrogen-rich diets, obesity, and hormone replacement medication can all induce high estrogen levels.
Disclaimer: Please consult with your doctor for interpreting the test reports.
Is thyroid function a definitive test?
Thyroid laboratory testing is now quite sensitive and specific for thyroid problems, therefore if the tests come back normal, thyroid disease is unlikely and another explanation of symptoms should be investigated. A thyroid function test is, thus, a conclusive test.
How to read the thyroid function report?
The thyroxine test is also known as the T4 test. A high T4 level implies a thyroid that is hyperactive (hyperthyroidism). Anxiety, unintentional weight loss, tremors, and diarrhea are all symptoms.
The TSH test determines how much thyroid-stimulating hormone is present in your blood. TSH levels should be between 0.4 to 4.0 milli-international units of hormone per liter of blood (mIU/L) in a normal test.
If you have hypothyroidism symptoms and a TSH of more than 2.0 mIU/L, you’re at risk of developing hypothyroidism. Weight gain, weariness, sadness, and brittle hair and fingernails are among the symptoms. Thyroid function testing will most likely be performed every other year in the future. Your doctor may decide to start treating you with drugs like levothyroxine to relieve your symptoms.
|S.No.||Hormone Type||Normal Range|
The T3 test measures the amount of the hormone triiodothyronine in the body. If T4 and TSH tests indicate hyperthyroidism, it’s frequently ordered. If you have symptoms of an overactive thyroid gland but your T4 and TSH levels aren’t abnormal, a T3 test may be suggested.
T3 levels should be between 100 and 200 nanograms per deciliter of blood (ng/dL). Grave’s disease is most usually associated with abnormally high levels. This is an autoimmune condition that is linked to hyperthyroidism.
Why book a thyroid function test?
A thyroid function test can be booked for the following purposes:
- To determine how well your thyroid gland is working.
- To determine if the thyroid gland is underactive (hypothyroidism) or hyperactive (hyperthyroidism) (hyperthyroidism).
- To track the progress of thyroid replacement therapy.
- To rule out genetic thyroid problems in babies.
- To check thyroid gland function in those who have been diagnosed and treated for hyperthyroidism, and to monitor treatment for those who have hypothyroidism and are taking thyroid replacement medicine.
Thyroid function test at home – how does it work?
The thyroid function test is just like any other blood test. A lab technician visits your home when you book your tests through the MFine app. The lab technician first cleans the arm and then inserts a syringe into a vein. The required amount of blood is then taken into a vial. The lab technician then removes the needle and places cotton wool or a bandage over the prick.
Are there any risks involved with thyroid function?
Venipuncture, the process of drawing blood from the patient’s veins, is a process that requires very little time and effort. However, some days after venipuncture, you may have discomfort or bruising at the puncture site. An ice pack or an over-the-counter pain medication may help. However, if the area around the puncture site gets red or swollen, or if you experience a lot of discomforts, see your doctor right away. All of these symptoms could point to an infection.
What can affect the results for thyroid function?
Medications and disorders might affect thyroid function tests. Anything that could alter the results of your blood test should be disclosed to the person performing it, especially:
- Any significant ailment, such as a heart attack, an infection, a traumatic injury, severe liver disease, or kidney failure
- Any other medications you’re taking, such as steroid hormones, the contraceptive pill, anticonvulsants, lithium (used to treat certain mental disorders) and amiodarone (used to control irregular heartbeat), anti-inflammatory drugs, and any mineral or vitamin supplements, especially if the preparation contains iodine or biotin.
For further assistance
Frequently asked Questions| FAQ's
Is the lab technician coming for thyroid function sample collection vaccinated?
Yes. Our lab technicians are fully vaccinated. Further, they also ensure safety throughout by wearing a mask, gloves, and frequently sanitizing themselves during the sample collection.
Does MFine provide the interpretation for the results along with the reports?
Yes, MFine provides the interpretation for the result along with the reports. You can also avail a free medical consultation with a doctor to understand your reports accurately. The doctor will also advise and prescribe medicines, if required, based on the results.
How can I download my thyroid function test report?
- Login to MFine
- Go to your profile
- Click on Attachment and Reports
- Click on Lab Report
- Download the report
Are there any discount offers running on the thyroid function test?
Usually you can avail up to 50% discount on thyroid function through MFine. However, the discount and test price may vary based on lab partner and location.
Who is more likely to suffer thyroid issues?
Thyroid disorders are more likely to occur in people who have certain medical illnesses. Addison’s illness, Turner syndrome, Type 1 diabetes, Down’s syndrome, and Coeliac disease are examples of such disorders.
Is it possible to have normal thyroid function tests and still have thyroid symptoms?
Yes. It’s critical to understand that normal thyroid function test results imply the presence of a thyroid issue. TSH levels between 0.4 and 4.0mIU/L are considered normal by most clinicians. If you’re still having thyroid issues, you could have hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.
What are the early indicators of thyroid issues?
Thyroid Issues: Early Warning Signs
- Challenges in the Digestive System: If you acquire hyperthyroidism, you may have very loose stools
- Mood Disorders
- Unexplained Fluctuations in Weight
- Skin Issues
- Difficulty Dealing With Temperature Changes
- Vision Problems
- Loss of Hair
- Memory Issues
At what age does thyroid disease appear?
Men, women, newborns, teenagers, and the elderly can all be affected by thyroid disease. It might be present at birth (hypothyroidism) or develop as you become older (often after menopause in women).
What happens if your TSH level is too high?
If your TSH levels are abnormally high, you may have hypothyroidism or an underactive thyroid. This is because it means your pituitary gland is creating more TSH to encourage your thyroid to make thyroid hormone.
Is it possible to lower TSH levels with exercise?
No, exercise will not cause your thyroid to create more thyroid hormone or help you to recover from your condition. Changing one’s workout routine or nutrition will have no impact on the progression of an autoimmune disease.
Disclaimer: The content is uniquely informative and is meant for educational use. Kindly use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified or registered healthcare provider.