Thyroid hormones. TSH analysis: normal, increased or decreased
Analysis for thyroid hormones can be prescribed by different specialists. Since this organ affects the normal functioning of many processes in the body. Despite its small size – up to 4 cm in height – the thyroid gland affects intellectual and puberty, growth and weight, the digestive and cardiac systems. Both mental and physical health of a person equally depend on hormone production. According to statistics from the World Health Organization, it is women who are more susceptible to thyroid gland diseases.
Essential Thyroid Hormones
The organs that produce hormones are called endocrine. The thyroid gland is one such organ. Its main function is the production of two types of hormones:
Hormones containing iodine (glandular endocrine system);
Hormones that affect the absorption of calcium (aglandular endocrine system).
The first type of iodine-containing hormones is divided into triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4). The second type includes thyrocalcitonin. Growth, metabolism, sexual development, and even the hematopoietic system of an organism depend on the synthesis of the hormone T3 and the hormone T4. The normal functioning of these hormones, their balance, production and interaction is regulated by thyroid-stimulating hormone – TSH. At the same time, the volume of TSH directly depends on the amount of produced T3 and T4. As soon as their number increases significantly, the level of TSH decreases. That is why the analysis of TSH is most often carried out together with the analysis of T3 and T4.
Symptoms of Thyroid Dysfunction
The effect of hormones produced in the thyroid gland on the body is so great that the consequence of their imbalance is immediately noticeable. Many experts immediately prescribe an examination with an endocrinologist as soon as they notice the first signs of metabolic disorders or development.
In children, the consequences of insufficient or excessive production of hormones can be:
Overweight or underweight;
Lack of puberty by age;
Lag in growth and development;
In general, in adults, the symptoms of hormonal imbalance are similar:
The absence or failure of menstruation in women;
Soreness and muscle atrophy;
Dementia in the elderly;
Metabolism and weight gain.
As you can see, the symptoms can be different and depend on age and gender. However, it should be remembered that each organism is individual. In some cases, the first signs of thyroid disease may be hidden. Drowsiness, lack of appetite are not always suspicious. Therefore, an examination by an endocrinologist should be part of a planned annual examination.
Analysis of TSH will help to identify disorders in the production of thyroid hormones. However, this type of research must be carefully prepared. The level of the hormone in the blood varies significantly depending on the time of day. Its peak concentration reaches at night. This is due to the general state of rest at this time. That is why a violation of the regime, frequent wakefulness at night can lead to deviations in the production of TSH.
It is necessary to take the analysis in the morning, in the region of 8-10 hours. Before this, you should not eat for 12 hours. Only a small amount of water without gas is allowed. Three days before the test, it is worth stopping the use of alcohol, intense physical activity. It is also necessary to exclude iodine-containing foods and medicines. When undergoing hormonal therapy, this issue should be discussed with a doctor. Typically, a TSH test is prescribed 3 months after you stop taking hormonal drugs.
TSH level: norm and deviations
The hormone content in the blood varies with age. So, the TSH norm in a newborn is 1.1-17 mU / l, and in an adult – 0.4-4.0 mU / l. Any deviations from the normal state signal the occurrence of pathological processes in the body. If TSH is elevated, this may indicate the presence of hypothyroidism – a deficiency of thyroid hormones. The disease is accompanied by low body temperature, lethargy, hair loss. Of the most disturbing signs, apnea can be distinguished – malfunctioning in breathing during sleep.
The following factors also influence the increase in the amount of TSH:
Pituitary or thyroid disease.
In the event that an increased level of TSH is associated with a lack of the hormone T4, iodine-containing drugs or synthesized thyroxine are prescribed.
If the level of TSH is low, then the cause may be:
Frequent severe stress, sleep disturbances;
Hormone treatment without a doctor’s prescription;
Deviations in the pituitary gland.
Restoring hormonal balance in the body is a serious treatment that requires observation by a doctor. The results of the analysis are considered only together with external examination and palpation of the thyroid gland. If abnormalities are observed, then read the article by the endocrinologist on the treatment of the thyroid gland.