A few days ago I got my lab results which were drawn 6 weeks after starting Methimazole 10mg daily. I'll start with my previous labs where I was diagnosed with Graves:
Free T3: 6.4 (2.0-4.4 normal)
Free T4: 1.54 (0.93-1.70 normal)
TSH: <0.013 (0.270-4.20 normal)
Free T3: 2.1
Free T4: 0.55
My endo called me on the phone with the results. He cut my Methimazole dose in half, to 5mg daily. He wants to re-check my labs, and see me, in another 6 weeks. I told him about feeling cold, and he said with some irony that I seemed to need to be a little thyrotoxic to be able to stay warm. I do think I do better with a lower TSH. In November 2011 my TSH was 0.271 (just barely normal) and I felt great and it was the first winter I had felt warm without bundling myself up inside the house in 30 years. My free T4 back then was 1.35. For some reason my endo didn't check my T3 much the past year, just the TSH and T4. But back in Nov 2011, I was on Levothyroxine for hypO.
In fact my TPO antibody for Hashimoto's thyroiditis was 259 (normal 0-35) back in January of 2009.
My TSI for Graves was 210 (normal 0-139) this past June.
I still don't have a solid grasp on what the thyroid labs mean, but I just need to study them now that I have them all since 2009 when I first was tested. Next time I go in, I'm going to ask my endo for the dates of when I started Levothyroxine and each adjustment, plus his notes on how I was feeling (since I have no memory!)
All I know is that I despise the Methimazole and the way it makes me feel. I haven't felt right since I started it. Yes, the elevated heart rate and palpitations are gone, but I feel generally worse. Fatigued, poor quality sleep, drowsiness, needing 10-11 hours of sleep a night. I can't see staying on this drug for years in hopes of a remission. I told my endo I would rather have my thyroid out. He favors RAI, I favor surgery. He's worried about damage to my vocal cords, etc., I'm worried about radiation. He did say, “well, show me a study that ties RAI to head and neck cancers, because I've never seen a correlation.” But I will do what I feel is right for me after I talk to an RAI specialist and and a thyroid surgeon–when the time for making a decision comes.
Meanwhile, I'm sitting here typing, in a sweater, with a blanket around me, thermostat at 69 and my hand are ice cold. It's like that at work, too, without benefit of a blanket.
Thanks for listening. I know so many of you have had much worse struggles, my being cold and tired doesn't seem like much, but it's not a great quality of life for me, especially since the Seattle area is cold much of the year. Hard to avoid the cold, but most people here aren't that bothered by it.