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Thyroid (TSH) Test Service

$35

Check your level of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH). Help monitor your response to treatment for an underactive thyroid.

Fingerprick sample collection kit

Secured online results account

Customised results sharing

Pre-paid sample return

Laboratory analysis

Track your levels over time

Free shipping

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Fingerprick sample collection kit

Secured online results account

Customised results sharing

Pre-paid sample return

Laboratory analysis

Track your levels over time

Free shipping

Why should I take this test?

Check your thyroid health

Symptoms of an underactive thyroid are often confused with simply feeling tired and stressed due to a busy lifestyle. However, once detected many thyroid conditions can be easily treated.

Manage hypothyroidism

If you have been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid, your doctor may recommend keeping track of your TSH levels to help monitor your response to treatment.

This test is not suitable for use during pregnancy. There are thyroid conditions that will not necessarily be detected with this test. There are also other limitations and factors that affect test results. Read and consider all information on this page before making your own decision about whether this TSH test is right for you.

Our Prostate, Thyroid and Cholesterol test services are currently unavailable.

Please register your details – as soon as the test services become available we will be in contact.

Why should I take this test?

Check your thyroid health

Symptoms of an underactive thyroid are often confused with simply feeling tired and stressed due to a busy lifestyle. However, once detected many thyroid conditions can be easily treated.

Manage hypothyroidism

If you have been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid, your doctor may recommend keeping track of your TSH levels to help monitor your response to treatment.

This test is not suitable for use during pregnancy. There are thyroid conditions that will not necessarily be detected with this test. There are also other limitations and factors that affect test results. Read and consider all information on this page before making your own decision about whether this TSH test is right for you.
What is the TSH test?

Thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) is produced by the pituitary gland in your brain. The pituitary gland tells your thyroid gland to make and release thyroid hormones (T4 and T3) into your bloodstream.

The thyroid is a small gland in your neck producing hormones that control your metabolism – how your body uses energy. It affects a number of crucial body functions, including breathing, heart rate, nervous system, body weight, muscle strength, menstrual cycles, body temperature, and cholesterol levels.

A thyroid problem may disrupt your hormone balance and have a major impact on your health and wellbeing.

The TSH test is the first line test to assess your thyroid function and is most commonly used to diagnose an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism).

It’s a simple, at-home fingerprick blood test that measures the amount of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) in your blood and compares your result to the expected TSH levels. It can help indicate if there is a problem with your thyroid function.

You can use this test to:

  • Check for thyroid disorders
  • Monitor your response to treatment for hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid)

In a small number of cases individuals with a healthy TSH level may have a thyroid condition caused by thyroid cancer or a pituitary gland disorder. Your doctor may recommend additional tests to further investigate the cause of your thyroid problem. To learn more, visit the Your Thyroid and Clinical Information sections.

HOW IT WORKS

Our blood test service is one small way to make your life easier. There’s no need to squeeze a visit to the pathology collection centre into your day and no needles to worry about. We only need three spots of blood on a specialised collection card. Our dried blood spot test for TSH levels has been validated and compared to traditional pathology methods. See our Clinical Information tab for more information on this test.

  1. 1. Simply order your tests online and take a fingerprick sample of blood at home, at a time that suits you.
  2. 2. Return your samples to us by post, and our quality controlled laboratory will process your results.
  3. 3. Your results will be delivered via our secure website within a week and you can share with your doctor or others as you wish.

The thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) test is the initial test of choice used to investigate if your thyroid gland is working the way it should. It is the most useful test for diagnosing an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) and for monitoring the correct dose of medication when receiving treatment for hypothyroidism.

A TSH level outside of the expected healthy range may indicate a thyroid problem. A high TSH level occurs when the thyroid is not making enough thyroid hormones. This may be due to an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), or can occur when a person on treatment for hypothyroidism is not getting enough medication. In rare cases a tumour in the pituitary may increase TSH. If the TSH is low, the thyroid is making excess thyroid hormones and may indicate an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism).

In some cases, an individual with hypothyroidism may not return a high test result.

If your TSH level is below the expected range you may have hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid). If you do have hyperthyroidism you are likely to have symptoms such as weight loss and a racing pulse.

In rare cases you may have no symptoms of hyperthyroidism and have low TSH levels. This condition is called subclinical hyperthyroidism, which mostly corrects itself without treatment. Your doctor may recommend further tests to confirm your diagnosis and to investigate its causes. Your relevant history, signs and symptoms in addition to your blood test result are taken into consideration by your doctor at the time of assessing your thyroid function.

If you have an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) and you are monitoring your response to treatment to normalise your TSH levels, and your TSH is below the recommended concentration, speak to your doctor to see if your medication needs adjusting.

The MyHealthTest TSH test report contains:

  • Your test result for TSH
  • An indication if it is outside the expected range
  • Links to key information to help you understand your result

Here is an example report

To successfully identify the cause of your thyroid problem, it’s important to be aware of factors that may affect your TSH results, to reduce unnecessary concerns and stress.

Pregnancy: this test should not be used during pregnancy. Please go directly to your doctor if you have concerns about your thyroid.

Stress and illness: stress or severe illness have impact on thyroid function. It is very difficult in association with a major illness to interpret thyroid function tests. Therefore, we recommend you do not use this test within 2-3 weeks of being unwell, such as the flu or significant fever. It is recommended that you consult with your doctor.

Incorrect sample collection: it’s important to follow the sample collection guidelines carefully, so we can ensure the accuracy of your test result. If the dried blood spots are not large enough, you may be asked to repeat the test.

FRONT OF CARD

BACK OF CARD

Different laboratories: blood test results from different laboratories can and do vary. This is because different laboratories may use different methods of testing. This should be considered if you’re comparing your MyHealthTest results to those from other labs. For more information please read our frequently asked questions.

Always consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns about thyroid testing or using this test service.

It’s important to make your own decision about whether this TSH test is right for you. The TSH test is a first line indicator of a thyroid problem and flags results that indicate if you should be speaking with your doctor about your thyroid.

If your level of TSH is out of the expected range, this will be marked on your results. Take these results to your healthcare provider to guide you through the next steps to best manage your thyroid health based on your individual circumstances.

If you have already been diagnosed with a thyroid problem and are on medication, your doctor may recommend you monitor your TSH to see your response to treatment, and to adjust your dose if needed. In consultation with your doctor, this at-home fingerprick test is an alternative way for you to check your TSH level over time.

It’s important to note that a TSH within the healthy range does not always rule out hypothyroidism or some thyroid conditions such as thyroid cancer and disorders of the hypothalamus or the pituitary gland.

If you would like to learn more about your thyroid please read the Your Thyroid section. You can also visit the Australian Thyroid Foundation or Thyroid WA.

This TSH test is not suitable for the diagnosis of thyroid cancer, or for a pituitary or a hypothalamic disorder. It is not recommended during pregnancy or for individuals under 18 years of age.

The TSH test should not be used:

  • In diagnosing
  •      - Pituitary disorder

         - Hypothalamic disorders

         - Thyroid cancer

  • During pregnancy
  • For individuals under 18 years of age

The TSH test is a measure of your thyroid stimulating hormone to help determine if your thyroid is functioning properly. If your test results aren’t within the expected range, or if you are on medication for an underactive thyroid, your doctor may recommend more frequent tests. Using our subscription service is an easy way to track your TSH levels over time.

Regular TSH testing is recommended for individuals at higher risk of developing a thyroid problem and for individuals undergoing hormone replacement therapy (e.g.Thyroxine) for hypothyroidism . Perhaps you want to check your TSH levels every 6 to 12 months or you may be monitoring your response to treatment every 6 to 8 weeks?

Subscribing to our test service allows you to track how your TSH levels are changing over time. You will also have the option to print or share your results with your doctor or whomever you choose.

You simply select how often you want to do the test. We will send you an email when we have processed your payment and dispatch. You will receive your next collection kit straight to your door at the time you are due for your next check.

If you subscribe to regular tests, you'll save more than 15% OFF the single test service price. A minimum purchase of two test services is required to take advantage of the subscription savings. Conditions apply, please read our frequently asked questions and Terms and Conditions.

Facts:
  • Almost 1 in 6 Australians has a thyroid problem
  • Hypothyroidism affects 10 times more women than men
  • The most common cause of hypothyroidism in Australia is Hashimoto’s autoimmune disease, it’s commonly seen from middle age onwards
  • Hypothyroidism, goitre (thyroid enlargement) and pregnancy-related problems can be a result of Iodine deficiency

Your thyroid is a small butterfly-shaped gland, located near the base of the throat just below the Adam’s apple and in front of your wind pipe. The thyroid is part of the endocrine system and is responsible for the production of the hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). These are needed to regulate your metabolism and energy production.

The pituitary gland (which is in your brain), keeps hormones in check. It is the gland that releases thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) which tells your thyroid to make and release the T4 and T3 hormones into your blood.

If the thyroid gland doesn’t work properly a number of body functions are affected, including breathing, heart rate, nervous system (thought processes, behaviour e.g. depression), body weight, muscle strength, menstrual cycles, body temperature, and cholesterol levels.

Source: https://www.webmd.com

You may have a thyroid disorder when your thyroid hormone production becomes unbalanced, releasing too much or too little of the hormone into your blood.

Symptoms indicating a thyroid problem vary widely from person to person, they tend to develop gradually and are often confused with other conditions or even ‘normal’ signs of ageing.

There are three common thyroid conditions:

Hypothyroidism: an underactive thyroid gland occurs when your thyroid is not producing enough thyroid hormone and your TSH levels may be high. This means your body uses energy more slowly than it should and it can leave you feeling tired and worn-out. The most common cause of hypothyroidism in Australia is Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

Hyperthyroidism: an overactive thyroid gland occurs when your thyroid produces too much hormone and your TSH levels may be low. Your metabolism runs faster than it should, increasing your heart rate and leaving you more tired during ordinary activities. The most common cause of hyperthyroidism in Australia is Graves' autoimmune disease

Thyroid Nodules: are an abnormal growth (lumps) of the thyroid gland cells and increase with age. Most nodules are benign (non-cancerous) but some can be malignant (cancerous).

Individuals at higher risk of developing a thyroid problem include:

Hypothyroidism is one of the most undiagnosed, misdiagnosed, and unrecognised health problems in the world. Symptoms and signs develop gradually, vary widely from person to person and become more severe as your metabolism continues to slow down. Often symptoms are mistaken for “normal” ageing, mental health issues or menopause. Signs and symptoms may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Weight gain
  • Slow heart rate
  • Depression
  • Frequent or/and heavy menstrual periods
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Cold intolerance
  • Hair loss
  • Constipation
  • Sleep problems
  • Brain fogginess
  • Anxiety
  • High cholesterol

The good news is once an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) is diagnosed, it is often easily treated. People with hypothyroidism are often prescribed medication (thyroxine) to replace the thyroid hormones.

Medication levels vary between individuals and can also change over time. Your doctor may recommend checking your TSH levels more often to check or adjust your medication dose when hypothyroidism is being treated. Retesting before 6 weeks after changing your medication dosage is generally not recommended.

For more information about thyroid conditions, speak to your doctor and visit the Australian Thyroid Foundation or Thyroid WA

Hyperthyroidism is less common than hypothyroidism and tends to run in families. The most common signs of hyperthyroidism are:

  • feeling anxious
  • feeling the heat
  • heart palpitations
  • feeling tired
  • weight loss

Other signs can include:

  • an enlarged thyroid (goitre)
  • breathlessness
  • pop-eyed appearance
  • eye problems
  • increased appetite
  • tremor
  • sweating
  • changes in bowel habits
  • changes on menstrual patterns
  • thin skin
  • fine and brittle hair

It is important to establish the cause of hyperthyroidism for appropriate management.

This test will not give a diagnosis of hyperthyroidism. Your doctor will arrange for a number of tests if you have symptoms of an over-active thyroid.

Hyperthyroidism medication and surgery can sometimes lead to hypothyroidism and early diagnosis is essential since, if left untreated, this may lead to heart disease, bone structure disorders or eye problems.

What people are saying about MyHealthTest

“I decided to take the test because I was curious to see how it works. Thankfully I did! as my results highlighted a thyroid problem and I am now managing this with my GP.”

Hannah, ACT



"A friend told me about MyHealthTest, and although I didn't think it would show much as I'm generally healthy (.. at least I think so) it turns out I got quite a surprise. The MyHealthTest showed my thyroid levels ("TSH" .. I've learned all about that now) those levels were high. So that test result gave me the little push I needed to go and discuss them with my regular doctor and we did some deeper tests and it turns out I have a thyroid condition - hashimoto's! .. and I thought my general feeling a bit tired was normal. Without this easy test from MyHealthTest I probably would not have found out about this for quite some time - so THANK YOU MyHealthTest, for both the easy test, and the information with the results to help me discuss with my doctor. I really do feel a whole lot better now - both the comfort of knowing, and also because the treatment has made a world of difference to that tired feeling."

Nicholas, VIC

MyHealthTest’s fingerprick blood testing service is reliable and accurate.

Research studies have shown TSH levels can be reliably measured from dried blood spots. Our dried blood spot sampling method has also been validated and is comparable to testing with traditional whole blood samples (e.g. having blood taken at a local pathology centre).

Find out more about dried blood spot testing and our state-of-the-art Australian pathology lab.

Your TSH levels can be affected by extreme stress and illness, if you take a sample incorrectly or when comparing your results to different laboratories. We recommend you read the TSH Testing section for more information. Your healthcare provider will take into account your medical history, signs and symptoms and will address any concerns at the time of assessing your TSH results, further information for clinicians is provided in the Clinical Information section.

Our TSH test service is currently available online from our webstore.

You may purchase this service for your own use or for an individual you care for i.e. another adult you are the authorised carer for.

Pathology results from different laboratories can and do vary. This should be considered if comparing to results from other labs. For more information click here to see a video explaining why this occurs https://www.patientpower.info.

MyHealthTest test uses dried blood spot samples using laboratory techniques which differ from traditional whole blood testing. The MyHealthTest test results have been validated and compared to traditional testing to ensure that you are given an accurate and reliable result.

If your TSH test result is out of the expected healthy range this will be indicated on your report.

An example report can be found here

If your TSH level is below the expected level you may have hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid). People with hyperthyroidism usually have symptoms such as weight loss and a high heart rate. If this is the case your doctor will likely conduct additional tests.

In some cases, an individual with hypothyroidism may not return a high test result. Your relevant history, signs and symptoms, in addition to your blood test, are taken into consideration at the time of assessing if you may have a thyroid problem. If you have any concerns, please see your doctor.

If you are on medication for hypothyroidism you should take your medication as usual on the day you take your Thyroid (TSH) test.

Eating as usual and taking your medication will not interfere with your test result.

This test is not recommended to be used during pregnancy or for individuals under 18 years of age. If you feel unwell or have concerns about your thyroid, please go directly to your doctor.

This test is not suitable for:

  • Detecting a pituitary disorder
  • Detecting a hypothalamic disorder
  • Detecting cancer of the thyroid

If you have further questions, please view our general frequently asked questions

The following information is intended for clinicians, and consumers who want more details about this test.

MyHealthTest’s fingerprick blood test for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) was developed to improve the access and convenience of blood testing for individuals finding it difficult to present for blood tests as planned, particularly for those with constraints relating to time, geography or impaired physical ability on getting to the doctor.

This test is an accurate tool for detecting most primary hypothyroid disorders and for monitoring and assessing the success of thyroid replacement therapy for hypothyroidism under medical supervision. A low level does not necessarily indicate a hyperthyroid disorder, further testing may be required.

The test may also be used under medical supervision for monitoring TSH levels for individuals at a higher risk of developing thyroid disease or those undergoing treatment for hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid).

This test is the first line screening tool to identify individuals that may have a thyroid problem. It is not suitable in the detection of the following:

  • Pituitary conditions (secondary hypothyroidism or secondary hyperthyroidism)
  • Conditions of the hypothalamus
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Diagnosing a thyroid disorder during pregnancy *
  • Individuals under 18 years of age *

* There is no consensus as to appropriate reference intervals for pregnant women or children under the age of 18 years.

This test service does not include additional tests sometimes used to further investigate a thyroid problem. These tests may be recommended by healthcare professionals after an initial TSH test. These include:

  • Thyroxine (fT4): used to confirm an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) diagnosis after an abnormal TSH and for monitoring thyroid replacement hormone therapy
  • Triiodothyronine (fT3): to confirm an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
  • Antithyroxin-binding globulin (anti-TBG): to diagnose autoimmune thyroid disease
  • Antithyroid peroxidase (anti-TPO): to diagnose autoimmune thyroid disease, in particular Hashimoto’s disease
  • Thyrotropin receptor antibody (TRAb): to diagnose autoimmune thyroid disease, in particular Graves' disease

MyHealthTest do not offer these additional tests, a discussion with a healthcare professional is needed to decide if further testing is required

Dried blood spot results obtained for TSH are comparable to serum samples collected by venepuncture and analysed by the same method (DELFIA time resolved fluorescence immunoassay), and demonstrate clinically acceptable precision to be used as a tool for both screening and in monitoring thyroid conditions.

Figure 1. TSH Bland Altman and Linear Regression analysis of serum vs DBS

Assay type: DELFIA time resolved fluorescence (Perkin Elmer)
Instrument: Victor2D (Perkin Elmer)
Sample:Fingerprick dried blood spot (DBS)
Measurand:TSH concentration in whole blood
Measurement Range:0.5 – 100 mIU/L
Limit of Quantitation:0.5 mIU/L
Reference Interval:0.5 - 4.2 mIU/L
Repeatability (within-run precision):0.8 mIU/L at 4.7 mIU/L; 7.1% at 27 mIU/L
Reproducibility (intermediate precision)*:14% at 4.7 mIU/L; 9.5% at 27 mIU/L
Stability:12 days
Interferences:
  • Heterophilic antibodies in the patient sample may occasionally interfere with the assay, falsely elevating the reported value
  • High or low haematocrit outside the expected range of 39 – 53% may affect the reported TSH value due to the nature of dried blood spots
Thermal stability:46°C for 2 days

*Further information on measurement uncertainty is available upon request.

Samples are stable for up to 12 days after collection and thermal stability testing confirmed that after holding dried blood spot samples at 46°C for two days there was no significant difference in the TSH values obtained.

When evaluating TSH results there are several factors that need to be considered by healthcare professionals.

Medications: the following common medications may affect results:

  • Birth control pill
  • Menopausal hormone therapy (HRT)
  • Antidepressants
  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs
  • Glucocorticosteroids
  • Herbs/supplements
  • Diabetes medication
  • Antiepileptic medications
  • Antiarrhythmic drugs containing amiodarone

This list is not exhaustive.

Medical conditions: certain conditions should be considered as they are known to affect TSH levels. These include: diabetes, pregnancy and menopause.

Other factors that do not physically change TSH levels but may interfere with the test results are included in the table above.

An example test report can be viewed here

What is the TSH test?

Thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) is produced by the pituitary gland in your brain. The pituitary gland tells your thyroid gland to make and release thyroid hormones (T4 and T3) into your bloodstream.

The thyroid is a small gland in your neck producing hormones that control your metabolism – how your body uses energy. It affects a number of crucial body functions, including breathing, heart rate, nervous system, body weight, muscle strength, menstrual cycles, body temperature, and cholesterol levels.

A thyroid problem may disrupt your hormone balance and have a major impact on your health and wellbeing.

The TSH test is the first line test to assess your thyroid function and is most commonly used to diagnose an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism).

It’s a simple, at-home fingerprick blood test that measures the amount of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) in your blood and compares your result to the expected TSH levels. It can help indicate if there is a problem with your thyroid function.

You can use this test to:

  • Check for thyroid disorders
  • Monitor your response to treatment for hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid)

In a small number of cases individuals with a healthy TSH level may have a thyroid condition caused by thyroid cancer or a pituitary gland disorder. Your doctor may recommend additional tests to further investigate the cause of your thyroid problem. To learn more, visit the Your Thyroid and Clinical Information sections.

HOW IT WORKS

Our blood test service is one small way to make your life easier. There’s no need to squeeze a visit to the pathology collection centre into your day and no needles to worry about. We only need three spots of blood on a specialised collection card. Our dried blood spot test for TSH levels has been validated and compared to traditional pathology methods. See our Clinical Information tab for more information on this test.

  1. 1. Simply order your tests online and take a fingerprick sample of blood at home, at a time that suits you.
  2. 2. Return your samples to us by post, and our quality controlled laboratory will process your results.
  3. 3. Your results will be delivered via our secure website within a week and you can share with your doctor or others as you wish.

The thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) test is the initial test of choice used to investigate if your thyroid gland is working the way it should. It is the most useful test for diagnosing an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) and for monitoring the correct dose of medication when receiving treatment for hypothyroidism.

A TSH level outside of the expected healthy range may indicate a thyroid problem. A high TSH level occurs when the thyroid is not making enough thyroid hormones. This may be due to an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), or can occur when a person on treatment for hypothyroidism is not getting enough medication. In rare cases a tumour in the pituitary may increase TSH. If the TSH is low, the thyroid is making excess thyroid hormones and may indicate an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism).

In some cases, an individual with hypothyroidism may not return a high test result.

If your TSH level is below the expected range you may have hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid). If you do have hyperthyroidism you are likely to have symptoms such as weight loss and a racing pulse.

In rare cases you may have no symptoms of hyperthyroidism and have low TSH levels. This condition is called subclinical hyperthyroidism, which mostly corrects itself without treatment. Your doctor may recommend further tests to confirm your diagnosis and to investigate its causes. Your relevant history, signs and symptoms in addition to your blood test result are taken into consideration by your doctor at the time of assessing your thyroid function.

If you have an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) and you are monitoring your response to treatment to normalise your TSH levels, and your TSH is below the recommended concentration, speak to your doctor to see if your medication needs adjusting.

The MyHealthTest TSH test report contains:

  • Your test result for TSH
  • An indication if it is outside the expected range
  • Links to key information to help you understand your result

Here is an example report

To successfully identify the cause of your thyroid problem, it’s important to be aware of factors that may affect your TSH results, to reduce unnecessary concerns and stress.

Pregnancy: this test should not be used during pregnancy. Please go directly to your doctor if you have concerns about your thyroid.

Stress and illness: stress or severe illness have impact on thyroid function. It is very difficult in association with a major illness to interpret thyroid function tests. Therefore, we recommend you do not use this test within 2-3 weeks of being unwell, such as the flu or significant fever. It is recommended that you consult with your doctor.

Incorrect sample collection: it’s important to follow the sample collection guidelines carefully, so we can ensure the accuracy of your test result. If the dried blood spots are not large enough, you may be asked to repeat the test.

FRONT OF CARD

BACK OF CARD

Different laboratories: blood test results from different laboratories can and do vary. This is because different laboratories may use different methods of testing. This should be considered if you’re comparing your MyHealthTest results to those from other labs. For more information please read our frequently asked questions.

Always consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns about thyroid testing or using this test service.

It’s important to make your own decision about whether this TSH test is right for you. The TSH test is a first line indicator of a thyroid problem and flags results that indicate if you should be speaking with your doctor about your thyroid.

If your level of TSH is out of the expected range, this will be marked on your results. Take these results to your healthcare provider to guide you through the next steps to best manage your thyroid health based on your individual circumstances.

If you have already been diagnosed with a thyroid problem and are on medication, your doctor may recommend you monitor your TSH to see your response to treatment, and to adjust your dose if needed. In consultation with your doctor, this at-home fingerprick test is an alternative way for you to check your TSH level over time.

It’s important to note that a TSH within the healthy range does not always rule out hypothyroidism or some thyroid conditions such as thyroid cancer and disorders of the hypothalamus or the pituitary gland.

If you would like to learn more about your thyroid please read the Your Thyroid section. You can also visit the Australian Thyroid Foundation or Thyroid WA.

This TSH test is not suitable for the diagnosis of thyroid cancer, or for a pituitary or a hypothalamic disorder. It is not recommended during pregnancy or for individuals under 18 years of age.

The TSH test should not be used:

  • In diagnosing
  •      - Pituitary disorder

         - Hypothalamic disorders

         - Thyroid cancer

  • During pregnancy
  • For individuals under 18 years of age

The TSH test is a measure of your thyroid stimulating hormone to help determine if your thyroid is functioning properly. If your test results aren’t within the expected range, or if you are on medication for an underactive thyroid, your doctor may recommend more frequent tests. Using our subscription service is an easy way to track your TSH levels over time.

Regular TSH testing is recommended for individuals at higher risk of developing a thyroid problem and for individuals undergoing hormone replacement therapy (e.g.Thyroxine) for hypothyroidism . Perhaps you want to check your TSH levels every 6 to 12 months or you may be monitoring your response to treatment every 6 to 8 weeks?

Subscribing to our test service allows you to track how your TSH levels are changing over time. You will also have the option to print or share your results with your doctor or whomever you choose.

You simply select how often you want to do the test. We will send you an email when we have processed your payment and dispatch. You will receive your next collection kit straight to your door at the time you are due for your next check.

If you subscribe to regular tests, you'll save more than 15% OFF the single test service price. A minimum purchase of two test services is required to take advantage of the subscription savings. Conditions apply, please read our frequently asked questions and Terms and Conditions.

Facts:
  • Almost 1 in 6 Australians has a thyroid problem
  • Hypothyroidism affects 10 times more women than men
  • The most common cause of hypothyroidism in Australia is Hashimoto’s autoimmune disease, it’s commonly seen from middle age onwards
  • Hypothyroidism, goitre (thyroid enlargement) and pregnancy-related problems can be a result of Iodine deficiency

Your thyroid is a small butterfly-shaped gland, located near the base of the throat just below the Adam’s apple and in front of your wind pipe. The thyroid is part of the endocrine system and is responsible for the production of the hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). These are needed to regulate your metabolism and energy production.

The pituitary gland (which is in your brain), keeps hormones in check. It is the gland that releases thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) which tells your thyroid to make and release the T4 and T3 hormones into your blood.

If the thyroid gland doesn’t work properly a number of body functions are affected, including breathing, heart rate, nervous system (thought processes, behaviour e.g. depression), body weight, muscle strength, menstrual cycles, body temperature, and cholesterol levels.

Source: https://www.webmd.com

You may have a thyroid disorder when your thyroid hormone production becomes unbalanced, releasing too much or too little of the hormone into your blood.

Symptoms indicating a thyroid problem vary widely from person to person, they tend to develop gradually and are often confused with other conditions or even ‘normal’ signs of ageing.

There are three common thyroid conditions:

Hypothyroidism: an underactive thyroid gland occurs when your thyroid is not producing enough thyroid hormone and your TSH levels may be high. This means your body uses energy more slowly than it should and it can leave you feeling tired and worn-out. The most common cause of hypothyroidism in Australia is Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

Hyperthyroidism: an overactive thyroid gland occurs when your thyroid produces too much hormone and your TSH levels may be low. Your metabolism runs faster than it should, increasing your heart rate and leaving you more tired during ordinary activities. The most common cause of hyperthyroidism in Australia is Graves' autoimmune disease

Thyroid Nodules: are an abnormal growth (lumps) of the thyroid gland cells and increase with age. Most nodules are benign (non-cancerous) but some can be malignant (cancerous).

Individuals at higher risk of developing a thyroid problem include:

Hypothyroidism is one of the most undiagnosed, misdiagnosed, and unrecognised health problems in the world. Symptoms and signs develop gradually, vary widely from person to person and become more severe as your metabolism continues to slow down. Often symptoms are mistaken for “normal” ageing, mental health issues or menopause. Signs and symptoms may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Weight gain
  • Slow heart rate
  • Depression
  • Frequent or/and heavy menstrual periods
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Cold intolerance
  • Hair loss
  • Constipation
  • Sleep problems
  • Brain fogginess
  • Anxiety
  • High cholesterol

The good news is once an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) is diagnosed, it is often easily treated. People with hypothyroidism are often prescribed medication (thyroxine) to replace the thyroid hormones.

Medication levels vary between individuals and can also change over time. Your doctor may recommend checking your TSH levels more often to check or adjust your medication dose when hypothyroidism is being treated. Retesting before 6 weeks after changing your medication dosage is generally not recommended.

For more information about thyroid conditions, speak to your doctor and visit the Australian Thyroid Foundation or Thyroid WA

Hyperthyroidism is less common than hypothyroidism and tends to run in families. The most common signs of hyperthyroidism are:

  • feeling anxious
  • feeling the heat
  • heart palpitations
  • feeling tired
  • weight loss

Other signs can include:

  • an enlarged thyroid (goitre)
  • breathlessness
  • pop-eyed appearance
  • eye problems
  • increased appetite
  • tremor
  • sweating
  • changes in bowel habits
  • changes on menstrual patterns
  • thin skin
  • fine and brittle hair

It is important to establish the cause of hyperthyroidism for appropriate management.

This test will not give a diagnosis of hyperthyroidism. Your doctor will arrange for a number of tests if you have symptoms of an over-active thyroid.

Hyperthyroidism medication and surgery can sometimes lead to hypothyroidism and early diagnosis is essential since, if left untreated, this may lead to heart disease, bone structure disorders or eye problems.

What people are saying about MyHealthTest

“I decided to take the test because I was curious to see how it works. Thankfully I did! as my results highlighted a thyroid problem and I am now managing this with my GP.”

Hannah, ACT



"A friend told me about MyHealthTest, and although I didn't think it would show much as I'm generally healthy (.. at least I think so) it turns out I got quite a surprise. The MyHealthTest showed my thyroid levels ("TSH" .. I've learned all about that now) those levels were high. So that test result gave me the little push I needed to go and discuss them with my regular doctor and we did some deeper tests and it turns out I have a thyroid condition - hashimoto's! .. and I thought my general feeling a bit tired was normal. Without this easy test from MyHealthTest I probably would not have found out about this for quite some time - so THANK YOU MyHealthTest, for both the easy test, and the information with the results to help me discuss with my doctor. I really do feel a whole lot better now - both the comfort of knowing, and also because the treatment has made a world of difference to that tired feeling."

Nicholas, VIC

MyHealthTest’s fingerprick blood testing service is reliable and accurate.

Research studies have shown TSH levels can be reliably measured from dried blood spots. Our dried blood spot sampling method has also been validated and is comparable to testing with traditional whole blood samples (e.g. having blood taken at a local pathology centre).

Find out more about dried blood spot testing and our state-of-the-art Australian pathology lab.

Your TSH levels can be affected by extreme stress and illness, if you take a sample incorrectly or when comparing your results to different laboratories. We recommend you read the TSH Testing section for more information. Your healthcare provider will take into account your medical history, signs and symptoms and will address any concerns at the time of assessing your TSH results, further information for clinicians is provided in the Clinical Information section.

Our TSH test service is currently available online from our webstore.

You may purchase this service for your own use or for an individual you care for i.e. another adult you are the authorised carer for.

Pathology results from different laboratories can and do vary. This should be considered if comparing to results from other labs. For more information click here to see a video explaining why this occurs https://www.patientpower.info.

MyHealthTest test uses dried blood spot samples using laboratory techniques which differ from traditional whole blood testing. The MyHealthTest test results have been validated and compared to traditional testing to ensure that you are given an accurate and reliable result.

If your TSH test result is out of the expected healthy range this will be indicated on your report.

An example report can be found here

If your TSH level is below the expected level you may have hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid). People with hyperthyroidism usually have symptoms such as weight loss and a high heart rate. If this is the case your doctor will likely conduct additional tests.

In some cases, an individual with hypothyroidism may not return a high test result. Your relevant history, signs and symptoms, in addition to your blood test, are taken into consideration at the time of assessing if you may have a thyroid problem. If you have any concerns, please see your doctor.

If you are on medication for hypothyroidism you should take your medication as usual on the day you take your Thyroid (TSH) test.

Eating as usual and taking your medication will not interfere with your test result.

This test is not recommended to be used during pregnancy or for individuals under 18 years of age. If you feel unwell or have concerns about your thyroid, please go directly to your doctor.

This test is not suitable for:

  • Detecting a pituitary disorder
  • Detecting a hypothalamic disorder
  • Detecting cancer of the thyroid

If you have further questions, please view our general frequently asked questions

The following information is intended for clinicians, and consumers who want more details about this test.

MyHealthTest’s fingerprick blood test for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) was developed to improve the access and convenience of blood testing for individuals finding it difficult to present for blood tests as planned, particularly for those with constraints relating to time, geography or impaired physical ability on getting to the doctor.

This test is an accurate tool for detecting most primary hypothyroid disorders and for monitoring and assessing the success of thyroid replacement therapy for hypothyroidism under medical supervision. A low level does not necessarily indicate a hyperthyroid disorder, further testing may be required.

The test may also be used under medical supervision for monitoring TSH levels for individuals at a higher risk of developing thyroid disease or those undergoing treatment for hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid).

This test is the first line screening tool to identify individuals that may have a thyroid problem. It is not suitable in the detection of the following:

  • Pituitary conditions (secondary hypothyroidism or secondary hyperthyroidism)
  • Conditions of the hypothalamus
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Diagnosing a thyroid disorder during pregnancy *
  • Individuals under 18 years of age *

* There is no consensus as to appropriate reference intervals for pregnant women or children under the age of 18 years.

This test service does not include additional tests sometimes used to further investigate a thyroid problem. These tests may be recommended by healthcare professionals after an initial TSH test. These include:

  • Thyroxine (fT4): used to confirm an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) diagnosis after an abnormal TSH and for monitoring thyroid replacement hormone therapy
  • Triiodothyronine (fT3): to confirm an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
  • Antithyroxin-binding globulin (anti-TBG): to diagnose autoimmune thyroid disease
  • Antithyroid peroxidase (anti-TPO): to diagnose autoimmune thyroid disease, in particular Hashimoto’s disease
  • Thyrotropin receptor antibody (TRAb): to diagnose autoimmune thyroid disease, in particular Graves' disease

MyHealthTest do not offer these additional tests, a discussion with a healthcare professional is needed to decide if further testing is required

Dried blood spot results obtained for TSH are comparable to serum samples collected by venepuncture and analysed by the same method (DELFIA time resolved fluorescence immunoassay), and demonstrate clinically acceptable precision to be used as a tool for both screening and in monitoring thyroid conditions.

Figure 1. TSH Bland Altman and Linear Regression analysis of serum vs DBS

Assay type: DELFIA time resolved fluorescence (Perkin Elmer)
Instrument: Victor2D (Perkin Elmer)
Sample:Fingerprick dried blood spot (DBS)
Measurand:TSH concentration in whole blood
Measurement Range:0.5 – 100 mIU/L
Limit of Quantitation:0.5 mIU/L
Reference Interval:0.5 - 4.2 mIU/L
Repeatability (within-run precision):0.8 mIU/L at 4.7 mIU/L; 7.1% at 27 mIU/L
Reproducibility (intermediate precision)*:14% at 4.7 mIU/L; 9.5% at 27 mIU/L
Stability:12 days
Interferences:
  • Heterophilic antibodies in the patient sample may occasionally interfere with the assay, falsely elevating the reported value
  • High or low haematocrit outside the expected range of 39 – 53% may affect the reported TSH value due to the nature of dried blood spots
Thermal stability:46°C for 2 days

*Further information on measurement uncertainty is available upon request.

Samples are stable for up to 12 days after collection and thermal stability testing confirmed that after holding dried blood spot samples at 46°C for two days there was no significant difference in the TSH values obtained.

When evaluating TSH results there are several factors that need to be considered by healthcare professionals.

Medications: the following common medications may affect results:

  • Birth control pill
  • Menopausal hormone therapy (HRT)
  • Antidepressants
  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs
  • Glucocorticosteroids
  • Herbs/supplements
  • Diabetes medication
  • Antiepileptic medications
  • Antiarrhythmic drugs containing amiodarone

This list is not exhaustive.

Medical conditions: certain conditions should be considered as they are known to affect TSH levels. These include: diabetes, pregnancy and menopause.

Other factors that do not physically change TSH levels but may interfere with the test results are included in the table above.

An example test report can be viewed here