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Does high TSH level affect pregnancy?

Answered by: Dr Abha Majumdar

Head, Centre of IVF & Human Reproduction, Dept of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi

Q. My 25 years old wife is almost 60 days pregnant. During initial 45 days, her blood test showed Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) is 10.33. The doctor suggested Eltroxin (50 mcg). Is there any risk to pregnancy? Our doctor told us that there will be risk for baby’s life due to thyroid level. Eltroxin 50 mcg is enough to bring down the thyroid level from 10.33 to normal level. Which foods can she take and avoid due to high TSH level?

A.  Hypothyroidism (high TSH) during conception and pregnancy should be treated. It has its effect on neurological development of the baby. High TSH itself is not an indication for termination of pregnancy but any problem if it has happened cannot be ruled out. Your wife should take Eltroxin 50 mcg daily and repeat serum T4 and TSH after 3 weeks and depending upon the levels, her dose can be adjusted. Eltroxin should be taken empty stomach. Anti TPO (Thyroid Peroxidase) antibodies can be done in your wife's blood sample to know the type of hypothyroidism. Usually it is due to dietary insufficiency and iodized salt should be taken.

A.  Hypothyroidism (high TSH) during conception and pregnancy should be treated. It has its effect on neurological development of the baby. High TSH itself is not an indication for termination of pregnancy but any problem if it has happened cannot be ruled out. Your wife should take Eltroxin 50 mcg daily and repeat serum T4 and TSH after 3 weeks and depending upon the levels, her dose can be adjusted. Eltroxin should be taken empty stomach. Anti TPO (Thyroid Peroxidase) antibodies can be done in your wife's blood sample to know the type of hypothyroidism. Usually it is due to dietary insufficiency and iodized salt should be taken.

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