Why You Lower Your Dose With a Low TSH Level
Where is the pituitary gland located?
I'm Dr. Bob Lahita, Chairman of Medicine at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center and Professor of Medicine at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. I'm going to talk to you in this segment about your thyroid and TSH: what a lowering or an elevation of TSH really means.TSH stands for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone. When the TSH level is high it means that the pituitary gland, which is at the base of the brain is producing thyroid stimulating hormone. Interestingly enough, the thyroid produces hormones itself, which cause a feedback loop and really turns the TSH off and on and keeps the TSH levels normal.When the TSH levels go very high it means that the feedback loop isn't working and that the thyroid is not producing enough thyroid hormone. If the TSH levels are low, it means that the thyroid is producing too much hormone and the feedback is to turn off the TSH level.So your doctor basically uses the TSH to determine whether you're hypo (underactive thyroid) or hyper (overactive thyroid.) If the TSH level is very, very high it means that your thyroid hormone medication has to be increased. If the TSH level is very low, it means that you are possibly taking too much thyroid medication and your doctor will have to lower the dose.For more information about this, go to About.com.