Q. I suffer from anxiety and OCD. Is it due to increase in FT3 level?

Answered by
Dr. Shaikh Sadaf
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Nov 26, 2019 and last reviewed on: Nov 30, 2019

Hello doctor,

I suffered from terrible anxiety and OCD that seems to come and go over time. My mother had exactly the same disorder like myself. She was diagnosed with an under active thyroid and autoimmune thyroid issue. On taking medication to sort her levels she has been free from the mental health problems.

I recently started getting the issue again and took a thyroid function blood test. All levels were within range but my FT3 was slightly elevated at 8.97 pmol /L. I would love an expert opinion on if periodic FT3 level increases could be causing the anxiety, depression, and OCD issues. I am currently on Sertraline 150 mg. Coupled with my mother’s exact issue, and cure, I am not sure what these results could mean? What should my next step be and could this elevated FT3 cause my anxiety to start?



Welcome to icliniq.com.

I just read your query and from what you have mentioned it appears that you have sub-clinical hyperthyroidism and the FT3 here does not seem to be high enough to be causing the symptoms that you have mentioned so rest assured on that front as of now. This condition does not need any treatment as of now. This condition just needs regular follow up thyroid function tests every six weeks to three months. You must consult your psychiatrist for your anxiety and OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) issues. You can also benefit from avoiding caffeinated beverages and alcohol if at all. So as regards the thyroid function test just keep repeating it regularly.

I hope this helps.

Thank you doctor,

I took the test four to five days after my anxiety resurfaced. I was sweating, anxious, and nervous. I read that a sudden elevated FT3 may cause the above symptoms to suddenly appear and trigger. As an endocrinologist are there any other tests that you could recommend to potentially identify a sudden mood change, anxiety attack, nervousness, and OCD. Also, should I report to my GP or take any iodine or vitamins?



Welcome back to icliniq.com.

There is a 24 hours urinary metanephrine, catecholamines and vanillylmandelic acid test that could explain the sudden anxiety attack, and nervousness, but it is not clear whether you had a raised blood pressure at the time of attack, also it will not help with the mood change and OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) diagnosis unfortunately.

You can repeat the thyroid function test again after six weeks to be on the safer side. You can definitely consult with your GP but I do not see the need for any iodine supplements.

I hope this helps.

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