SELFCheck Thyroid Health Test
The SELFCheck Thyroid test allows users to check whether they have an underactive thyroid. It can be done at home and produces a result in just 10 minutes.
This test kit does not need to be sent to a testing laboratory. When used correctly, this test provides you with accurate results within 10 minutes. Order from our UK pharmacy and receive your test within 24 hours.
The SELFCheck thyroid health test is a newly available thyroid testing kit which tests the levels of the thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). High levels of TSH may be indicative of an underactive thyroid. It provides results to the user within 10 minutes, from the comfort of their home. This test can be of use for people who are suffering with the symptoms of an underactive thyroid or wish to assess their TSH levels.
Some thyroid tests require urine samples, but the SELFCheck test does not. Instead, a sample of blood is required. The blood can be extracted using a pricking-lancet - included with each test. The blood is transferred via a pipette and deposited into the sample well of a testing cassette, which will display results in approximately 10 minutes.
What is a thyroid?
The thyroid is a ‘butterfly’ shaped gland found in the middle of the neck, just below the larynx (the voice box). Thyroids produce hormones which have important roles in the body. Two key hormones produced by the thyroid are thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3).
These hormones help to regulate the body’s metabolic rate, digestive function, cardiac function, the muscles, development of the brain, mood and the maintenance of bones. So it’s an important gland playing a key role in our bodies.
What is an underactive thyroid?
An underactive thyroid is one which does not produce thyroxine hormones in large enough quantities to fulfil their functions. This can cause a number of debilitating symptoms, which can include:
- In women, problems with the menstrual cycle (including heavier or lighter periods).
- Numbness, tingling sensations or even pain in the hands and fingers.
- Reduced interest in sexual activity
- Stiff but easily broken hair and nails (brittle).
- Dry, flaky or scaly skin.
- Muscle problems like cramps, pain, tenderness or weakness.
- Slowed movement or thought-processes.
- Mental health problems like anxiety or depression.
- Feelings of constipation.
- Weight gain.
- Increased sensitivity to the cold.
- Feelings of tiredness.
It’s of paramount importance that an underactive thyroid is detected and treated as soon as possible. The decreased presence of certain thyroid-producing hormones can change how the body processes and absorbs fat. This can cause a number of problems, including high cholesterol and clogged arteries - which, in turn, could lead to more consequential conditions like heart attacks or angina.
How does the home thyroid test work?
Thyroid function is overseen and managed by another gland called the pituitary gland. It is small, peanut-shaped and is found at the base of the brain. If thyroid production of T4 and T3 starts to slow, the pituitary gland releases a hormone of its own - called the Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone (TSH).
TSH helps to encourage the thyroid to work harder and produce more T4 and T3. If someone has high levels of TSH, this is often indicative of an under-performing (underactive) thyroid. This test measures TSH levels.
How are underactive thyroids diagnosed?
Before treatment can be allocated, an underactive thyroid must be detected using a thyroid function test such as the SELFCheck thyroid health test. Tests are also available which can measure thyroid hormones such as T3 and T4, but this one measures TSH levels.
Once a test detects an underactive thyroid, treatment is usually prescribed. Treatment will often take the form of hormonal replacement. The most common of which is known as levothyroxine - it works by supplementing thyroxine (T4). If the production of triiodothyronine (T3) is thought to be the route of the problem, then medication supplementing T3 will be prescribed.
These hormone-replacement treatments are typically prescribed initially in smaller doses. If the thyroid continues to under-perform, the dose may be increased incrementally until a ‘maintenance’ dose is reached.
What is an overactive thyroid?
Overactive thyroids are as they sound - they overproduce hormones like T3 and T4 which can bring about symptoms also. Symptoms of an overactive thyroid usually include feelings of anxiousness, irritability, mood swings, difficulty sleeping, persistent tiredness, weakness, heat sensitivity, inflammation of the neck, increased heart beat, twitching or weight loss.
This particular test does not measure for overactive thyroids. If you notice any of these symptoms, we recommend seeking an appointment with your doctor at the soonest convenience.
Who should use the home thyroid test?
Anyone who may be suffering with the symptoms of an underactive thyroid can take this test. It helps to measure levels of TSH, high levels of which are highly indicative of an underactive thyroid. Furthermore, this test may be of use for those who are in the process of taking hormone-replacement treatment and wish to check whether their TSH production is normal.
Can I buy a home thyroid test online?
You can buy a SELFCheck thyroid test kit through our online pharmacy. There's no need to send off a sample to a lab. This test is carried out in the comfort of your own home. Click the buy now button and place your order for a test kit to be sent to you by courier delivery.
This test kit includes:
- 1 test device
- 1 plastic pipette
- 1 small bottle of fluid, 1ml
- 2 blood-sampling lancets
- 1 desiccant pouch (to sustain dryness)
Please contact us if you receive your kit and any of the above are missing.
It’s highly important that your test kit is used in the correct way, exactly as is described in the information leaflet. Not adhering to the instructions can interfere with the accuracy of your results, and subsequent tests may need to be conducted as a consequence.
- Inspect the test kit to ensure all components are present.
- Wash your hands with soap and warm water.
- Tear the upper notch of the foil pouch and remove the test device and the pipette.
- Inspect the finger-prick device (lancet). Be careful not to press the button until you’re ready to extract a blood sample.
- Remove the protective cap from the lancet. Twist delicately to remove, do not pull. You will feel when it separates from the lancet.
- Choose which finger you’d like to extract a sample from - either the forefinger or the middle finger.
- Massage the tip of your chosen finger to encourage blood flow.
- Use the alcoholic-sterilisation pad to clean the extraction site.
- Press the open area of the device onto your finger of choice. (The area where the cap was removed).
- Once comfortable, you can now push the trigger button.
- A needle will pierce your finger and immediately retract back into the device. You will feel a small prick, but it shouldn’t be too painful.
- Let your arm fall below your waistline and squeeze the finger until a large droplet of blood forms.
- Hold, but do not squeeze, the bulb of the pipette. Once you hold the tip of the pipette to the sample, blood will automatically be drawn inside.
- Ensure the pipette is filled to indication line. Try to avoid air bubbles. You may have to squeeze your finger in order to adequately fill the pipette.
- Once collected, transfer the blood onto the ‘sample well’ of the test device by applying pressure to the bulb of the pipette.
- Wait for 30-40 seconds for the blood to be completely absorbed into the sample well.
- Next, unscrew the blue cap from the small bottle containing a solution.
- Hold the bottle vertically and slowly add exactly 4 drops of the solution. Leave 2-3 seconds between each drop.
- The result is visible within 10 minutes. Do not read your result after 15 as is void.
Interpretation of results
Once you have completed the instructions described above and waited for approximately 10 minutes, results will be visible. Results are interpreted with either two, one or no coloured lines. The intensity of the line colour has no impact on the result.
Two coloured lines appear alongside both the ‘T’ (test) and ‘C’ (control) marks. Sometimes, the ‘T’ line may be significantly lighter or darker than that which appears on the ‘C’ line. However, this still counts as two lines.
This means your TSH levels are higher than normal, which is indicative of an underactive thyroid. You should consult with your doctor at the earliest convenience.
Only one coloured line appears alongside the ‘C’ mark. Nothing is visible near the ‘T’ mark. This means that your TSH levels are normal, and you don’t have hypothyroidism.
However, this test can only tell you if you have an underactive thyroid. If you have an overactive thyroid, this will not show up on the test and will be displayed as ‘negative’; so if you get a negative result and you’re having any symptoms such as shaking, sweating, increased anxiety or a fast heart rate, you should still see a doctor.
If no lines appear at all, or there is only one visible line alongside the ‘T’ mark, then this means the result cannot be interpreted. In these instances, keep all test-kit components and contact the manufacturer.
How does the SELFCheck thyroid health test work?
A sample of blood is extracted using a pricking lancet. It is transferred using a pipette and deposited into a sample well. Once the blood is absorbed, a solution is subsequently added.
After 10 minutes, results will be visible. However, after 15 minutes results are not considered reliable.
Does it need to go to a lab?
No, this is an entirely home-operated test. Your results will be displayed on a testing cassette.
How long does it take?
It will take roughly five minutes to prepare for the test and 10 minutes waiting time for the results. Results read after 15 minutes of test completion are not guaranteed to be accurate.
What type of sample is required?
This particular test requires a small blood sample. All tests include a finger-pricking lancet which helps to extract a sample. You may need to apply additional pressure to the finger to encourage blood flow.
What should I do if my results are negative?
If the result is negative (only one coloured band is visible alongside the ‘C’ mark), then this means your TSH levels are normal. However, if your symptoms persist you must make an appointment with your doctor.
What should I do if my results are positive?
If you read a positive result from the cassette, you must speak to your doctor as a matter of urgency. Your doctor will recommend an appropriate course of action.
What should I do if my results are invalid?
If your result is invalid, you should keep all components of the test kit and contact the manufacturer.
How accurate is the SELFCheck thyroid health test?
When compared with other laboratory testing methods, the SELFCheck thyroid health test was 95.5% agreeable with their own results. It is highly accurate and reliable, given it is used correctly.
However, while this test is highly reliable, it can occasionally read inaccurate results for a very small proportion of users.
Can underactive thyroids be treated?
For the most-part, yes. An underactive thyroid is defined as one which does not produce hormones in great enough quantities to fulfil their basic functions. Typically, underactive thyroids are treated with hormone replacement tablets.
Usually, a small dose will initially be prescribed which is followed up with a blood test to determine whether adequate levels of hormones have been replaced. This continues until a ‘maintenance’ dose is found.
Who should take this test?
Anyone who is suffering with the symptoms of an underactive thyroid. You can read more about these symptoms in the full description of this page.
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