According to the American thyroid association, more than 20 million Americans have a thyroid disease. On top of that, 60% of them are entirely unaware of their condition.
The only way to find out if you are one of the affected is to get your thyroid hormones tested. Thankfully, now there is a way to get your thyroid hormones tested without visiting a lab or a clinic.
At-home test kits are a simple, affordable, and time-saving method to test your thyroid health from the comfort of your own living room. At the same time, they can provide similar accuracy as getting tested in person.
In this article, you will discover the main warning signs of thyroid diseases as well as the most reputable at-home test kits that can help you receive a timely diagnosis.
TL; DR: What Is the Best At-Home Thyroid Test Kit?
- At-home thyroid test kits can save you time, money, and effort to track your thyroid health by avoiding visiting an in-person lab or doctor’s office.
- At-home thyroid test kits must be CLIA and CAP certified to guarantee accuracy and reliability.
- The main indicators to test for include TSH, T3, T4, and antibodies. TSH is usually the first indicator affected by thyroid problems
- Paloma Health is the only at-home test provider fully covered by insurance and is dedicated only to thyroid health.
What are early warning signs of thyroid problems?
Detecting thyroid problems as soon as possible is essential because they can lead to severe complications if left untreated. In general, women are about seven times more likely to develop thyroid disorders than men.
Some of the early signs of reduced thyroid function (hypothyroidism) may include:
- Weight gain
- Hypersensitivity to cold
- Dry skin
- Irregular menstruation
Untreated hypothyroidism can lead to complications such as heart problems, infertility, hearing loss, enlargement of the thyroid gland, and fetal retardation in pregnant women.
The early signs of hyperfunction of the thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism) may include:
- Nervousness and irritability
- Mood swings
- Chronic fatigue
- Unexplained weight loss
- Hypersensitivity to heat
- Excessive Thirst
Hyperthyroidism may lead to an increased risk of osteoporosis, eye problems, heart failure, and irregular heartbeat.
How can I check my thyroid at home?
Now it is much easier to track your thyroid health or help uncover any health concern by getting an at-home test kit.
Usually, they are much more affordable than visiting a lab in person, and you can then share them with your healthcare provider to receive guidance from an expert.
On top of that, at-home thyroid tests are made as easy to use as possible. All you have to do is purchase one online, and the kit will be delivered directly to your house the very next day.
Then you have to perform an easy finger prick and mail the sample back for analysis. The only difference is that it may take a couple of days extra until your lab results are ready.
Thyroid test kit
Once you receive your thyroid test kit, make sure to read the instructions carefully and follow every step of the process.
Everything you need will be provided with your kit. Typical contents include:
- Alcohol swab
- A test strip, collection card, or small test tube
- Biohazard bag
- Prepaid return shipping label
Usually, you must first register it in order to receive your results later. Then you must prepare for the test by washing your hands with warm water for a couple of minutes in order to improve the blood flow to your fingers.
Select your middle or ring finger and wipe thoroughly with the alcohol swab before drawing some blood. All at-home tests require blood drawn via finger prick.
One or several sterile lancets will be provided with your kit. All you have to do is prick your finger with the small lancet and wipe the first drop. Make sure to position the lancet on the site of your finger, avoiding the middle part.
Then you have to squeeze some blood out of your finger onto a test strip, collection card, or into a small test tube that will be provided with your package.
If your test requires you to use a card, you must wait for the blood to dry on it for at least 30 minutes. Then clean your finger and apply a bandage.
All you have to do is put the sample in the biohazard bag which is provided with your kit, and then use the return envelope to mail the blood sample back to the lab! The lab will send the results back directly to you via email or another electronic portal where you registered the kit.
How much does a thyroid test cost?
The cost of the kit can vary from $100 to $150 depending on whether your test includes just the standard thyroid panel or also additional tests.
Some providers also offer a monthly subscription which can lower the price of their test anywhere between 25-75%.
In addition, many companies offer online consultations with medical specialists after receiving your results. The cost usually varies between $50 and $100, depending on the duration of the visit.
What is a full thyroid panel?
The standard thyroid panel includes testing for the 3 hormones which are directly linked to the function of the thyroid gland:
- TSH (Thyroid-stimulating hormone)
- total T4 (Thyroxine)
- total T3 (Triiodothyronine)
T4 is the main hormone produced by the thyroid gland and the main thyroid hormone that should be circulating in your organism. Yet, it is not active but functions as a prohormone for the production of T3. T3 is 4 times more potent than T4.
T3 and T4 can be free or bound to proteins. Free T4 sometimes cannot be measured directly and therefore is measured by calculating Free Thyroxine Index (FTI). The test is highly informative when combined with the TSH test for both hypo- and hyperthyroidism.
T3 is the main active thyroid hormone in the human body but it is synthesized in other organs such as the liver by converting the circulating T4. The enzymes converting T4 to T3 are called iodothyronine deiodinases and the normal T4 to T3 ratio is 14:1.
The total and free T3 test is highly informative for hyperthyroidism.
TSH is also known as thyrotropic hormone or thyrotropin. The thyroid gland does not produce this hormone – instead, it is synthesized by the pituitary gland, and its primary role is to regulate the function of the thyroid.
TSH stimulates the release of T4 from the thyroid gland, which is then converted to T3 in different tissues. TSH is usually the first hormone to display changes when there is thyroid disease, and therefore, this is arguable the best indicator for a problem.
These 3 hormones are a subject of a negative feedback loop, meaning that if the thyroid gland has problems producing T4, TSH will rise to increase its stimulating effects. Elevated TSH may also lead to enlargement of the gland.
In addition, a full thyroid panel may also include tests for reverse T3 and antibodies like TSH receptor, thyroglobulin, and thyroid peroxidase (TPO).
Some of the T4 in your body gets permanently inactivated and transformed into reverse T3 instead, which has no function in the human body. Reverse T3 is not considered useful in non-hospitalized patients.
Antibodies are tests that can help diagnose autoimmune conditions that affect the thyroid gland. For example, positive anti-TPO and/or anti-thyroglobulin antibodies are indicative of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Positive antibodies for the TSH receptor indicate Graves’ disease.
How reliable are home thyroid tests?
It is important to remember that no test is 100% accurate and even going to an in-person lab has a risk for false-positive and false-negative results.
With that being said, certified at-home thyroid test kits have accuracy that is comparable to in-person clinics. The main certifications to look for include the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) and the College of American Pathologists (CAP).
First of all, the lab and the kit used for testing must be CLIA-certified. This means they have to meet high standards to obtain both state and federal certifications and submit themselves to regular inspections.
Being CAP-certified also ensures best practices regarding obtaining the accuracy of test results and meeting other important requirements. All at-home test kits included in this article are CLIA and CAP-certified.
Paloma Vs EverlyWell Vs Lets Get Checked Vs Verisana Vs MyLab Box
Here is a comparison of our top pics for at-home thyroid tests.
Paloma Health Thyroid Test
Paloma is the only company on this list that has dedicated its services entirely to thyroid health.
They offer an at-home thyroid test kit that includes TSH, free T4, free T3, and anti-TPO for just $99. If you are a member for $16 a month, you will have a 25% discount. In addition, you may also add vitamin D3 and reverse T3 to the package.
You will send your blood sample on the collection card provided with the test, and your results are typically returned in 7 days.
When your results are ready, you can also see a board-certified thyroid doctor online, which will cost you $42 for 30 mins. The consultation can help you interpret them and get a personalized treatment plan if needed.
If needed, the physician will lay out the treatment options for you, carefully explain the potential benefits of the recommended medications and/or supplements, and when you may expect the results. The prices of the medications start from $19 for a levothyroxine refill request.
On top of that, you will have the option to order your medication if prescribed any and pick it up at your local pharmacy. Paloma doctors consider all medication options.
30% off with the link below
LetsGetChecked Thyroid Test
LetsGetChecked offers more than 30 home health tests for various health markers and diseases, one of which is for thyroid problems.
The standard thyroid test kit by LetsGetChecked includes TSH, T3, and T4 tests and costs $99.
In addition, you may add tests for the antibodies thyroglobulin and TPO, which sums up to the total price of $119. The antibodies can help diagnose Hashimoto’s.
You will also receive step-by-step guidance on how to use the test. After a finger prick, you will collect your sample in a test tube, so there is no need to wait for the blood to dry.
LetsGetChecked offers the quickest delivery both ways – your kit will arrive the very next day after you place your order, and once you mail it back, you will receive accurate lab results in 2-5 days.
You can also track the test kit from the moment it leaves the facility all the way to your door.
In order to understand your results correctly, a dedicated team of nurses will be available 24/7 for contact.
30% off with the link below
EverlyWell Thyroid Test
EverlyWell offers a wide variety of at-home tests for various conditions, including thyroid health.
The test includes TSH, T3, Т4, and anti-TPO, which costs $99. Yet, EverlyWell offers enormous discounts for members – up to 75%. The monthly membership price is $24.99 a month.
The website offers detailed directions to guide you throughout the process. You will send your blood sample on the collection card provided with the test.
Once you have sent a sample for testing in their CLIA-certified lab, a physician will review your results before sending them to you. It may take up to 5 business days to get your results.
In addition, you may join an online group seminar with a healthcare professional specializing in thyroid health.
MyLab Box Thyroid Test
MyLab Box offers an at-home thyroid test that includes free T3, free T4, TSH, and anti-TPO for the cost of $139. If you choose to subscribe for regular tests every 6 months, you will get 10% off each test.
Once you order your test, it will take only 2 days until it ships to your door. It also takes as little as 2-5 days to receive your results once you mail them back.
Verisana Thyroid Test
Verisana offers a wide range of comprehensive tests, including an at-home thyroid test that includes free T3, free T4, TSH, and anti-TPO. The cost of the test is $154.95.
You will receive detailed guidance on how to use the Verisana test with your kit, but in addition, you may download the step-by-step manual from the website.
You will collect your sample via finger prick, using the lancet and the collection card provided with the kit. It needs 60 minutes until the blood dries completely so that you may put inside the blood sample return pouch and mail it back.
It takes about 1-2 weeks until you receive your online report. Once your lab report is ready, you will also get information on possible symptoms that may occur when there is an imbalance of your thyroid hormones.
It is best to take these results to your healthcare provider since Verisana does not offer medical consultations.
At Home Thyroid Test Reviews
The following reviews are taken from Amazon. Unfortunately, there were no reviews available for the thyroid test kit of myLab Box.
Paloma health thyroid test reviews – 5/5 stars on average
Lisa – 5/5 – Verified purchase:
I hate going into the doctor office/lab to get tested so this was a great solution for me. I was trying to get pregnant and I wanted to know my TSH levels so I did this at home test. It was super easy and the packaging is really cute. I got alerted when my results were ready. The whole process was very easy and fun. I highly recommend if you are a busy gal and want to stay on top of your health!
EverlyWell thyroid test reviews – 4/5 stars on average
Tara – 4/5 – Verified purchase:
This is the second time I order this, turned in the test on a Thursday and got my results on Tuesday… They even have an option for you to save the file to give to your doctor… If you’ve done more than one test it also will do a comparison from previous tests. The only complaint I have is if you want to talk to one of their doctors it could take over a month to hear from anybody.
LetsGetChecked thyroid Test Reviews – 3.8/5 stars on average
Hollie – 5/5 – Verified purchase:
The blood vial was challenging to fill, but I did so with 1 finger prick from 1 lancet. What worked for me was to lower my pricked finger (rest arm by my side) and the blood started flowing freely. Once filled, I chose to drop the packaged sample off at UPS, vs scheduled pick-up. It was so easy. Received notification when the lab received my sample, and they estimated 2-3 day turnaround for results.
I tested Wed AM and had my results Fri AM. It was a super quick 48 hours from blood sample to results. I’m thrilled we finally have an option for at-home testing TSH levels. In 6 weeks, once my dosage levels off, I will test again using the thyroid antibody test.
Verisana Thyroid Test Reviews – 4/5 stars on average
Itzel – 4/5 – Verified purchase:
I was hesitant to purchase this thyroid test based on some of the reviews. I’m glad I trusted my gut and just went for it. I feel like these types of blood tests can help you narrow things down and find the root causes of symptoms. Hypothyroidism is in my family’s DNA, I was afraid I would be a victim of this disease but with just a prick on my finger, it was a relief to know that I am not. I was impressed by how simple yet professional this kit was designed to be. I had no issues but my only complaint is the wait time for the results.
The Verdict – What Is the Best at Home Thyroid Test Kit?
All at-home thyroid test kits on this list are reputable brands that use CLIA and CAP-certified laboratories to guarantee the accuracy of your results.
Paloma Health takes this one step further as its services are fully dedicated to thyroid health.
In fact, it is one-stop for all your needs regarding thyroid function – you can receive an at-home test, telehealth consultation, prescription, and treatment if needed.
On the other hand, EverlyWell, LetsGetChecked, myLab Box, and Verisana offer a wide variety of at-home tests, which can help you investigate your overall hormonal status apart from your thyroid health.
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