Best At-Home Thyroid Tests

Private results from samples taken in the comfort of your own home

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An estimated 20 million Americans live with thyroid disease, and as many as 60% of them are probably unaware of it. If you’ve wondered whether you’re included in that statistic, you may have thought about buying an at-home thyroid test kit to know for sure.

Proper thyroid function is essential for your health.The hormones it produces are involved in:

  • Brain function
  • Digestion
  • Fertility
  • Glandular function
  • Heart health
  • Metabolism
  • Organ function

Every system in your body relies on thyroid hormones, so when the hormonal balance is off, you can experience a wide range of symptoms. Some of the main ones are unexplained weight changes, temperature issues, sleep problems, and mood disorders.

Thyroid disease is diagnosed with blood tests. Most thyroid conditions are treated with medications, but some may require more invasive treatments such as surgery or radiation. It's important to understand what is involved in thyroid disease and how to test yourself with the best at-home thyroid tests.

Best At-Home Thyroid Tests

Best At-Home Thyroid Tests
Best At-Home Thyroid Tests

Best Overall : Everlywell

Everlywell

 Everlywell

What We Like
  • Tests four variables: TSH, Free T4, Free T3, TPO 

  • Website and membership discounts available

  • Results reviewed by a board-certified physician in your state

What We Don't Like
  • Some reviewers reported the test results took an extended time period

  • Must provide 10 blood spots for testing, which can be more complicated

Everlywell’s at-home thyroid test kit is the best overall because it tests the four primary thyroid biomarkers and does so at a lower price ($99) than competitors that test for the same biomarkers. We also liked that they offered several discounts, such as discount codes or a “membership” discount where you pay $24.99 for a membership and $24.99 for this test. 

While Everlywell advertises that results take “days” to return, some of the company’s customer reviews say the process took an extended amount of time. They also noted that if you opted for a physician to review your results with you, the time frame for results might extend by weeks. 

Everlywell’s test kit comes with pre-paid shipping, detailed directions, and sample collection materials such as lancets, alcohol pads, gauze, and bandages. You do have to provide 10 blood spots for testing, which can be more complicated to provide more than one blood spot on some of the other tests we reviewed. 

Everlywell uses CLIA-certified laboratories that meet high standards of testing, and a physician in your own state reviews the results. We also really how easy it is to understand the website and personalized report you receive when you get your results. The report includes actionable steps that can help you understand what you may need to do after receiving your results.

Best in Multiple Categories : ZRT

ZRT

 ZRT

What We Like
  • Offers three thyroid tests, ranging from basic to comprehensive and elemental exposures

  • The company is its own CLIA-certified laboratory

What We Don't Like
  • Tests are on the pricier end, ranging from $175 to $319

Biochemist and breast-cancer researcher David Zava started ZRT Laboratory in 1998, intending to provide accurate, comprehensive, and meaningful test results with educated insight that help you and your doctors make informed decisions about treatments.

We chose ZRT Laboratory because it offers the most options in terms of testing and is itself a CLIA-certified lab, not just a vendor. It claims to use a superior extraction process for samples that means you don’t have to stop taking supplemental hormones before testing, which you have to do for some tests. You’ll receive your results within 5 to 7 days of the company receiving your test materials. 

ZRT works with select insurance companies and will bill them for you as an out-of-network provider. Your insurance company may or may not cover the costs--be sure to check with them ahead of time.

You get a lot of information for the blood test kits you order from ZRT, but this does come at a price. The basic kit tests for T4, free T3, TSH, and TPO and costs $175. The Complete Thyroid Profile tests these and iodine, bromine, selenium, arsenic, cadmium, mercury, and creatinine, but costs $319, the highest-priced test we reviewed. The Complete profile also involves providing a urine sample. This is a dry urine sample, which means you must ensure the urine card is fully dry after you’ve collected your specimen before mailing it.

Best Value, TSH Only : imaware

imaware

 imaware

What We Like
  • Lower-priced test kit at $69

  • CLIA-certified laboratory with physician-reviewed results

  • Accepts FSA/HSA cards

What We Don't Like
  • Female-only thyroid test

  • Must provide your email address to see a sample report

We chose imaware as the best TSH testing value because it provides a lower-cost test ($69) with quality assurances that include a CLIA-certified laboratory and a physician’s review of all results. The company accepts FSA/HSA cards to help supplement the test’s costs. 

We also liked that the company includes a sample report before you purchase the test to better understand how your results will come. The only drawback to this report is that you must provide an email address for imaware to send the report. 

The test is a finger prick, and imaware’s collection kit includes two lancets, a collection device to apply the blood, an alcohol pad, bandage, and a prepaid return label. Once you mail in your sample, you can expect to receive results within 7 days. 

One of the major drawbacks of this test is that it is solely for women. However, for a thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH)-only test, the test is affordable and imaware’s methodology appears solid and secure for helping determine if you have overactive or underactive thyroid functioning.

Best for Online Thyroid Treatment Planning : Paloma Health

Paloma Health Complete Thyroid Blood Test Kit

Paloma Health Complete Thyroid Blood Test Kit 

What We Like
  • Results accompanied by personalized explanations

  • Free follow-up call available

  • Company works with some major insurance plans

What We Don't Like
  • Website provides little information on testing procedure

  • Website provides little information about thyroid disease

Paloma Health is an online medical practice specializing in hypothyroidism, and that’s why they’re the winner in this category. This test measures TSH, Free T4, Free T3, TPO. Paloma offers online consultations with a doctor ($99/30 minutes) or nutritionist ($75/30 minutes) once you get your results, and we value the continuity of testing their site provides. 

Paloma Health is a newer company, founded in 2018. The company is a completely online medical practice specializing in hypothyroidism for patients over 18 who have hypothyroidism or who’ve had their thyroid removed. The site includes information on its 12 thyroid specialists, all of whom are board-certified in endocrinology, family practice, or internal medicine.

In terms of results, the samples are analyzed by CLIA-certified laboratories and physician-reviewed. The complete thyroid test is $99, which aligns with many of the other at-home tests we reviewed.

Best Value for Antibody Testing : LetsGetChecked

LetsGetChecked Thyroid Antibody Test

 LetsGetChecked Thyroid Antibody Test

What We Like
  • Tests TSH, Free T4, Free T3, TPO, and Tgbn

  • College of American Pathologists (CAP) certified test

  • Online results in 2 to 5 days

What We Don't Like
  • Doesn’t include Total T4, which ZRT Elite does

  • Test requires more blood than most others, with collection in a vial instead of on a card

While it’s not quite as comprehensive as the ZRT Elite kit, the LetsGetChecked Thyroid Antibody kit tests for almost as many antibodies, but at the much lower price of $119. It is also available off-the-shelf at some drug stores so it’s easily accessible. 

The test is certified by the CAP (College of American Pathologists). Certification requires a rigorous, year-long process that involves meeting high industry standards for quality and performance. We also like that the company returns results quickly, within 2 to 5 days of receiving your sample. 

Further accessibility points go to the fact the company offers a 24/7 helpline to get your questions answered. Also, a nurse will call you to explain your results and answer any questions you may have. 

This test’s most significant drawback is that it requires a vial sample instead of a finger blot like many tests. You may have to squeeze your finger quite a bit to get enough blood for collection. 

    Final Verdict

    While each test had something different to offer the consumer, we feel that Everlywell offers the best overall at-home thyroid test. We chose Everlywell because of its thorough analysis of four markers, while also offering an affordable price point compared to other brands.

    In addition, all of the winning companies:

    • Use labs that are CLIA-certified, which means they adhere to United States federal standards implemented by the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988
    • Offer some degree of follow-up, whether it’s an automatic phone call from a medical professional, a simple way to request a phone call, a helpline, or a personalized analysis from a doctor
    • Have websites with accurate information about thyroid disease and testing, detailed information on the kits and the collection procedure, and relatively easy-to-find contact information in case you have questions or problems
    • Say they’ll deliver results in about a week or less (Interestingly, all of them have received online complaints about it taking longer than promised as well as praise for being faster than expected.)

    FAQs

    How At-Home Testing Works

    For most of the at-home thyroid test kids we researched, you order the kit online (or buy it at certain stores or pharmacies) and register the kit with the company’s website, which requires you to sign up for an account. That’s where you’ll get the results, since the online portal provides you with greater security than an email.

    Following the kit’s directions, you collect your blood sample (and urine sample, for one kit), package it up in the box that’s provided, and send it in to the lab. Once the results are in, you’ll be able to access them via your account.

    What Do At-Home Thyroid Tests Measure?

    A few different thyroid tests are available in at-home kits. Some check for only thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), which your body uses to tell the thyroid gland to increase the production of thyroid hormones.

    Other test kits include not only TSH but also thyroid hormones themselves:

    • Thyroxine (T4)
    • Triiodothyronine (T3)

    These can be measured in two ways: “free” levels, meaning that they’re circulating in the blood, and “total” levels, which includes the hormones that have bonded to other molecules. Taken together, these are a better indicator of thyroid disease than just TSH.

    Some kits also include one or two tests for antibodies to see if you have an autoimmune thyroid disease:

    • Thyroid peroxidase antibodies (TPO)
    • Thyroglobulin antibodies (Tgbn)

    What Samples Are Needed for At-Home Thyroid Tests?

    Tests for thyroid disorders look at thyroid hormone levels in your blood. For an at-home test, you’ll need to draw your blood yourself or have someone help you.

    Be sure you follow the directions for collection and for sending it in so you don’t contaminate the sample, invalidate the results, and have to do it all over again.

    What’s Included in At-Home Thyroid Tests?

    Your kit should include detailed instructions, a device for drawing blood (usually a lancet device like people with diabetes use for finger sticks), a collection device, and a container for mailing it in. Be sure to follow directions carefully and completely fill out any paperwork that’s included.

    Commercially available test kits have you collect blood either in a vial or on a paper collection card. Follow the instructions for how much blood to include to make sure your sample can be tested.

    Should I Take an At-Home Thyroid Test?

    There are many reasons for taking an at-home thyroid test. You may want to take one if you suspect a thyroid problem but:

    • You can’t go to the doctor for geographical, logistical, or financial reasons.
    • You have to wait a long time to get to a doctor's appointment.
    • Your doctor isn’t willing to order a thyroid test you’ve asked for.
    • You have phobias or anxiety regarding medical facilities, labs, or needles.
    • You want to check on whether your thyroid medication is working.
    • You’re concerned about going to a healthcare facility for testing because of possible exposure to the flu or other diseases. 

    You should know, though, that your doctor may not be willing to rely on an at-home test. If your test kit uncovers an abnormality, you’ll need to see a doctor for treatment, and they may send you for another test to confirm the diagnosis. Consider the time and cost of that while making your decision.

    Are At-Home Thyroid Tests Reliable? 

    No lab test is 100% accurate, and no large medical studies have been performed to back up at-home thyroid tests’ veracity. While the tests are fairly simple to use, there’s always a chance you’ll make a mistake that impacts the results.

    The technology behind home-based tests of thyroid hormones is evolving and improving. Still, false negatives or positives are possible. Additionally, interpreting results is an important part of the diagnostic process, and without a doctor’s involvement, that interpretation is difficult at best.

    What Are The Symptoms of Thyroid Disease?

    Someone who has hypothyroidism (low thyroid activity) is basically slowed down. Symptoms can include:

    • Fatigue
    • Weight gain
    • Puffy face
    • Constipation
    • Infertility or menstrual changes
    • Feeling cold all the time
    • Hair loss
    • Muscle and joint aches
    • Depression
    • Slowed heart rate

    Hyperthyroidism (high thyroid activity) is the opposite, with a sped up and racing metabolism. Symptoms can include:

    • Anxiety and feeling panicky
    • Difficulty concentrating
    • Insomnia
    • Tremors
    • Rapid heart rate
    • Exaggerated reflexes
    • Frequent bowel movements
    • Feeling overheated
    • Unexplained weight loss
    • Increased appetite
    • Increased sweating
    • Irregular menstrual periods
    • Restlessness

    Either state can be caused by autoimmune dysfunction that directly impacts the thyroid gland (Hashimoto’s or Graves’ disease), or by a history of other autoimmune diseases that may have a genetic component. Both can also be triggered by pregnancy and are more likely to impact women.

    Hypothyroidism also can be caused by radiation therapy for treating cancer in the head or neck.

    Does Thyroid Disease Affect Pregnancy?

    Thyroid hormones play an important role in your fertility and your baby’s early nervous system development.

    If you have thyroid disease, your periods may be farther apart. You may have an imbalance of estrogen and progesterone. It’s possible to have menstrual cycles that don’t involve ovulation, or your egg may not get a chance to implant before it’s expelled along with your menstrual blood. All of this can make conception difficult.

    If you have symptoms of thyroid disease and are pregnant or trying to get pregnant, be sure to talk to your doctor about getting tested and treated.

    How Do Much At-Home Thyroid Tests Cost?

    Prices for at-home thyroid tests kids range start at about $65 and go up into the $300–$400 range. Most of the time, the higher-priced kits test for more biomarkers of thyroid disease, but this isn’t always the case.

    Before you make a purchase, double-check to ensure that you’re getting all of the tests you want in one kit. That’ll help you avoid the need to repeat the procedure—and the expense.

    The purchase price of all the kits listed here includes shipping to your house and back to the lab as well as the lab fee. You should not encounter any additional costs.

    Does Insurance Cover At-Home Thyroid Tests?

    Most insurance policies do not cover the cost of at-home medical tests. Some may, however, so check with your insurance company. The majority of test-kit vendors won’t bill your insurance, so you’ll probably need to submit a claim for reimbursement.

    If you have a Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA), you may be able to use it to cover the cost of an at-home thyroid test. Check the details of your account and the policies of the test-kit vendor before ordering.

    How We Chose the Best At-Home Thyroid Tests

    We evaluated kits from many different companies, and some of those companies offer more than one kit, as well.

     The test-kit providers were evaluated on various criteria: cost, value, accuracy, speed, customer service/customer reviews, clear information presentation on the website, and clear instructions for collection, shipment, and kit registration. We then eliminated the companies that had higher prices but tested fewer biomarkers or offered fewer associated services, or that appeared to be disreputable.

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    Article Sources
    Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
    1. American Thyroid Association. General Information/Press Room.

    2. Hormone Health Network. Thyroid hormones. Updated December 2018.

    3. Cleveland Clinic. Thyroid Disease. Updated April 19, 2020.

    4. MedlinePlus. Hypothyroidism. Updated June 14, 2018.

    5. MedlinePlus. Hyperthyroidism. Updated June 14, 2018.

    6. NIDDKD. Thyroid disease and pregnancy. Updated December 2017.