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Old 11-27-2004, 07:12 AM   #1
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Question Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Hi all...
Been doing some research on Armour. I'm still taking my Levoxyl and cytomel combo and may as well not be taking anything because I'm still feeling bloated some days, my muscles are still "popping" and "twitching"...even when I in the bed, my skin and hair is still dry and itchy. I have been on Levoxyl for years and have done fine until a couple of months ago. Now my doc has added Cytomel and while I think that's helped to relieve brain fog, physically I still feel a bit fatigued (but not too much) and all the other things above and I still having lost any weight I was thinking of trying Armour. Maybe my body has become "to used" or immune to the synthetic hormones...don't know..just guessing Anyone taking Armour? How's it working for you? Why's it natural, because it comes from a pig? Is that good? Any input is much appreciated! Thanks!
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Old 11-27-2004, 07:21 AM   #2
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

HI Lucy, I am taking Armour and doing really great!!! I am even losing some weight. Started taking it November 1 this month. I don't get cold anymore, have lots of energy, not depressed, not constipated, temperature has gone up.

I was not on any meds before Armour. You should try it too. Of course I had to order mine because the doctor would not put me on any meds. You know going by just the TSH. Like many doctors.
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Old 11-27-2004, 08:00 AM   #3
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Lady and chris,
Thanks for your reponses! I'm glad you're both doing SO well! I've discovered that since I now know more, I'm not willing to "settle" for just feeling "so-so" - I want to feel terrific! And if that means switching meds, then that's fine. I'm not sure if my doctor will prescribe Armour. I'm due to go back to her next month. I spoke with pharmacist at my drugstore and they carry Armour. She told me she just filled one for a patient whose doc ordered it. If necessary, I'll find our who that doctor is and go to him/her. Have either of you had any side effects from Armour? I've truthfully never heard of it until coming to this board last month. Before then, all I knew was synthroid and levoxyl
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Old 11-27-2004, 09:36 AM   #4
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

I have been on armour (75mcg) for almost a year now. This was after taking levoxyl for five months. I have had much better success on armour. I still have minor bouts of fatigue and will probably ask that my dosage be bumped up to 90 mcg. Other than that, everything is good.
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Old 11-27-2004, 09:56 AM   #5
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

I have a question for all of you Armour users...

My endo said she doesn't prescribe Armour anymore because her patients' results in the past were often "toxic." What could she mean by this? I didn't ask her, but I should have.

I'm really glad to hear that you all are doing so well with the Armour!

 
Old 11-27-2004, 10:08 AM   #6
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

I had an allergic reaction to armour...my ears got red and swollen - itcy - i couldn't stay awake - my heart was feeling - well, just weird...like it wasn't beating ENOUGH - I was freezing worse than when I wasn't on armour....I stayed on it for two weeks and thought I was going to die....am on levoxyl and cytomel now and doing much better -

 
Old 11-27-2004, 11:13 AM   #7
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Bottom line is different things work for different people. If you aren't feeling right, thinking it's going to get better by just doing the same old thing is ridiculous.

I was on levoxyl for a year and it made me feel awful. Armour made a huge difference.
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Old 11-27-2004, 12:07 PM   #8
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Thanks everyone for your responses. I guess it's right...everyone is different and we just have to find what works good for us. My Levox/cytomel combo is NOT helping me right now...doesn't even feel like I'm taking anything. I'm reluctant about change...but I've come to learn that it's usually for the best so I'm going to ask her for a script for Amour. Thanx all!
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Old 11-27-2004, 04:23 PM   #9
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Why do you think some docs are hesitant or just flat out refuse to prescribe Armour or any other natural thyroid hormone? Do they believe it doesn't work or is the synthetic hormones just more convenient? I had NO idea that there was anything else other than synthroid or levoxyl. Do you believe most people do better on some form of T3 as well as T4? I read an article on line from New England Journal of Medicine saying that most people do better when some form of T3 is added...what do you all think?
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Old 11-28-2004, 07:44 AM   #10
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lostgrrl
I had an allergic reaction to armour...my ears got red and swollen - itcy - i couldn't stay awake - my heart was feeling - well, just weird...like it wasn't beating ENOUGH - I was freezing worse than when I wasn't on armour....I stayed on it for two weeks and thought I was going to die....am on levoxyl and cytomel now and doing much better -
Hmmm...perhaps this is the type of reaction that's prompted my endo (and many others, apparently) to refuse to prescribe Armour?

 
Old 11-28-2004, 10:15 AM   #11
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LucyPearl
Do they believe it doesn't work or is the synthetic hormones just more convenient? ... I read an article on line from New England Journal of Medicine saying that most people do better when some form of T3 is added...what do you all think?
They believe T3 isn't necessary, and that everyone has the ability to convert as much T4 into T3 as they need from the synthetic T4 supplied. This is patently untrue. Most people have at least a small degree of a conversion problem, and many have a large conversion problem. Supplying some T3 is the only way around it. If you read the works of Dr. Ridha Arem, Dr. John Lowe, Dr. Kenneth Blanchard, Dr. Richard Shames, Dr. Toft, Dr. John Dommisse, Dr. Mercola, et. al. ... you'll be convinced this is true for the majority of hypoT patients.
Quote:
Originally Posted by LovesTeaching
Hmmm...perhaps this is the type of reaction that's prompted my endo (and many others, apparently) to refuse to prescribe Armour?
One huge reason most endos and GPs won't prescribe Armour is political. They were educated in medical schools where the endocrine departments receive large contributions by the makers of Synthroid. Guess which drug will receive endorsement over any other? Also, when Synthroid first arrived on the scene in the 1940's, doctors were given lucrative incentives to prescribe it over Armour. [Hmmm, does that sound familiar? $$$] They were sold on the idea that T4 is all a patient needs, because the body will convert as much as it needs to T3.
Armour was denounced as dirty, because of its animal source. Patients were urged, as a way of selling them, to switch to the nice, clean product from a lab instead of a pig. As the decades have gone by, doctors have passed the misinformation down to the succeeding generations, to most patients' detriment.
Today, because they've not been educated about Armour's clear benefit over synthetics, they have no idea about dosing and monitoring of treatment with T4/T3 drugs. Instead of admitting to this degree of ignorance, they keep on doing what they've been brainwashed into doing.

Every synthetic T4 drug on the market today, with the exception of Unithroid, have had numerous recalls for subpotency issues. Armour has never been recalled since its first use in 1892. Modern manufacturing processes ensure exact titration... apparently much more exact than its synthetic cousins.

Edited to add: I forgot to say I was started on Synthroid two years ago. My TSH went from nearly 7 to .02 within six weeks of the small starting dose. It hit me like a ton of bricks. The dose was reduced to the smallest possible, and it still made me hyper. The endo told me to stop taking it, and to see her in three months, because she had no idea what else to try. I knew then she didn't know what she was doing, and because I had learned on this Board about the existence of Armour, I took myself to a doctor I knew would prescribe it for me. I've had no problems going hyper with it, and it is sooooo much gentler on the system than Synthroid, I can't even describe it.

I will stop short of saying Armour is for everyone. It isn't. But I will say that it's probably better for most people, and if you're not getting well on a synthetic, Armour is worth a try.

Last edited by midwest1; 11-28-2004 at 10:23 AM.

 
Old 11-28-2004, 10:55 AM   #12
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Midwest,
Thank you for your very thorough response. You're so knowledgable and I appreciate you sharing your information! I'm learning something new everyday! I could kick myself that it's taken me sooo long to be informed. But the truth is that I was doing ok on my synthetic t4 for many years...now I guess it's time to consider a change so I'm being educated in the process..thanks to you and other very well informed members I am presently reading "Is Your Thyroid Making You Fat" by Dr. Sanford Seigel. It's a very interesting book and it is obvious that Dr. Seigel is a long time advocate of natural thyroid hormone. I will also look into the other Drs that you suggested. I believe Mary Shomon is also a supporter of adding T3 (not sure if she uses natural or not). I'm willing to give it a try. I just wonder why my body has suddenly (or maybe gradually) stopped responding so well to the T4 I've been taking all these years? I guess nothing lasts forever, right? Midwest, do you have any negative side effects from your Armour? Was weight gain ever an issue for you? If so, have you been successful in losing any? You're right about the politics, too...It always seems to come down to the all mighty dollar, doesn't it? How sad for us as patients...we'd better wake up and learn as much as we can about our bodies and become more assertive. We're our own best advocates!
Thanks
LucyPearl

 
Old 11-28-2004, 11:32 AM   #13
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Quote:
I just wonder why my body has suddenly (or maybe gradually) stopped responding so well to the T4 I've been taking all these years?
I can only venture a guess, and it's that you may now have the kind of conversion problem that I talked about earlier. Or maybe other homonal systems are negatively impacting the way you're using the T4. An excess of estrogen, for example, interferes with thyroid hormone absorption. Perimenopause (if that's an issue with you) upsets the sex hormone balance, and that can affect the thyroid hormones, too. I guess "why" is really anyone's bet guess.
Quote:
Midwest, do you have any negative side effects from your Armour? Was weight gain ever an issue for you? If so, have you been successful in losing any?
No negative effect whatsoever. Not now, and not even at the start. I've seen a few reports here that the T3 in Armour can cause a 'buzz' effect for a couple of hours after it's taken... that the pulse rate is temporarily elevated, anxiety is slightly increased... but nothing happened to me. Some say their hair begins to drop, but I think this is a temporary effect, caused by the hormone levels abruptly changing. More people have reported that they continue to lose hair while in treatment with Synthroid, and it seems unrelated to changing levels. Indeed, Synthroid reports hair loss as a side effect in their Rx'ing information, and I don't think they say it's temporary.

Weight has fortunately not been much of an issue with me as it relates to hypoT. It played a role in my self-diagnosis, though. In an attempt to reduce my borderline cholesterol without resorting to the drugs my MD was pushing, I changed my diet and started brisk, daily tread mill walking. Weight loss wasn't really a goal, as I'm only slightly overweight and not much bothered by it; but I noticed after 6 months on my new program, I'd only lost 4 pounds. From past history, I realized the changes I made should've resulted in at least a 15 pound loss. The changes made no difference in my cholesterol, either. Eventually I learned that the failure to lose and the unresponsive cholesterol were probably due to low thyroid.

 
Old 11-28-2004, 01:08 PM   #14
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Re: Anyone on Armour? How's it working for you?

Midwest,
Yep. I think I'm very much in Perimenopause. I just turned 45 recently and it seem like all hell broke loose with my thyroid! It seems like up to then I was doing o.k. I suspected perimenopause almost right away...from my moods,etc. Then my thyroid became an issue after all these years. I think you may be right...probably one hormone impacting another. Maybe I was able to convert better before and now need more help. You're lucky weight isn't a problem for you. I, too, have a slightly elevated cholesterol level inspite of regular exercise and healthy eating. I didn't realize until recently that there was a link between cholesterol and hypothyroidism. NONE of my docs EVER mentioned this. Why not??! Instead they just told me to keep exercising and watch what I eat. Heck, I'd lost almost 70lbs and was exercising all the time...didn't they realize? I certainly didn't. Oh well...we live and learn. I tell you what, though, I'm currently on 5mg of Cytomel - never had t3 before only t4. I can tell it makes a difference for me for the better. I don't have the "brain fog" I was having and my moods are so much better...I feel happier and much less depressed. Midwest, I'm not sure if it's the perimenopause stuff or thyroid stuff that's been making me crazy Maybe a bit of both, huh? My sister also is hypo - had thyroidectomy couple of years ago. She's just been recently dx'd with bi-polar. I've read that there's a strong link between bi-polar and hypo. My endo even mentioned it and asked about a family hx of it. When I mentioned that my sis had it, she said that may be something we'd discuss later. NO! I'm not going there with her! It seems like it's easier to prescribe me with bipolar meds and write me off as a little "looney" then to deal with me being assertive and knowledgeable. My sister admits that she fits the bill of bi-polar and I'll admit that to some extent I MIGHT also...but the symptoms of bi-polar are VERY similar to a un/under treated hypo patient in my opinion...so I don't know. You know what I figure...in 20 years who's gonna care? I sure won't! I'll be 65 (my mother's age now) and probably just as sassy as she is! She says she's earned the right at her age to say just what's on her mind and she does!! not take crap for anyone and she doesn't!! Her thyroid is fine and she's not bipolar! So....God spare my life, I live to 65 and my thyroid still acting "funky" off and on...well too bad, by that time I'm be old enough to say "take me as I am!!"....heck...I'm ALMOST there now!
LucyPearl

 
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