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Old 04-25-2005, 07:44 PM   #1
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Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

I just visited my Endo today and my levels are fine but he wants to switch me from Cytomel to Synthroid because I'm still having hairloss and he doesn't like Cytomel because he feels it's not accurate enough. I was on Synthroid before and became hyperthroid but he wants me to go on the lowest dose and split that in half. I asked him about Armour and he doesn't like that either. I'm a little concerned about going back on Synthroid. Has anybody else switched to Synthroid? Is it better then Cytomel? He says I'm the only one in his practice thats on Cytomel. It just seems like he's pushing Synthroid and I'm not sure if he's looking out for my best interest. I'm not sure if I should switch or not.

 
Old 04-25-2005, 08:19 PM   #2
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

I too, went hyper on the smallest dose of Synthroid. The endo wanted me to stop it altogether and wait another 3 months untreated before trying again. She definitely was a Synthroid-pusher who wouldn't try anything else, even if the patient can't tolerate it. But I didn't wait. Went to another doctor to get Armour, and I've not been hyper in the 1 1/4 years while taking it.
I don't blame you for not wanting to do that again. But apparently, your doctor doesn't know how to do anything else, and he doesn't want to learn anything new. Can you switch MDs?

Last edited by midwest1; 04-25-2005 at 08:21 PM.

 
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Old 04-26-2005, 02:30 AM   #3
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

I've actually thought about switching doctors and I guess now maybe I should to get a second opinion. For some reason alot of doctors don't want to prescribe Armour, why is that? My doctor is totally against it. The nurse practitioner doesn't think I need to be on anything at all but the doctor told her to switch to Synthroid. She told me if I go hyper with this that I should just stop everything and see how I do. I just wish my hairloss would stop. I feel o.k. its just my hair won't stop falling out.

 
Old 04-26-2005, 07:50 AM   #4
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

Have you ever had your Ferritin levels checked? This is a measure of stored iron in your system. I f your levels are below 50 or so, you will not be able to tolerate thyroid medicines (T4) and you can go hyper on small doses of Synthroid.

Low Ferritin can mimic signs of hypothyroidism with normal lab tests. Some suggest that a ferritin level of 70-100 is ideal for a person with thyroid disease.

But, it does sound like you need to find a better doctor. If you felt well on Cytomel, I'd guess that you are not converting T4 to T3 very well and the straight T4 medicine will not relieve all of your symptoms.

There have been false rumors that Armour is 1) an old fashioned medication, 2) not consistent from dose to dose, 3) isn't as good as Synthroid and 4) thyroid patients don't need the T3 in Armour. I wonder who is telling doctors these lies? Armour is the best medicine I have found so far to treat my disease.

 
Old 04-27-2005, 02:43 AM   #5
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Question Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

I don't think I've ever had my Ferritin levels checked. I've had so many labs done in the past 2 years I'm not quite sure what ones they've done. Has anybody every felt hyper on Cytomel? My levels are fine but I feel very uneasy like I can't relax. I'm also having a hard time sleeping and my heart is seems to be beating faster then normal. The doctor tried to tell me that it could be from the Cytomel.

 
Old 04-27-2005, 04:14 AM   #6
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

Yes, your symptoms sound to me like you have too much T3 in your system, a direct result of taking too much Cytomel. You say your levels are fine, can you post your blood test results with their ranges? I suspect that your Free T3 levels are too high in their range for you, maybe even over the top of the range.

How do you feel if you decerease your dose of Cytomel a smidgen for about 3 days?

 
Old 04-28-2005, 02:50 AM   #7
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

My levels are TSH - 4.6 and my T-3 - 5.3. The doctor told me that these levels are right where they want them but maybe their not right for me. I take the lowest dose of Cytomel 2x a day and I've never decreased it. The nurse practitioner thinks I should stop everything but the doctor said no and switched me to Synthroid.

 
Old 04-28-2005, 04:04 AM   #8
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

Yes, you need another doctor. A TSH of 4.6 is NOT OK! I feel awful at 2.7, and most people without thyroid disease have a TSH around 1.

What is the range for your T3 test? Also, is that Free T3 or Total T3? My lab's range for a Free T3 test is 2.6-4.2. A score of 5.3 on that test would put me severely hyperthyroid, way over the top of the range.

 
Old 04-28-2005, 12:50 PM   #9
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

I understood that you can take Cytomel and Synthroid together. I have seen studies that adding Cytomel to Synthroid or other T4 med helps some women with anxiety/depression. Am I incorrect?
Thanks,
b

 
Old 04-28-2005, 03:32 PM   #10
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

diatron, that was a free t-3. I'm a little confused though I thought the higher it was then you were hypo is it the other way around? Maybe that explains why I feel like I can't relax. I feel uncomfortable and can't sleep at night. Could that be the reason? I'm confused now by what my labs mean. Can somebody explain what they mean?

Jzzlvr13, I work with a lady that is on both Synthroid and Cytomel but she is also taking Xanax but she has alot of problems going on in her life so I'm not sure if it's her meds or her life.

 
Old 04-29-2005, 05:10 AM   #11
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

If your lab measures Free T3 with the same range as mine, yes, the extra Cytomel is causing your symptoms. Usually, if your Free T3 or Free T4 test results is over the top of the range for your lab, you are hyperthyroid. But with hyperthyroidism your TSH is usually very low as well. Your TSH indicates that you are hypOthyroid. But, if you took your dose of Cytomel a few hours before getting your blood drawn, that may have artificially raised the Free T3 results. I do not take my thyroid meds until after I have my blood drawn. You have symptoms of hyperthyroidism, so that may not apply.

Something else is going on and you definitely need a new doctor to help you figure it out. I might guess that your adrenal glands are not functioning properly. or maybe there is a problem with your pituitary gland (that produces TSH) that keeps it pumping out signals to tell your thyroid to keep producing more hormones. Or it might just mean that your body is very good at converting T4 to T3. Or that you have a lot of thyroid binding globulins. Or that your estrogen and progesterone levels are out of balance. Your body is a closed feedback system, too much of any one hormone will affect the way all the other hormones function--and how you feel. You may need a complete hormone workup by a doctor that knows how to interpret the results. This gets very complicated.

But, it might be just as simple as just stopping the Cytomel. Your test results indicate that you do not need it. Can you do that, just take the Synthroid, and then go back in 6 weeks for blood tests. That may be the easiest way to try to get a handle on what your body is trying to tell you. If you change too much too fast, you confuse your body, yourself and your doctors.

Last edited by diatron; 04-29-2005 at 05:18 AM.

 
Old 04-29-2005, 05:14 AM   #12
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

Jzzlvr13:

Yes, the addition of Synthroid and/or Cytomel can really help some people with depression. Of course this depression has to be caused by an imbalance in the thyroid hormones. I was on antidepressants for years, but once i started thyroid replacement therapy for 8 months I was able to stop taking them. Was all my depression caused by lack of thyroid hormones? Maybe, Maybe not. I just know that it has worked for me now.

 
Old 04-29-2005, 06:04 AM   #13
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

Thanks for the input. I have been on Synthroid for over thirty years because of a goiter. I had no problems with symptoms, even when my TSH began to bounce all over the place, probably because of menopause. It went from 3 to 17 to.05 in a year...with no symptoms. When I came off of a narcotic pain reliever last summer my problems began...anxiety, hot flashes, blood pressure, stomach problems, cystitis, etc....bad summer. I had all the hormones checked but it turned out to be thyroid... .15. By November it was back up to .87 with changes in synthroid and I felt OK. Then an operation, morphene, pain reliever and return of anxiety. Not as bad as the summer, but EVERY morning. My TSH is now 3.2, hypo on the new scale.
I want to try adding Cytomel, bring my TSH back closer to 1.0 and see how I feel. I think my thyroid has become much more sensitive with three major surgerys, narcotic pain meds, and menopause over the last couple of years and want to treat the symptoms with thyroid meds before I have to go to big time anxiety meds.

 
Old 04-29-2005, 06:20 AM   #14
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

Thanks for the input. I have been on Synthroid for over thirty years because of a goiter. I had no problems with symptoms, even when my TSH began to bounce all over the place, probably because of menopause. It went from 3 to 17 to.05 in a year...with no symptoms. When I came off of a narcotic pain reliever last summer my problems began...anxiety, hot flashes, blood pressure, stomach problems, cystitis, etc....bad summer. I had all the hormones checked but it turned out to be thyroid... .15. By November it was back up to .87 with changes in synthroid and I felt OK. Then an operation, morphene, pain reliever and return of anxiety. Not as bad as the summer, but EVERY morning. My TSH is now 3.2, hypo on the new scale.
I want to try adding Cytomel, bring my TSH back closer to 1.0 and see how I feel. I think my thyroid has become much more sensitive with three major surgerys, narcotic pain meds, and menopause over the last couple of years and want to treat the symptoms with thyroid meds before I have to go to big time anxiety meds.

 
Old 04-30-2005, 05:42 AM   #15
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Re: Switching From Cytomel To Synthroid

diatron, I've also thought about a hormome imbalance but I'm having a hard time finding a doctor who will check it or who knows anything about it. One doctor told me there's no sense in checking it because it's not accurate and the other doctor told me that I don't have a problem because my periods are too regular. I've been extremly moody lately one day I'll be the happiest person in the world and the next I'll feel extremly depressed but one doctor told me that it's just PMS and either take anti-depressants or the birth control pill but nothing was ever checked. It's very frustrating and very hard to find a good doctor. I have been to several already and they make you feel like your going crazy. You know what you feel but then they tell you your fine.

 
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