I have been dx with Hashimoto's thyroiditis. I was dx with this over 15 years ago, and received tx for it at the time. Later, I was told I did not have any antibodies, and did not need to take thyroid any longer. That was the start of my decline in health, energy and quality of life. My bodily functions did not seem to work right, after d/c the thyroid. I got weaker and weaker, developed bladder incontinence problems along with severe constipation, muscle pains , dry eyes and mouth, severe problems with my periods etc. I also started to gain a lot of weight, which is not normal for me. Now, I have been told I have Hashimoto's, and most likely had it all along. I was started on levothroid, it did nothing but help reduce the pains I had been getting in my legs in feet...temporarily. I finally found another doc, who put be on armour. I began to feel much better. My muscle pains decreased, energy increased, bladder problems some what better, memory better and lost 15-20 lbs? I felt so much better.! HOwever, I noticed my pulse rate had increased, and my bp also had elevated, and my finger nails were becoming very brittle, and my hair was falling out. My physician freaked, told me I had "cardiac problems", and refused to treat me any longer. I did manage to find a doc who is holistic and claims to be an expert in thyroid and endocrine problems. He put me on some cytomel, in addition to the armour, as my T3 was below normal. We have been working on increasing my armour dose. However, my bp and pulse rate have gotten much worse. It seems the thyroid meds maybe exaccerbating the problem for some reason. I tells me my body really needs more thyroid. So... my pcp put me on 25mg of Toprol XL. My bp has gone down, but my pulse had pretty much remained the same. Because of the problems I have now with my bp ( can be as high as 200/100,and pulse rate runs to over 110 b/m. The holistic doc seems freaked. He told me; "You know you are not easy to treat." I feel he trying to make me feel guilty for the medical problems I have, and he is now apparently unsure how to proceed. I don't think this is fair or healthy to do to a patient. He should assume some responsibility. It is not my fault my body reacts the way it does. He doesn't seem to know how to proceed. He told me my body needs more thyroid, but does not appear to be able to handle it. When I have asked him why, I get no answers. Also, I have gained back 10 lbs I lost, inspite of a good diet and exercise. I can't seem to loose weight. It just comes. My pcp tells me my weight is from the physiological doses of hydrocortisone I take for adrenal fatigue per Dr. MC Jeffries book," Safe Uses OF Cortisol." "Meeps", a senior moderator told me as well I should not be gaining weight. She told me the weight gain was most likely caused from hyothyroidism. After she told me this, I did find out I was hypo and also had Hashi again. The last time I saw him(holistic doc), he told me to try to raise the armour by 1 grain. I did, and my bp and pulse went quite high. I feel I have to increase my toprol beta-blocker. Is this something I should consider doing? I want to know why I have the bp and pulse problem. My echocardiogram and electrocardiogram were normal. Is my condition dangerous? What do you think is going on? What tests do you think I should have done at this point? How does one treat symptoms of both hypo and hyper thyroid? I am feeling very frustrated. I have already invested so much money and time in all this. How do I get the Holistic doc to manage more of my care?
I am so sorry this is so long, but I just had to give the background of my problems. I hope it helps you to help me!
I am no expert here, but here are a few of my thoughts: When you were on the levothroid did you have the high pulse problem? If you didn't then perhaps you needed to stick with it, and even raise it a bit...or add T3 to that med instead of switching. And what was your dose then? Was it possible that levothroid was actually good for you (some symptoms did disappear) but just needed to be adjusted? I am wondering if you are one of those cases that does not do well on Armour...it is made of pig glands, and perhaps that does not agree with you. Also, see if you have any food triggers....I have a few that cause high pulse for a while in me. Since the pulse problem started with the Armour (or did you also start something else at the same time?) you may want to go off it and on to another med for a while and see if the pulse problem resolves itself. Hope this helps....BTW it is not YOUR FAULT, by the way, who can help it if they are sick...you doctor should be more careful...hang in there...hope this helps.
I have Hashi's, and started Armour last September. I was just newly dx, after suffering for over 16 years with the symptoms you describe that you developed after being taken off your thyroid meds. I was way too eager to get to feeling better, so I increased my dose way too fast, and at one point was taking 480mg/day! Even with all that, my blood pressure was normal. I had some sweating, and some occassional palpitations, but that was all. Even so, my doc lowered me way back down to 180mg/day.
The point is, my bp was always low, and never went high, so if it is the Armour that is affecting you that way, maybe you should look at a lower dose (you don't say what dose you're on). I am shocked the holistic doc would give you more T3, as that is usually what aggravates some of the heart problems seen in some people, but then, I don't know what your Free T3 level was. It's just that, usually, with Armour, the Free T3 is high in relation to the Free T4, which is why some people add T4 to their Armour. Armour can cause hair to fall out, at least at first. It happens with me every time I adjust my dose.
Also, you don't say what thyroid treatment you received for the last 15 years, before they took you off it. It must have been working for you, because you didn't develop some of the severe hashi/hypo symptoms until they took you off it. Can you go back to that? Or, as pixiek says, try the levothyroid at a different dose.
Sorry I'm not much help. It just surprises me that the Armour would increase your bp so much, unless you are allergic to it or reacting to it somehow. Have others on Armour had a problem with it increasing bp?
When I was previously treated for Hashi, I was on levothroid. After a point in my treatment, I must have developed high bp and maybe pulse as well. I do not remember exactly, but I do recall being placed on niphedipine, which is a drug that lowers blood pressure. I also recall having a fine hand tremor at times, in one hand. Before being treated, my bp was low. In anycase, it seems I probably had this reaction in the past when being treated for Hashi. as well. Is it possible to be both hyper and hypo? What would cause this? I don't think it is a reaction to the Armour now, as I also had it on levothroid. I was on levoxyl as well, and did not do well at all. I was even more fatigued, gained weight, and had severe pains down my legs. Then, a bunch of spider like veins came out on my legs. I don't know what was going on. I know I also have a vasospastic disorder. It usually causes vasodilation in the extremeties, causing redness in the palms and fingers, and soles of the feet. I feel like I am on fire. It gets worse in warm rooms or climate. Before this, I used to have Raynauds. ..which is the opposite reaction. The extremities turn cold and maybe bluish-white, due to lack of circulation. The beta blocker I am on tends to help with the former reaction. Can anyone please tell me what might be going on with me. Is it possible to have symptoms of hypo and hyper? What causes this? What should I do, if anything. ( On some posts I have read, I see others have experienced hypo and hyper symptoms in hashi, and were told this can be all from the hashi? Is this true?
Also, the reason I am on cytomel as well as armour, is because I am below normal with free T3, even on the armour.
It's possible to have symptoms of both hypo and hyper at the same time with Hashi's. The reason this can happen is that, as the antibodies succeed in killing off thyroid cells, those cells, which are filled with thyroid hormone, release hormone into the bloodstream as they die off. So, you might be generally hypo, but as some thyroid cells die, it shoots thyroid hormone into the blood, giving you a "rush" feeling of being hyper. This can go on as long as you have some functioning thyroid cells left.
This is the way I understand it, and it makes sense to me. At least it explains why I've experienced hyper symptoms in the midst of more general hypo symptoms.
I'm sorry, I don't know about the other symptoms you have. I get terrible flushing in the face, neck, shoulders, and also redness in the palms and feet, with burning, when I am very low in thyroid and estrogen. Taking thyroid, and bio-identical estradiol and progesterone has helped that enormously. But I'm not sure if it's the same as what you are experiencing. (The docs also thought I had Reynaud's once). I was also on a narcotic for pain after a surgery that exacerbated the flushing and burning of my skin - is it possible that something you are taking is making your vasodilation worse?
Hello! Thanks for your reply. I seemed to notice the redness became much worse when I when I Biest (natural estrogen). I also felt like my whole body was on fire. It is somewhat better in that respect now. However, my holistic doc, just took me off the Biest and increased my DHEA. He seems to think it will help with the vasospasms. He said the estrogen was not that good for the heart, as well. I was getting terrible sweats, but he said increased thyroid hormone would help this. I am really upset, because I have gained back 10 pounds in the last few months since working with him. I have a good diet and exercise, yet the pounds just seem to come!!!!. I am so frustrated.! I need more thyroid, and time for my body to adjust to these hormonal changes. I don't know what a reasonable time is however? My doc guages my medication needs based on my symptoms foremost. He has a baseline of hormone values taken a few months ago. In the meantime, he relies on symptoms, intuition and ankle and ocular changes to light to detect status of thyroid and adrenals. He must know what he is doing. He has written several books, and both his wife and some of his children also have Hashi. Could I be gaining weight from d/c the biest? Estrogen competes with thyroid at receptor sites, and therefore,. prevents the full expression of thyroid hormone. Also, the natural progesterone cream I take is suppose to help with thyroid function. Also the DHEA is supposed to work on reducing body fat, and therefore, weight. However, to date, I still haven't lost. It has only been a few weeks, is that long enough to notice weight loss? Please let me hear back from you. Thanks
The biest helped my redness, or at least getting a better ratio between estradiol and progesterone is what helped me. I notice that if I take too much biest, and the ratio is upset, I get red. If I quit taking biest, and the ratio is upset, I get red. So, for me, the redness is somehow related to my hormone balance. I had no redness, ever, prior to going through menopause, and it has worsened since my total hysterectomy/oophrectomy a few weeks ago. Still trying to get it back under control. I generally take my biest at least 4 hours after I take the thyroid hormone, so there is not competition for receptor sites. I can lose weight only by exercising, even on thyroid hormone. Prior to getting on thyroid, I was gaining, like you, even with dieting and exercising. But, I became so fatigued I couldn't even walk, so I gained 70 pounds in 2 years. Since going on thyroid hormone, I've started to lose that, but it's slow going. The DHEA didn't help me lose weight at all, but at the time I was taking a narcotic for pain, and I believe that slowed my metabolism down so much I couldn't lose weight even with hormone replacement. Until I went off the narcotic, I couldn't lose a pound no matter what I did. I've lost 18 pounds in 2 months just since going off the pain pills.
I'm surprised your doc said that increasing the thyroid hormone would help the sweats. Usually, it's too much hormone (if you were hypothyroid) that causes sweats, and too little hormone makes you cold. I get sweaty when I first increase my dose of Armour, until my body adjusts to the new dose.
It just seems to me that your doc should be doing some additional blood tests to see where you actually are - it's better than guessing.