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Old 07-29-2007, 09:59 AM   #1
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flygirl59 HB User
Question ?? on Hashimotos & Levoxyl

I just visited an endocrinologist in Denver and got started on Levoxyl. He said I should start losing the 60 lbs I've gained. All of my tests came back normal except for my thyroid peroxidase. It was 4X what it should be, which gave me the diagnosis of Hashimotos. He said so many Drs. make the mistake of not doing a thyroid peroxidase test to see if someone just has hypothyroidism or if it's actually Hashimotos (where your own immune system attacks and destroys your thyroid gland). He said if you actually have Hashimotos and you're being treated with the wrong meds then the Hashimotos is destoying the medication, too. He said Armour thyroid shouldn't even be used anymore, but should be on a shelf in a museum. I would appreciate any feedback I can get. I'm already feeling better, but am anxious to lose some weight, too. I'm on 50 MCG. Thanks....flygirl59

 
Old 07-29-2007, 12:27 PM   #2
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Re: ?? on Hashimotos & Levoxyl

Do you have hard copies of your lab results? If so, could you post those related to thyroid, please? (Name of lab, result, lab range). If you don't have a hard copy, ask for those. You are entitled to have those and should keep copies for your own records, for comparison down the line and for when you see other doctors, etc.

By "normal," I am guessing he meant the labs other than that antibody lab were within lab range. Many here, if they could see your actual numbers, might take exception to that "normal" designation, however, from experience with how we feel at different levels the lab ranges call normal.

I think he is saying, although, your other labs are in normal range, the antibodies could well cause symptoms of hypothyroid disorder and he is willing to treat those symptoms based on the high antibody count. I don't think anyone here would disagree with that and many who have been in that place and were unable to get treatment would consider you fortunate to have found a doctor willing to treat. We would all wish you well on your journey and there will always be fellow hypos here to support you when needed.

As for which med is used, IMO, at this point it matters little which is prescribed for you of the various brands available for treatment of hypothyroid disorder. Levoxyl is a fine choice. You'll find people here who take that, others who take Synthroid, Levothorid, Unithroid, or Armour, even other meds. You'll find people who feel well on all of those. Doctors don't all agreee on which one to use, but the important thing is that you get well. If he can make you well on Levoxyl, that's a good thing.

Quote:
He said so many Drs. make the mistake of not doing a thyroid peroxidase test to see if someone just has hypothyroidism or if it's actually Hashimotos (where your own immune system attacks and destroys your thyroid gland). He said if you actually have Hashimotos and you're being treated with the wrong meds then the Hashimotos is destoying the medication, too.


Hmmmm, if you are quoting your doctor accurately, I believe you would find his opinion quite unique among licensed, boarded, physicians with experience treating hypothyroidism. Most would consider the cause of the hypothyroid disorder inconsequential once treatment has begun, except in cases where the pituitary gland is involved where that cause may be of more serious consideration than the resulting hypothyroid symptoms.

Hashimotos antibodies do attack the thyroid gland and frequently succeed in killing it. At some point, if the attacks continue, the individual becomes truly hypothyroid by lab standards. Sometimes, however, the attacks stop, which is the reason why some doctors take a wait and see approach to treatment for hypothroid disorder.

I have never heard of Hashimotos destroying meds and have never heard of different meds being used for hypothyroid disorder, no matter what the cause might be. The majority of those with hypothyroid disorder, btw, are hypo because of those antibodies. There are other causes, but the treatment is the same. The meds used are the same. Levoxyl, for example, would be an appropriate choice regardless of the cause.

I wonder if he was actually telling you many doctors refuse to treat symptomatic Hashimotos patients until their hormone levels go out of range. That does occur and has frustrated many people who feel really bad.


Last edited by ErinBeth; 07-29-2007 at 12:30 PM.

 
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Old 07-30-2007, 08:40 AM   #3
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Re: ?? on Hashimotos & Levoxyl

I've never heard of Hashi's destroying meds. Would be interesting to see where he got that bit of info. Armour is a great product for some people. Many drs don't like it for some reason or another and some prefer it over the synthetics. You use what works best for you regardless of the drs opinion on a med.

 
Old 07-30-2007, 10:40 AM   #4
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Re: ?? on Hashimotos & Levoxyl

Quote:
Originally Posted by ErinBeth
You'll find people here who take that, others who take Synthroid, Levothorid, Unithroid, or Armour, even other meds. You'll find people who feel well on all of those. Doctors don't all agreee on which one to use....
Quote:
Originally Posted by dea4
Many drs don't like it for some reason or another and some prefer it over the synthetics. You use what works best for you regardless of the drs opinion on a med.
Very diplomatically put, ladies. Some - who shall remain nameless - would think flygirl's MD needs to be put in a museum.

Assuming the quotation is accurately reported, the business about Hashi's "destroying the medication" sounds like pure malarkey.

 
Old 07-30-2007, 12:04 PM   #5
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Re: ?? on Hashimotos & Levoxyl

Flygirl-

I already don't like your endo and I've never even met him.
Quote:
He said so many Drs. make the mistake of not doing a thyroid peroxidase test to see if someone just has hypothyroidism or if it's actually Hashimotos...
You may not know, but most people with hypO-T have Hashimoto's. Sometimes it's irrelevant.

Sometimes Hashi's patients fluctuate between hypO-T and hypER-T. Sometimes they don't. Sometimes people without Hashi's fluctuate between hypO-T and hypER-T due to too much medication or inconsistent medication or inconsistent diet with their medication or interference from other medications.

Discovering whether or not you have Hashi's is only important if you are suffering from hypO-T symptoms AND your TSH, FreeT4 and FreeT3 are all within the "normal" range AND your doctor is willing to treat your hypO-T symptoms just because you have Hashi's even though your other lab work isn't supporting a hypO-T diagnosis.
Quote:
...Hashimotos is destoying the medication, too.
I smell BS. Makes your doctor feel good to sound and look all doctory doesn't it? I bet he wears a white lab coat. I bet the nurses hate him.
Quote:
He said Armour thyroid shouldn't even be used anymore, but should be on a shelf in a museum.
My endo doesn't like Armour thyroid either - because it is an old method of treating hypO-T. It's old, my doctor is young. In his mind younger is better, newer is better. It's a personality fault, but I still allow him to be my endo regardless. However, if I ever wanted to try Armour I would insist on it and argue for it and his personality fault and personal beliefs would not stop me. Sometimes old school works. It was and has been around for years and years for a reason, it works for some people. (NOTE: I'm not taking Armour and have no plans to change to it any time soon.)
Quote:
I would appreciate any feedback I can get. I'm already feeling better, but am anxious to lose some weight, too.
You didn't mention whether you were suffering from any other hypO-T symptoms other than weight gain. The weight doesn't just fall off because you start treatment. I've been on Levoxyl for 4 months and I've lost 19 pounds, but it's a struggle. I have to eat healthy and responsibly every day and I must exercise at least 4 days a week to continue to lose weight. My weight fluctuates every week due to the ongoing battle with water retention that is a symptom of hypO-T and just won't seem to go away. My lab results show that I am improving (TSH is closer to optimal, Free T4 and Free T3 are getting better). Don't expect that your excess weight will just fall off because of the thyroid medication. You will have to work hard, but I encourage you to do so instead of becoming one of those people that blames their excess weight on their thyroid condition. There are people with hypO-T that are healthy weight. On the bright side, if you are suffering from other hypO-T symptoms, you might notice those disappearing faster than the excess weight.

The last bit of feedback I'd like to offer:

Don't fall for "other tests came back normal". When you have your next lab tests you won't have actual numbers to compare it to, and you won't know whether or not the medicine is helping you slightly, dramatically or not at all. Call your endo and ask for the lab results to be mailed or faxed to you.

If you are not scheduled for labs again in 6 or 8 weeks, you should be.

Thyroid for Dummies by Dr. Alan Rubin is a great book, very informative.

Best wishes to you.

 
Old 07-30-2007, 12:16 PM   #6
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Re: ?? on Hashimotos & Levoxyl

[QUOTE=Clarissa234;3127016]

I smell BS. Makes your doctor feel good to sound and look all doctory doesn't it? I bet he wears a white lab coat. I bet the nurses hate him. [QUOTE]

Hilarious. I like the part about the nurses hating him, ha

[QUOTE=Clarissa234;3127016]
My endo doesn't like Armour thyroid either - because it is an old method of treating hypO-T. It's old, my doctor is young.
[QUOTE]

My dr doesn't like Armour or Nature Throid either, but he will prescribe it because it works for me. (I only take a small amount with added T4) He told me some drs will not prescribe a med they don't like even if the patient does well on it. I have a friend this happened to. She did well on a certain thyroid med and the dr she was seeing refused to prescribe it and actually told her it was because she didn't like it. What a great dr

Last edited by dea4; 07-30-2007 at 12:17 PM.

 
Old 07-31-2007, 03:24 PM   #7
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Clarissa234 HB User
Re: ?? on Hashimotos & Levoxyl

I think I was having a snarky Hashimoto's moment there when I responded to the original post.

Yeah, I would take Armour if I thought I needed to. My endo doesn't like it but he wouldn't refuse to prescribe it either. Sometimes you have to think of your doctor's visit as being more like an interview of the doctor instead of a visit to the healer.

 
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