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Old 07-23-2009, 02:11 PM   #1
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switching from generic to brand

Hi,

I just had my 6 week blood tests after being on generic levoxyl 25 mcg. My TSH was 4 and I still don't feel well, so the doctor upped it to 50mcg, but changed from generic to Synthroid brand due to side effects mostly heart palps.

I was wondering what if any effects this will have on me. I'm anxious about upping the dose because of the palps. Can I split the pill and take it 2x a day to start?

Thanks in advance

 
Old 07-25-2009, 09:44 PM   #2
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Re: switching from generic to brand

I would say you're having palpatations because your dose was so woefully inadequate. Twenty-five mcgs is not considered a true therapeutic dose. It's only enough to reduce TSH a bit while not raising the thyroid hormone levels at all. (It could actually be lowering the TH levels!)

All T4 meds are slow-acting. Splitting them isn't likely to help anything.

Just consider that the kind of palps one gets when adjusting thyroid dosages aren't dangerous unless you already have heart disease or are over 65. Try to ignore them while you increase your dose to a level that will do you some actual good.

Understand that while you're looking for your optimal dose that old symptoms can get worse or new ones can appear. Your body has gone a long time without enough hormone; it's kind of a shock to it to finally get some. It has to figure out what to do with it now!

Last edited by midwest1; 07-25-2009 at 09:45 PM.

 
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Old 07-26-2009, 07:00 AM   #3
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Re: switching from generic to brand

Please take some time to read a bunch of posts here and learn about this disease and your treatment options.

The fact that your doc appears to be using your TSH numbers to treat you is a big sign of very poor treatment. You need to arm yourself with lots and lots of information and either try to educate your doc as to how to properly treat hypothyroidism or find a doctor who knows how.

Ask your doc to order a Free T3 and Free T4 as well as check your vitiamin D, B12, and ferritin levels, for starts. If he balks then you need to think about finding one who is more open minded and who actually listens to his/her patients.

 
Old 07-26-2009, 07:25 AM   #4
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Re: switching from generic to brand

Thanks for your replies.

I'm still learning alot about this hypothyroid stuff!!

My doctor did check the all of those levels you mentioned, and they were all "normal" except ferritin was on the low side so I'm supplementing.

I don't know how to tell if my free T3 and T4 are where they should be. When I had my original bloodwork before starting meds they were:

T4: 8.0 range 4.5-12.0
T3: 116 range 85-205

I don't have the copy of my six weeks labs, I will be getting them and will be able to compare.

Thanks again.

 
Old 07-26-2009, 07:33 AM   #5
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Re: switching from generic to brand

Do those T4/T3 labs say "free" in front of them? If they aren't freeT3 or free T4 then they aren't nearly as useful as just T3 or T4. Many docs don't know the right tests to order unfortunately.

 
Old 07-26-2009, 09:30 AM   #6
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Re: switching from generic to brand

No Mcaimless, it doesn't say free.

It's so frustrating to think that the doctor who is supposed to know what he's doing isn't! If it weren't for these boards I'd be totally clueless. I do have an appointment in three weeks to see an endocrinologist. What should I ask him to check to make sure he's knowledgeable, without bruising his ego?!

Thanks

 
Old 07-26-2009, 09:41 AM   #7
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Re: switching from generic to brand

I'm afraid the vast majority of docs are not up on the latest thyroid ideas. Then when the makers of Synthroid came along and rewrote all the treatment guidelines to treat by lab numbers instead of patient symptoms and with only their medication... well, everything's gone downhill from there.

As far as endos go, the good ones are as rare as hen's teeth. Most of us have had very bad experiences with them. I would call or email ahead of your appt and ask these few simple questions:

Does s/he go by TSH only to diagnose and monitor treatment?
Does s/he draw Free T3 and Free T4 labs and agree that these levels need to be near or top of range?
Does s/he raise thyroid hormones until the patient feels relief of symptoms, instead of going by labs alone?
Does s/he prescibe natural thyroid hormones or just T4 meds?

If you can find an endo that will answer correctly even 3 of these four you will be fortunate indeed. I've found a family med doc who does them all to my likeing so I'm extremely lucky. You may need to spend a bit of time looking though. You can try to post here and other forums for a recommendation.

Last edited by javelina; 07-26-2009 at 09:43 AM.

 
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