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Old 02-15-2011, 06:26 AM   #1
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How long for thyroid meds to kick in

Hi All,

I am new member here but have been reading the posts for a long time, I was very recently diagnosed with hypothyroidism, it took a lot of testing to get the diagnosis as my thyroid was doing funny things.

I am male and did not have a lot of the more usual symptoms of low thyroid function but I have Two siblings, a brother and a sister who are hypothyroid since late adolesence.

My symptoms started Two years ago with chronic muscle pain in my neck and difficulty raising my arms above my head, carpel tunnel syndrome, tarsal tunnel syndrome, extreme fatigue and digestive problems. As I began to wonder what was going on my mind started racing and I ended up with some really bad anxiety and panic attacks.
I was really loosing it when my brother said 'thats exactly how I felt before I found out I was hypothyroid' I then went to see my Doc and told him all my symptoms and explained about what my brother had said. so he tested all he could for a thyroid problem.

the test came back normal - very normal.
Doc said I was presenting with thyroid symptoms and said he would monitor my levels over the course of 7-8 blood tests over 2 months.

I agreed, the second test came back slightly hyper (the only result I can remember was 277 he explained the top of the range was 220 and I was entering into a hyper phase) - it was One of the Total tests

The Third test came back with a TSH of 1
I was then sent for a ultrasound
ultrasound was normal, which my Doc said is expected in either a normal or hypo thyroid

next test came back with a tsh of 9 and my doc said 'you are hypo'
which was a great relief.

he said he wanted another test before prescribing anything, the next test came back - wait for it - normal

Doc says, there is still a problem but didn't want to risk sending me hyperthyroid

the next two blood tests saw my TSH go to 9 again and then the last One went over 20

I am now on a starting dose of 100mg of Eltroxin, this is week One and I have another blood test in Two weeks time.

When should I start feeling normal again? - I still have chronic muscle pain and digestive problems

Thanks everyone for a great board that was a great help to me over the last while

all the best
Rob.

 
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:59 AM   #2
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

So your doctor wouldn't treat you with a TSH of 9 'cause it'll make you hyperT - well yes it can do that if you start your medication with 100 mcgs I strongly suggest you start with 50, increase to 75 after a week or two and then a while later maybe up to 100. 100 mcgs is not really a starting dose (maybe if you had your thyroid removed then it would be ok) - usually medication is started with 25 or 50 mcgs and increased slowly from there if needed to avoid unwanted side effects (like hyperT symptoms) and to not go hyperT.

The medication should start to kick in in a matter of weeks, maybe a couple of months depending on the dose, the severity of your hypoT, how your body absorbs the med and how long you were hypoT before getting medication.

Last edited by FinnMaid; 02-15-2011 at 07:02 AM.

 
Old 02-15-2011, 07:55 AM   #3
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

Thanks FinnMaid,

I must admit my interpretation of the results are sketchy at best, I just know it was pretty bad, The Doctor did mention that I shouldn't be starting on 100 but justified it somehow, probably my digestive problems, my sister also said she started on 25- TBH I am feeling a little better and not hyper at all, still very sluggish despite large the large starting dose

all the best
Rob.

 
Old 02-15-2011, 08:20 AM   #4
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

It does take time any case - this med is not an "instant fix", the "real effects" take weeks, sometimes months. In the future always get a copy of your results and learn to interpret them - doctors often shouldn't be trusted blindly .

Last edited by FinnMaid; 02-15-2011 at 08:22 AM.

 
Old 02-15-2011, 08:45 AM   #5
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

Thanks FinnMaid,

He's a great Doc I have to say and managed to make a diagnosis, I didn't ask for the results because I might as well be looking into a bush, I'm back in a couple of weeks so I'll get a copy and post them here.

thanks again
Rob.

 
Old 02-15-2011, 09:20 AM   #6
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

FYI

It seems there are Two aproaches to initail doses

thanks
Rob.

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Old 02-15-2011, 02:52 PM   #7
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

Did your doctor check your freeT4 and freeT3 levels?

These are important, particularly since you feel so bad and family have had thyroid problems.

On the initial dosage, I get the impression that most start slowly but I read about a double blind test study giving some patients higher (full replacement) dosage immediately and other starting off slowly.

"The conclusion of the study. In patients with hypothyroidism, starting therapy with a full dose of T4 is safe, but not more effective in relieving symptoms than starting with a low dose."

So it seems you are fine with either.

Last edited by moderator2; 02-15-2011 at 08:00 PM. Reason: please do not post unapproved websites

 
Old 02-16-2011, 02:37 AM   #8
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

Thanks Alexandra, it seems that there is no clinical evidence for a smaller dose being more or less effective except in elderly or otherwise ill people, if, apart from hypoT, you are in good health then a bigger dose just means less adjustments- which I'm fine with.

I did get free and total tests done for T3 and T4 my T3 was fine but I'll get all the results and post them here for a second opinion

all the best
Rob.

Last edited by moderator2; 02-16-2011 at 05:45 AM.

 
Old 02-16-2011, 03:20 AM   #9
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

The point in starting slowly is that even otherwise healthy, young people sometimes do get HyperT symptoms when starting on a high dose - many can't tolerate that 50 in the beginning, some even need to start with 12.5 mcgs to avoid hyperT symptoms. If you're doing fine with this dose then good for you but practice has shown it's the safer approach to start more slowly. Many people don't even need to go as high as 100 mcgs and can do fine with say 50 or 75 - there's no way of knowing before giving it a try No study tells us for certain how our individual bodies will react.

Last edited by FinnMaid; 02-16-2011 at 03:46 AM.

 
Old 02-16-2011, 04:30 AM   #10
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

I had thyroid problem for awhile, '95 -'97. All I noticed at first was a sensitivity to cold, then bloodpressure would be unstable (all over the place), then I started to get pains at the elbow and into the forearm (deep to the bone). In '97 I was tested and told I had Hypothyroidism and given 50mcg of Levothyroxine. Within a mo. I felt better, no pains or sensitivity to cold...bloodpressure has been normal also.

I don't trust doc's either, alway's get a second opinion if you think something's not right.

Last edited by wwj56; 02-16-2011 at 04:31 AM. Reason: typo

 
Old 06-04-2011, 04:57 AM   #11
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Re: How long for thyroid meds to kick in

Thats so good to know,as i just started my new dosage today...i was on 100 and they uped it to 112..i hope it helps quickly,as i have been feeling so badly lately!
bren

 
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