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Hypothyroidism and weight gain - need a sincere advice
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Hypothyroidism and weight gain - need a sincere advice

I had a problem of chronic constipation with below mentioned all symptoms as well, I tried almost all medicines for constipation upon doctor’s advice but all treatments failed, then I have tested TSH and it was 6.5 before 1 year, doctor prescribed 50 mcg thyroxin every morning.
And now I am taking 150 mcg Thyroxin medicines and TSH is now 0.668, which is in normal range, but my weight has increased a lot and still having headache all the day and fatigue and constipation to some serious extent. More importantly, the side effects of thyroxin started appearing i.e. swelling on my face, feet, ankles. Please advise me should I stop thyroxin or what to do? My doctor isn’t taking it serious

Symptoms:
• I have you been putting on weight the last 2 years very rapidly, and having a hard time getting pounds off and keeping them off
• Always feel sad and depressed at peak
• Sometimes feel cold when others are comfortable
• Feel more tired more easily than anyone else
• Feel throat tight when you swallow.
• Having greater intolerance, digestive problems, depression, anxiety, aches & pains, severe headache
• Constipation and gastro problems
• It takes awhile in the morning to get going
• I m now more irritable than I used to be, and have mood swings very quickly
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15 Comments Post a Comment
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219241_tn?1357815389
Hi, Let me start by saying, I have been where you are now.

You have to understand that TSH is not the difinitive answer in diagnosing thyroid disease. Be aware that TSH also takes up to 4 weeks to change when any thyroxine dose is given.

You aren't having symptoms of thyroxine, it is being hypothyroid that is giving the symptoms you are having. Thyroxine is the thyroid hormone which you are also taking.

You need to ask what your Free T3 is. THIS will let you know if it is low that you are hypothyroid. Free T4 should be asked for as well, this will let you know if the thyroid medication is actually being used in your body. It is important to ask for thyroid antibodies testing as well. Hashimoto's is very resistant to thryoid replacement at first. This can delay symptom recovery by many months even when you are at optimal thyroid blood test levels.

All the body functions slow down in hypothyroid, including the bowels. Taking a laxative type of medication for constipation makes the bowel lazy and not help eliminate (pardon the pun!) the problem. You need a product like Agiofibe which is a bulking agent. This works very well. You would need to double the recommended dose to start with for at least 2 weeks. Then go down to the daily dose every day untill you feel better with your thryoid symptoms. Also make sure you drink water during the day to help as well.

Cheers!
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Avatar_f_tn
I suffered from chronic constipation (ER -twice for it); my doctor finally put me on a daily dose of Myralex. That was about 3 yrs ago. I take it daily in the evening. I have not dealt with constitpation since.
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649848_tn?1357751184
I take magnesium and digestive enzymes, at bed time.
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Avatar_m_tn
Just wanted to add this to the good responses you have already received.  You need a good thyroid doctor.  By that I mean a doctor that will treat you clinically by testing and adjusting levels of the biologically active thyroid hormones, Free T3 and Free T4, as necessary to relieve symptoms, without being constrained by resultant TSH levels.  Symptom relief should be all important, not just test results.

If you want to know more about clinical treatment, this is a link to a letter written by a good thyroid doctor for patients that he is consulting with from a distance.  The letter is sent to the Primary Doctor, to help guide treatment.

http://hormonerestoration.com/files/ThyroidPMD.pdf

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Avatar_f_tn

now I am taking 150 mcg Thyroxin medicine and TSH level is now 0.668, which is in normal range, but my weight has increased a lot and despite of efforts it is constant and having headache, fatigue, depression, constipation to some serious extent. swelling on my face, feet, ankles and having pain in joints

doctor isnt considering it anything wrong, and recommended me an anti depression DULON, but i discontinued my medicine now, started morning walk and controlling my diet and depression, I have planned to get lab test of my TSH, FT4 and FT3.

is this ok?
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Avatar_f_tn
I think once someone has this problem (hormone/thyroid disorder) he/she has to suffer with these symptoms for life time... weight gain, swelled face and ankles, depression, headache and laziness... please correct me if i am wrong

I am loosing hopes now

someone please help
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Avatar_m_tn
Please do get your FT3, FT4 and TSH checked on a regular basis.  FT3 is the mos important because it largely regulates metabolism and many other body functions.  Scientific studies have also shown that FT3 correlated best with hypo symptoms, while FT4 and TSH did not correlate very well at all.  

Many times patients taking large doses of a T4 type medication will end up with a FT3 level that is in the low end of its range, or below.  This is due to inadequate conversion of T4 to T3.  I had that problem for over 25 years because my doctor did not understand about the importance of FT3 testing.  As a result I continued to have lingering hypo symptoms, even though my FT4 ws very high in the range and TSH was suppressed below the range.  After learning about the importance of FT3 and having mine tested, I found it to be very low in the range.  My doctor changed my meds and added some T3. My FT3 level is now in the upper part of the range and FT4 around midpoint and I feel best ever.  

Since hypo patients frequently have deficiencies in other areas, I suggest that you also need to be tested for Vitamin A, D, B12, iron/ferritin, zinc, and selenium.  Getting these levels corrected will also have a big benefit to how you feel.  

So, there is no reason for you to be so pessimistic.  You just need to either get your current doctor to understand the importance of treating a hypo patient clinically, as described in the link I gave you and doing the necessary testing and adjusting of your meds as necessary to relieve symptoms.  If you haven't spent the time to read and really understand the link I previously gave you , I highly recommend that you do.  This will give you the information needed to push your doctor toward the type of treatment you need.  If the doctor remains adamant and will not treat you clinically then you will need to find a good thyroid doctor that will do so.

Do not give up hope.  Believe me you can feel much better.  If you will get the testing done and post results and reference ranges shown on the lab report, there are lots of experienced and knowledgeable members who will be very glad to help interpret and advise further.  
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649848_tn?1357751184
No, you don't have to resign yourself to suffering with these symptoms for life.... gimel is right, that you need to get your doctor to treat you clinically, adjusting your FT3 and FT4 levels in such a way as to relieve your symptoms.  Since you continue to suffer these symptoms, you either need an adjustment in your medication, or may have vitamin deficiencies such as those gimel mentioned.  

Along with the vitamins/minerals that gimel mentioned, you might also want to look at calcium and magnesium levels.  Magnesium can help immensely with muscle/joint aches/pains, it's calming, so may help you sleep AND you get the added bonus of it helping to keep the digestion going smoothly.

Do you have recent lab results (besides TSH) that you could post for us, along with reference ranges, which vary from lab to lab and must come from your own report?? Seeing your labs would help members to be able to evaluate your situation and comment more fully.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you so much Gimel and Barb for your help and support. First thing I have done is I have convinced myself to stop taking depression and tension without using any anti-depression medicine (thats the only thing my dr. endocrinologist prescribed me with thyroxin).. I am feeling better now, specially my headache is far better now (I used to have severe headache since last 15 years as I am over sensitive in nature, take tension for even minor things). I was suffering from depression at its peak since last 2.5 years, which almost destroyed my digestive system, made me a chronic constipation patient and hypo... i guess i became hypo due to same depression and sad feelings.... As I said, now my feelings and headache is better but not my constipation and swelling, I dont feel myself healthy
I have read the article that you pasted above, its really useful for me, but my Dr. is just ignoring all the things and symptoms I have, I will test my FT4 and FT3 and vitamins test as well and will share the result with you guys
Please advice me should I stop taking thyroxin for time being (as its side effects appearing) or should I lower the dose from 150 mcg to some lower degree?
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Avatar_f_tn
Mild and sudden weight gain is also a problem for me... Despite of doing daily walk and controlling my diet, I am unable to reduce my weight. I am 163 pounds now. Is this due to the same hypo problem? can I reduce my weight now?
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649848_tn?1357751184
I'm not sure why you think you should stop taking your thyroxin.  Your depression and sad feelings didn't cause you to be hypo, it's quite likely the other way around.

You are still having hypo symptoms, which could mean that you need an increase in medication, not a decrease.  

You will need to get the FT3 and FT4 tests done in order to tell exactly where your levels are, then it can be decided whether you need an increase or decrease.
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Avatar_f_tn
Let me share the tests result with you guys for better understanding

TSH is 0.668 (Normal range is 0.2 to 4.2) ----- Normal
FT4 is 1.32 (normal range 0.65 to 2.3 ng/dl) ----- Normal
FT3 is 3.26 (normal range is 2.0 to 4.4) ------- Normal
Serum Calcium is 8.0 (normal is 8.6 to 11 mg/dl)
Serum Magnesium is 2.9 (normal is 1.3 to 2.5 mg/dl)

Please advice should I contiue throxine or any other medicine now?

I have stopped taking medicine since last 3 days, and controlled my mental stress and depression, my headache, constipation n face swelling is somewhat better now... I guess the main culprit behind all these disorders was my extra depression..

I am still too worried about my unintentional and sudden weight GAIN.. Please advice; I want to loose 15 KG weight now

I am doing daily walk and controlling my diet as well
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649848_tn?1357751184
I still don't understand why you think you should stop the thyroxin. The thyroxin is not causing your constipation and/or swelling. In addition, most anti-depressants should not be stopped "cold turkey"; you should "wean" off them slowly.

Just because your labs are "normal" doesn't mean you should stop taking your medication.  The medication is what KEEPS your labs normal.  You labs actually look quite good, though, if you still have symptoms, you might need a slight adjustment. Medications should be stopped only with your doctor's permission.  

Have you tried taking probiotics or enzymes to help with the constipation?  Do you make sure you eat foods with plenty of fiber (including lots of veggies, whole grains, etc), and drink lots of water? Eating a healthy diet, will also help you lose weight.
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Avatar_f_tn
I was taking 150 mcg thyroxin, how much should I take now? yes constipation is not because of medicine, but my face swelling was a side effect I guess..

Yes, I am taking healthy diet, including fruits and vegetable. I am doing daily morning walk as well. drinking lot of water too.. but i want to loose my weight as soon as possible
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649848_tn?1357751184
If you WERE taking 150 mcg thyroxin, why can't you continue to take that amount?  I can't tell you how much medication to take; your doctor has to determine that, based on your current labs and symptoms.  Facial swelling/puffy eyes is often a symptom of being hypo.

Not sure what to tell you about the weight -- some of us just have a hard time getting it to budge.  I sometimes have to resort to a laxative to "get things moving", if I don't remember to take my magnesium and enzymes.  

If your doctor won't listen to you and take your symptoms seriously, you may have to find another.  All of your symptoms indicate hypo.

Your calcium level is too low.  Have you been tested for hypoparathyroidism?  Are you taking calcium supplements to prevent bone loss?  Have you had a bone density test to see if you may have osteoporosis?  Have you had your vitamin D levels tested?
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