Thyroid Disorders Community
Those of us on Armour- #2
About This Community:

This patient support community is for discussions relating to thyroid issues, goiter, Graves disease, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Human Growth Hormone (HGH), hyperthyroid, hypothyroid, metabolism, parathyroid, pituitary gland, thyroiditis, and thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH).

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Those of us on Armour- #2

Here is #2 thread that goes along with our first one which was taking too long to load due to it being so long!!
For anyone new, there is a lot of posts to read in the first thread and then please post on this one. Lets keep it going full of great information and support!!

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127 Comments Post a Comment
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577348_tn?1221751491
I have been on armour for 2 months; 30mg.
no side effects, my mood is improved; finally
starting to lose weight; with great effort, however,
make sure all of you avoid soy products...it
is in everything; you have to watch it;
  happy w/ the armour; I am not feeling
like a teenager; however, My mood, and
I need less sleep which is great;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;
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Avatar_f_tn
Good morning!

I found this 2nd thread.  Just had my blood tests taken on Friday and I am anxiously awaiting the results this week.  The aches and pains have come back with a vengence over the past two weeks and I'm sure I need to have a medication increase.  I will post my test results when I get them in order to get feedback.   I've been on Armour for 10 weeks now and started with a TSH of 28.  We'll see how it looks now.

In the process of packing up the house over the next few weeks for a move.  Not as easy to do with thyroid issues--but I'll get through it!

Laura--I hope you feel better soon!!
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499534_tn?1328707778
Hi gals!  I had a good 4 days running...yeah! Still heavy fog though....hmmmm

Sushi- yes you are right about the soy...i react easily to it and feel my thyroid burning right away. So glad you feel good. What are you levels at??? I just got my results back and the dr only increased me on the weekends, which doesn't make sense for armour.
She wants me on my 75mgs during the week and 90mgs on weekends.

Bretbunch- cant wait to hear what your levels are too, as you are 1 week behind me. Yes my aches and pains came back to....especially my wrists and low back and hip area. Please pace yourself and take your vitamins!!

My blood tests from last week:  TSH  0.24  (.30-3.0), Free T4 1.3 (.8-1.8),
Free T3  381 (230-420) ,  reverse T3  26  (11-32)

I still have the brain fog though...sniffle.....sniffle!
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393685_tn?1325870933
Hi all

This thread is much easier for me to load.  :)

180 posts on the other was impossible to get up and running for me :(

I am still euthyroid at 0.04 TSH - Had a bad day here and there but doesn't everyone?

Bret - Let us know the results. I bet either you are in need of an increase and/or magnesium may help you out on that one.
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499534_tn?1328707778
Nice to see you Stella!! Sounds like last weekend and cleaning through the week is still catching up to you. Also it is our pms week as we talked about. Take it easy tomorrow! :) :)
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458072_tn?1291418786
Hi,

I read somewhere that if people are having trouble getting their Armour from the pharmacy, get the pharmacy to call Forest Labs and they will drop ship a package.

I am still feeling crappy, but I think mine is due to very sick adrenal glands. Still trying to baby those things so I can get some sleep.
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410801_tn?1220123045
i switched from Synthroid to Armour 5 days ago. i started on one grain, and definitely felt the difference, more energy, not depressed anymore. but i do have light headache(all day long), everyday, for an hour or so, i felt shaky, then it would resolve itself. my heat beat is around 90/min.  i read it somewhere that you guys think the headache is normal, when will it disappear? or perhaps one grain might be too much for me? i was on 100mcg Synthroid before i switched.
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499534_tn?1328707778
Hi Helen....1 grain armour is 60mgs...which is a usual starting dose. It equals to between 75mcgs to 100mcgs. of synthroid. You will probably end up on a higher dosage. Sometimes people do end up starting out on a lower dosage if it is too much.
Usually the headaches will last about a week along with the racey feeling. If it doesn't go away and gets worse, then you may have to cut back.
I was on 75mcg synthroid when switched to 60mgs armour (1grain)...I am now on 75mgs weekly and 90mgs weekends. Each person is absolutely diff....keep us informed as the days go by so we can help you. I am sure Stella will check in soon to.
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Avatar_f_tn


I started two weeks ago, originally with 60 mgs and I had to cut back to 45 mgs and then increase to 60 mgs after a week (taking twice a day, 30 mgs in the morning and 30 mgs before 2 PM). I did this because of the effects you are talking about.

Yes, the headache and palpitations will go away.
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458072_tn?1291418786
It will also help cut down on the symptoms if you can split the dosages throughout the day.

    I just wonder if these symptoms ever go away, or is this something armour pts have to deal with all the time.

    Anyone been on it a while and can give us some hope that this will eventually and completely subside, OR do we need to just expect it from now on out?

Thanks......Peggy
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499534_tn?1328707778
My headaches went away after a few days......I never had any racey feelings at all.
I swallow mine though. When I tried to do it sublingually my body went into complete hyper mode and I felt aweful. Felt like I was speeding as well.
Helen- Yes you need to split dosages. I take mine twice a day. I bought a pill splitter and no problem.
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458072_tn?1291418786
I just wonder if the different side effects ever go away, or is this something armour pts have to deal with all the time.

    Anyone been on it a while and can give us some hope that this will eventually and completely subside, OR do we need to just expect it from now on out?
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410801_tn?1220123045
Hi Laura, and Peggy, thanks for your suggestions. I will split the pill today and see how that goes. will keep you guys posted. one question, for the second half, do i need to take it before meal as well?
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458072_tn?1291418786
It depends on how it affects you. It doesn't seem to bother me either way.

How is it going with the armour? I am having a bit of anxiety myself...I hate that....
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499534_tn?1328707778
I just take mine between 30-60 mins before i eat. Just to make sure.
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410801_tn?1220123045
overall, it's much better than Synthroid, i took an half this morning, my headache seems to be better, i still have a little shakiness. i guess i just need to pay attention and adjust. how long have you been on armour? do you have hashi?
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499534_tn?1328707778
Hi....just checking with you to see if you got your test results? Let me know how they turned out! :)  :)
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Hi everyone,  I am fumbling while learning to use this forum.  I meant to post this in this thread but made a unique question so here is my comment.    :o)

I'm new here.  
I had a Total Thyroidectomy this year and had rebound hypothyroidism.  I've been on Sythroid (generic then brand) for about 6 years then they yanked my thyroid because of suspicious cytology.  I just haven't felt well for years and worse for months after surgery.
  I've run the usual gambit of high cholesterol, bone loss, wt gain, fatigue, hair loss, skin sensitivity's, SSRI, etc, etc and seeing Drs. who follow the main stream TSH only treatment.  Finally found Armour advocates to talk to who convinced me to go with Armour.
I'll be starting it in a couple days and am wondering if anyone has any tips to offer that will help smooth my transition.  Currently I take 150mcg levothyroxin (levothyroxine).  I know the equiv dose of Armour is 90mg.  
I'm really happy to have found this forum and look forward to making new friends with my same issues that we can talk about.
Vina
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499534_tn?1328707778
Hi...welcome!!  Okay here is some good reading for the day....at the top rt hand area of the page you will see where it says discussions, health pages, trackers and members. Click on health pages and click on armour information page. It is filled with info and at the bottom will give you the link to get the actual prescribing information sheet. It explains dosaging and testing times which is diff than synthetics. Increases are every 2-3 weeks and testing is every 4 weeks. 90mgs will probably just be a starting dosage for you. Usually they start on 60mgs and work up from there. If you get jittery or hyper then ask to cut back to 60 and start from there. The conversion charts are a little off but a great place to start. You will probably need more than 90 but time will tell.
Next, we have a thread for "those of us on armour" named that. the original one is filled with info and people. It got so long we started another with #2 after those of us on armour. There you will find all of us who can help you through this!
Hope this is good starting info for you!

I must have been answering your other thread while you found this one!! lol   I just pasted from the other one to here for you!!  :0 :)  :)
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Thanks for the cordial greeting Laura!  Nice to meet you... Appreciate the locations to find info.  Going surfing now...{giggle}
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Hi there!

I am waiting for my test results to be received in the mail.  I called the doctor's office yesterday and they told me that my TSH is sitting at .03, but I don't know what my Free T3 is yet.  That info is being mailed to me.  But--we are reducing my Armour by 15mg from 105mg back down to 90mg.  I started the slight reduction yesterday and I think that is probably a good call from the doctor's office.  I was a bit nervous (prior to learning what my TSH was) to increase the dose anyways.  

I am still trying to find my optimum dose, and I don't yet know what that is, BUT--apparently, Armour is working for me, its just a matter of tweaking it a bit.  I'll post my full test results and ranges when I get them in the mail.  I'm anxious to see what they are as well.  :)

The past 3 weeks now, I have been having more aches & pains and a slight breathing problem had surfaced.  My system is a bit weird as I can definitely have breathing problems when I'm too low, but I can also get them when I am too high.  I guess its my body's way of telling me that things need to be adjusted.  Looking forward to a few weeks down the road to see how my body is adjusting and feeling.  Let's hope this change is the change that I am looking for.  I think I am getting closer--but not there yet!  

How are you feeling??  

Note to Peggy:  I do not have heart palps or raciness and I have been on Armour for 11 weeks now.  I am a believer that those symptoms do go away when your body gets more used to the drug.    I know I have limited experience with it, but it seems to be working for me--with only a little bit of tweaking for now.  To be contined though......
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499534_tn?1328707778
Hi...great can't wait for you to get them either so we can compare...lol....almost like the buddy system...lol! (11 weeks and 3 days for me)
You know, I get breathing problems too....usually when i am hypo. When i went real hypo one time it woke me out of a sleep and i was gasping for air. Horrible feeling. Or I seem like i a labored with my breathing. It has been better lately except for my pms week i get breathing issues for a couple of days,like shortness of breath.
Have a nice weekend and let me know when you get results!  :)  :)  :)
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410801_tn?1220123045
i am splitting the pill for 2 days now. actually i take half in the morning. 1/4 in the early afternoon. the headache does seem to get better. i start to have anxiety though. maybe my body is still adjusting to it?
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499534_tn?1328707778
I think you are still adjusting to meds. It can take a couple of weeks. If the anxiety gets to bad maybe you will need to cut back just a little. I would give it a little more time though. Hang in there... :) :)
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Avatar_n_tn
Starting Armour question-   Should I take the dose split in two, three or four doses and at what times and what fraction of the dose at what times of the day?
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Avatar_f_tn
I start taking 45mg of Armour split in three, once in the morning, then around 11 AM and the last before 3PM. I increased to 60 after almost two weeks (three times a day 30mg, 15mg, 15mg) and after one more week I increased to 75mg (30mg, 15mg, 30mg).
I will eventually bring it up to 90mg after a week.
I take it sublingually and it's working fine for me. You'll possible getting headache, and maybe palpitations, every time you increase, but they will go away.
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359987_tn?1207677404
I have been on armour now for a couple of months, headaches for a while(few weeks) with an occasional headache still.  I'm on 105mgs.  I haven't really had any anxiety and I sleep great.  I do have a low around 4 or 5 in the afternoon, but after reading this I will start splitting it up throughout the day.  I feel great up until then.  I had a TT on Feb 26 this year.  so I guess it's going to take the full year like they told me to get it right.

Hope everyone starts to feel better soon.
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499534_tn?1328707778
I divide my armour into 2 dosages. First one when i wake up and second dosage around 3pm. I have never had any over stimulation symptoms of increases. The only time I had wicked reaction was when I tried to take mine sublingually. The T3 hits my system too quickly for me...I had shakes and tremors and felt like I was on a terrible speed wagon...LOL   So I swallow mine and wait 1 hr to eat.
I did have headache for about 1 week.

Trica- Hopefully you will feel better way before a year!!!
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519035_tn?1348279373
Hi everyone. Well had some of my questions answered lol. I have been experiencing some palps, but I guess thats common during the switch. I am taking my second dose around 3-4. When do you guys take your vitamins? It says to avoid calcium four hours???
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499534_tn?1328707778
I take my vitamins just before lunch, and then with dinner. If you take them every day at the same time then you will find your dosage of meds needed with consistency.
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Avatar_f_tn
I take my multy in the morning, when I take iron I take it in the afternoon and I take the calcium before bed.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello there!

I finally got my test results.  Here they are:

TSH, 3rd generation:  0.03      range:  (.40-4.50)  Supressed nicely
T4, Free:  1.2     Range:  (.8-1.8)
T3, Free:  331      Range:  (230-420)  higher end

Those test results were from when I was on 105mg per day of Armour.  Since then, my doc has adjusted my dosage slightly, down to 90mg, (only reduced by 15mg) and I have to say that I am less aware of my heart beat and I feel like I don't have to settle myself down in the evenings.  So far, I think I like this dose better, but as we all know, only time will tell.  I go back to the doc at the end of October for re-evaluation of symptoms and levels.

I have been on the decreased dosage for 6 days now and I have noticed some worsening of hand, wrist and arm pain.  I really watched it closely yesterday and it got a lot better after I took my vitamin in the afternoon/evening.  I am now thinking that Stella must be right about the magnesium, because my vitamin D and  calcium supplements are find.  I am going to try to add 300 mg of magnesium citrate to my daily vitamins.  My vitamins already have 100mg of magnesium in them.  I'm thinking that may be the answer, because other than the aches and pains, I am feeling pretty good so far.  Keep your fingers crossed!!!!!!  I will know for sure once I get to the 4-6 week mark.  My breathing seems to be normalizing as well too.  

Taking 60 mg in the morning and then 30 mg 4 hours later.  Does anyone take liquid supplements for calcium or magnesium or vitamin D that is working well?  Trying to weigh out what might work better instead of having to take so many pills every day.  Not a fan of taking pills.  Any thoughts would be great so I can weigh it out next time I need to get more vitamins.

Not bad for having a TSH of 28 about 12 weeks ago!!!!  Thank goodness for Armour and a good doctor!!!!

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410801_tn?1220123045
i am experiencing something really weird. both yesterday and today, after i got up, maybe less than 5 minutes, i noticed hives all over my legs, from my ankle to my knee and they are white color, not very itchy, just a little. i didn't see it on other parts of my body. i waited for any hour after i took half pill of armour, i took claritin, in the afternoon, the hives were pretty much gone.

what is this? a simple hive that happens to a lot of hashi? or am i allergic to armour? but if i am allergic to armour, shouldn't i have the hives all very my body and after i take armour?
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Helen.

I have experienced some hives as well, they are red in color and get a small white head.  I started to see them under my arms mostly and they started before I changed to Armour but when my body was really going through some big yo-yo changes, from being hyper (over-medicated) on Levoxyl TSH .37 to hypo TSH of 28 within 5 weeks, and then bounced back again within 12 weeks to where I am now.  

I wonder if it is just your body acknowledging the changes because it doesn't sound like an allergic reaction to me--but I'm only going by what I have experienced.  I still get a couple here and there and they have lessened a lot and will probably go away once I am stable for awhile.  I didn't try taking any Claritin or anitihistamine at all and they go away on me in a day or two.
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499534_tn?1328707778
bretbunch- Your labs look pretty good! Glad you are feeling better! Keep an eye on your symptoms because you could go hypo easily with your decrease. I would ask to titrate between the 2 dosages maybe the 90mgs 2 x per week and stay on higher dosage the rest of the week.  
helen- usually if you experience hives they tell you to take allergy meds to see if it clears it up. If it does then you MAY be having a reaction to the fillers. If you continue with hives then i would consider looking into other meds. Westhroid is the most hypo allergenic i have seen with least amount of fillers.
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Avatar_f_tn
Laura &Stella:

Hi again.  I just read your post that said that I should keep an eye on my symptoms because I could go hypo pretty easily.  How fast can that happen and how likely is it?  I have noticed some increasing pains in my hands, arms and wrists.  It seems like this 15mg change is such a small one.  I'm a little concerned about it because the last thing I want to do is go hypo yet again!!  Shouldn't these aches go away in a couple weeks or so?  

Could this increase in my aches & pains just be an adjustment to the medication change?  I just added 250 mg of magnesium today, which brings my magnesium to 350mg, just shy of 400.  

What does alternating between 90mg and 105mg do to the body?  Have you done that before?  Thanks.
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393685_tn?1325870933
After the optimal level is achieved - tweeking the Armour in certain days is helpful. I have now been optimal for 6 months on 120mgs. BUT I do find that lowering the dosage a few days a week lets me rest a bit more at night or during stress.

I see Laura's point of upping on the weekends. I think when your are optimal you have that flexibility with the meds.

Until you are at your right level though - i don't think bouncing is appropriate.

You must go small with Armour. The body is very delicate with the T3. If you do not give the body at least two weeks before any changes it will not repond correctly and will drain other hormones.

If you are experiencing joint pain and aches then your body should be signaling you are ready for a med increase. That's the way the body is telling the brain "OK I'm ready "

Stay on the mag 350mg - no more right now. let the body get that in too Get the B's in though - your can also do a small amount of sea salt to keep the adrenals working right as you increase your supps and med.

Introducing supplements and Vit's slowly is just as important as meds.

Don't overload - or you'll never figure out what is working and what is not.

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Avatar_f_tn
You are asking for a good calcium/magnesium liquid supplement.

I am taking Bluebonnet Calcium Magnesium Citrate liquid, has also vit D3. I take it before bed and so far I am happy with it. I got it at the Whole Foods.
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517152_tn?1212372131
This was only my first week on Armour and it's the best I've felt in ages!  Can it possibly work that quickly?
Unfortunately my sleeping is not good yet, and I long for the day I can get enough.  Many days I still feel like a zombie.
I do get the white headed rash under my arms like someone mentioned.  It comes and goes.
But over all, I am feeling much better than I did.  I'm so happy I dumped the endo I had and found a real doctor that listened to me.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you for the info everyone.  You guys are great!!  

Still having aches and pains.  I have been on the 15mg reduction for only 7 days now and I will have to give this slight decrease a full 2 weeks before I know if it is working.  That will also give me time to adjust to the increased magnesium as well.  After that time, I will look into adding (very gradually) some sea salt as a preventative measure for my adrenal glands and look into adding some additional vitamin B's.  I'm glad you indicated that the supplements need to be added slowly as well--which is what I have been doing.  

Thank you for the info regarding the liquid calcium/magnesium.  I will look for that at Whole Foods when I need to replenish my supply in the future.  

Moojy:  Thank you for validating the rash under the arms that I have gotten on occasion.  Nice to know that someone else has experienced the same thing!!  All in All-- I have to say that I am very happy with Armour Thyroid and I'm looking forward to finding my optimum dose with a little tweaking here and there.  
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499534_tn?1328707778
bump for authrjen
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393685_tn?1325870933
I think it is very important for us Armour patients to read this article

http://thyroid.about.com/b/2008/09/10/armour-thyroid-shortages-worsening-what-can-thyroid-patients-do.htm

be prepared - it's going to get worse out there
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Thanks for the info Stella.  I'm going to go and try to get my refill filled today.  :)
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499534_tn?1328707778
I talked to a small private compounding pharmacy here local. The pharmacist was so nice and I told her about wes-throid. She is going to see about getting that in stock because she is backordered on every dosage. I even email her the wes-throid company info.   Try suggesting that to your pharmacist.
If I have to change I might even stay on the wes-throid. It has less fillers and a lot less allergic reactions to fillers. Then I don't have to worry about getting it.
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Hi there.

FYI--I just went to my local King Soopers pharmacy and I was able to fill my 90 day prescription of 90mgs with no problem.  They couldn't give me the 30mg's because they were a little short on those.

You guys may want to try your local grocery store.  I haven't had any problems getting my prescription filled there but I have had problems with Walgreens.  King Soopers is also known as Kroger, Frys and City Market.  It depends what part of the country you're in.  

I agree with Laura--if I run out of Armour, I would probably try Wes-Throid too.  If you try it Laura--let me know how it goes and how you feel.  I should have enough Armour now to get me into mid February.
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499534_tn?1328707778
Sure thing!!  The pharmacy I talked to was a small mom and pop type. I normally get mine at Walgreens who told me they have me on an auto refill. So we will see what happens. If not I want a back up plan for wes-throid. I actually wanted to go on that from the beginning. So yes I will let you know for sure!!
How are you feeling this week? Still have all the aches and pains? I am hanging tight at 75mgs for a while. I actually went outside and mowed the lawn today....thought I would get some exercise doing it! Yeah!!
My fogginess has been better since I started using the anti-fungal nasal spray my dr prescribed for me. I have had chronic sinus problems for 2 yrs. This is the first doctor to consider it being fungal. All other drs laughed even though the Mayo clinic proved 98% of all chronic sinus problems are fungal. I am afraid to see straight and without fog because i have been in one for so long. I hope that this is it!!! Within 2 weeks i should see a great diff if the problem is fungal I hope. Strong stuff too.....
Anyway have a wonderful weekend!!  :)
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393685_tn?1325870933
I too just called Walgreen's today and ask to have mine filled early - Ironically they had 30mgs and one grain tablets!!

I have not been able to get those for months.

I quickly said to fill the 30mgs and tomorrow I will pick it up.

very odd this thing with Armour.

I too support Wes-Throid and I may be a bit of a lurker on Thyrolar too.

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499534_tn?1328707778
OOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooo Stella the lurker.......scary sounding!  LOL
Are you feeling even better today?
Heh my thyroid isn't burning or hurting anymore where I felt the cyst and the palps are completely gone today. And I pushed myself today. Another nodule dissolved!!  :)
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no magnets?
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499534_tn?1328707778
Oh yeah....okay....okay....i will go and put one on now!  :)
No magnets were used when nodule dissolved.
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Glad that you are able to get your Armour prescription filled too!!  What is Thyrolar???  I want to make sure that I am well informed of any possible medications out there....just in case.

Well, I am on day 11 of my slightly decreased dose and still feel a little bit of the aches and pains, but I think my body is adjusting pretty well so far.  The aches and pains are not as severe and I am not constantly aware of my heartbeat now...so I think this might be working for my body.  BUT as we all know, proof is in the pudding and only time will really tell.  I do not feel any hypo symptoms which is great and I even went out yesterday and window shopped for awhile.  My husband says that since I have been on Armour I have been getting my sense of humor back again.  I think my body must be liking the magnesium too!!  :)

Is everyone else feeling okay?  Sounds like you guys are doing good right now too!!!
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499534_tn?1328707778
Well I was trying to go 8 weeks before bloodwork but I think I went hypo again. I literally almost fell asleep trying to drive today and fought to stay awake while trying to pick up my daughter. I felt very weak, lethargic, exhausted, and my ribs have been aching. Last bloodwork was on 8/22 and i was optimum for first time. Geesh.....even my breathing is off and it wasn't improved with nebulizer so it has to be thyroid. Even muscle and joint pain coming back. My dr is going to freak when i ask to be tested early again. Spending the money on tests stinks too!  If I wait until thursday to have blood drawn it will have been 6 weeks since last draw. Maybe trying to go 8 was a mistake on her part (drs).
What ya think? It is also day before period starts so we will see how I feel by thursday. Sure seems hypo though.  "Yawn"    Hugs!  :)
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Avatar_n_tn
hi all,
I just had another conversation with my endo dr. She is 'ok' with supporting me in trying armour for a year or so.she's not very happy with it as she'shad patients who've experienced trouble regulating things, but i really want to try it as i feel crappy with levothyroxine.

During the last year the least hypo i've been is tsh 5.5, i'm taking 150mcg of levo and i feel like my heart is jumping out of my chest, my eyes, wrists, fingers, head ect... are sore...my mood is just pure insanity.  
(sorry just venting)

anyway..i'm based in the uk, the thyroid clinic is based at our local national health service hostpital and they won't prescribe armour. my GP is fairly cool but hasn't even heard of armour. I'm going to see my GP tommorow and wondered howi go about persauding him to get it for me (all my presciption costs are free.. one of the few joys of being hypo in the uk).If i can't get him to get it for me i'll have to pay for it and order it from the states?

any armour advocates in the uk?? paying = 'boo'  free='yeah!'  
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636088_tn?1222784004
Hi all, this is my first post. it will be two years in december since my TT, i'm on 90 mgs of armour and i take it around 8 pm every night, maybe i should take half in the morning when i wake up and half later, i'm not sure what i should do, the only thing i can't get rid of is the fog, i can't stop forgetting things and sometimes when i talk i'll blurt out a random word that usually sounds like that i'm trying to say but isn't. my TSH level is 1.05, i'm waiting on the office to call back with the other numbers.
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mzhoneythang- Yes you should be taking half in morning and half early afternoon. The active hormone of t3 in armour is short lived and you are missing the benefits while you sleep. :)  Yes it is important to see the results of your free t3 and free t4 with the tsh....when on armour the tsh really shouldn't be looked at. Sounds like you are still having hypo symptoms. Maybe the fog will lift once you start taking your meds in the morning and daytime. Just get a pill splitter and divide it up. Let me know when you get your other test results.
Ozzie- You are still very hypo with a tsh of 5.5,that is crazy that your endo has left you there. I would just ask your GP for a trial and see. Make sure you start out at smaller dosage at first....usually 60mgs. The T3 in armour hits quick and you want to give your body time to slowly adjust.
Sleepy- I hope you found this thread...  :)
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So tired. I just want an increase up to  a 1/4 to see if that works. I am waiting on the doctors office now. I will let you know
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hang in there cynnie....let me know what your labs....don't forget to write them down and have them send you your copy. :)
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After over a month on Armour I just got my latest blood results: TSH = 7.77, Free T4 = 0.7 and Free T3 = 226.
I am taking 60 mg twice a day, 30 mg in the morning and 30 mg in the afternoon.
I am still having hypo symptoms

Can anybody give me a suggestion?
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Wait - I think you are writing your post incorrect.

It says you are taking 60mgs ( 2x's a day)........ which would total 120 mgs

Then you say you are splitting it between morning and afternoon - but mathematically the 30mgs 2x's a day only gives you a total of 60mg

What is your "daily" allowable dosage on your RX?

I am thinking you are only on the 60mgs so I will go on that.

If you have been on the 60 mgs for over 4 weeks and still TSH ranging at a 7.77 with a low moderate Free T3 range then you are in a slump with your dosage and hypothyroidism.

Most benefit in the old traditional way of taking this medication -  but many doctor Rxing it are not sure how to get the very best results for their patients.

Here is the solid theory of how to take your Armour so you can begin to stabilize.

Let's use the 60mgs to start as  I think you are on.

Keep splitting the dosages the way you are. then get an increase which may be the nescessary thing for you to suggest to your doctor right now at this time.

I think you doctor may recommend upping you to 90mgs at this time. Split that 3 ways now!  AM - 11:00 and around 1 or two 2

You may want to ask him for a 120mg ( in 15mg dosages) RX instead of jus a  90mg -  the reason you may want to do that is because another increase will be needed prior to testing.

but only start the first increase with the 90mgs.

After getting used to the 90mgs for approx. two weeks then up the med another 15mgs. (this is now a total daily value of Armour of 105mgs)

then the following week up to the additional 15 mgs. which will put you at the 120 total value.

after you have reached the 120mgs for two more weeks steadily taking the total RX - daily dosage of 120 mgs schedule testing again.

Your TSH levels should indicate a much lower number and your Free T3 should be at or near the higher range of normal.

I believe where you are at you are in a staggnant hypo situation and along with your doctors help with these slow increases - (giving that you had been in a great hypo situation for over a month) your other hormones may have been overworking to keep you in motion.

Usually a required 30mgs is the normal dosage change with increases - BUT I feel you need to do tiny increases like the 15mgs so your adrenals won't be shocked and you don't dump on your thyroid medication and have to start the process all over.

Support those adrenals with these increases with possibly a sea salt and water 2x's a day.

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Yes, you are correct, I am taking a daily total a 60 mgs Armour.
Thank you for the advise. I will talk with my doctor.
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Since I am on the 90mg dose, should i take it when i wake up and then again around 3? should i start taking more like you suggested for anca?
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I take mine in the morning when i wake up and then again at 3, and I do very well.  I suggest at least twice a day.
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519035_tn?1348279373
Bumped a little, but still not enough.:) I might just need a full replacement:) But at least I got rid of the face puffiness.
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ok, today will be the second day that i'm taking it twice, so hopefully things will get better for me.
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Hello there!

I haven't been online for awhile.  Just been trying to relax a bit.  I am now on week 5 of my reduced dose of 90mg and I seem to be doing pretty good.  The aches and pains are minimal and only every now and then.  My breathing has improved a lot as well as my general disposition.  But, I still think there will need to be a little bit of tweaking due to my breathing.  My body tends to have breathing issues when I am too high--so we'll see.  I take 60mg in the am and then 30 mg 4 hours later, which seems to be working.  

It was a predtty rough adjustment the first 2 weeks of the decreased dose--but I got through it.  I had to stop taking the magnesium because my body didn't need it after all.  I was having some negative effects from it after only taking it for 4 days.    I guess everything is working like its supposed to, with my daily multi-vitamin and my nightly calcium & vitamin D.  I go to the endo again on Oct 27, so we'll see what my levels are at that time.  I'll let you guys know when I know.  

I hope everyone is doing well and feeling good--or relatively good!!!  

Lori
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Hi Lori!!
So good to hear from you and that you are doing well! I am stable at 75mgs right now but could increase just a tad, but trying to just stay put...lol  Most of thyroid symptoms are gone....if I start getting run down or sick they do act up though.
Anyway....so glad to hear good things from you! Take care and check in again soon!
Laura
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Bumping for newbies....LOL   That's what they call the new guys on CSI....lol
I myself am feeling hypo after bout with bronchitis and asthma attack and steriod pack. So, I am going to increase by 1/4 and see how I feel. I am also upping my adrenal support. Major symptoms are joint pain bad in wrists and knees and shoulders, dizziness, fatigue. Probably due to withdrawal of steriods as well.
Any updates from others????
Keep the faith!!!
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I have been on armour for about 4 months now and havent been feeling so well still. I suspected adrenal dyfunction but was never tested. So i just started taking this new supllemt yestersay at dinner. This morning after I took my armour dose i felt great for about 3 hours. Then it all crashed. I posted my supplement info on the main page for users to view and review?Thnaks for the help
                
                                                    
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Did you see my answer to your post on your thread? I hope so...lol  I explained some important info and where to find it. You need to split your daily dosage into at least 2 dosages....morning and afternoon. Then you won't have that crash. T3 is short lived and needs to be spread throughout your day. Welcome to our thread....glad you found it! :)
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If you are only suspecting adrenal disfunction with no real knowledge or test backing you - you could be distrubing the whole Armour therapy.

HAve you been taking your basal temp?

You need some sort of testing on your cortisol levels. ACTH - cortisol serum or saliva is needed prior to adding an adrenal supplement.

As I said you can not assume you need hormone support until you know for sure this is your problem and the multi supplements that are available could be counter acting the Armour to not improve your thyroid situation.
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Kyle, I assumed you were told by a naturopath or chiro that your adrenals are weak, as Nutriwest products can only be sold by practitioners. Has Nutriwest gone to selling to the public now?? But as Stella said.... do not take unless you know your body needs it. Adrenal glandulars, etc can cause anxiety if it overstimulates you. You do not want to mess up your adrenals, it will affect your thyroid treatment.
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Hey thanks Stella and Laura for the responces. I actually have been placed on my adrenal supplement by my Chiropractor who susprcted lack of adrenal support. Who just happends to be my father.lol.I do feel a little better taking it. Im just taking one pill a day until i see the endo on wendsday of next week, for the firt time. Boy is he gonna have fun with me.lol.As far as I know Nutri Wet supplements are very expensive and can not e purchased by the public.I dont see why though. Their just vitamins.Anysways thanks for all the great help so far and I will definetly let you people know how my appoinment goes on wendday with the endo. Im hoping for the best.
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To feel your best on Armour, make sure you are having it adjusted by free t4 and free t3. While the TSH worked with dosing of Synthroid and other T4 medications, it does not work well in dosing Armour.
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Bump for DEMP....I hope this helps for you to read some of our info. :)
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Hello everyone,
I started taking Thyroid Extract (it's the equivalent to Armour) last week and I haven't felt any different yet :-(
I have to increase it weekly until I get to the right dose. Hope to feel better in a couple of weeks. I'm getting very concerned about my Hypo brain... forgetting everything..even words!  I had very high hopes for the natural thyroid meds.. i have to say I'm a bit disappointed that I'm not feeling better..
Doctor also gave me Hydrocortisone but i'm having bad side effects to it so I don't want to take it.
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Thyroid extract is not equal to Armour.

Thyroid extract is an off brand of dessicated thyroid medication and is not consistant in dosages.

HAve you had the blood tests indentifying you a hypothyroid patient? You will need an appropriate script to get equal dosages for your body to produce thyroid hormones properly.

This could be a major reasone why you have not gotten better yet.  What is the script for HC for? adrenals?
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Wow Laura! Thanks for this! This is great.  I'm not sure why my doctor never spoke to me about armour.  I am going to call him and my nurse tomorrow and let them know that I would like to switch make an appointment and switch during thanksgiving break.

Are there any suggestions as to how I should talk to my dr. about this?  They never ever spoke about an alternative so I'm wondering if theres a reason why.

thanks!!!!!  Hope you are all doing well on Armour I'm really happy to read that lots of you are feeling so much better and I hope that soon I'll get the same results :D
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Hi Stella,

I had my thyroid removed 2 years ago. I live in Australia so we don't have Armour. I was lucky enough to find a doctor that prescribes this Thyroid Extract. What do you mean it's not consistant in dosages?

Yes, she gave me the HC for adrenals but I don't want to take it. I'm trying to find if there are natural supplements for adrenals.

I also have very low ferritin but OK iron levels.
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Hey Everyone,

I'm going to my doctor tomorrow to try to switch to armour.  Hopefully he'll let me switch of synthroid since I've been on it for 9 years I know he's been hesitant about it since I brought it up but my appointment is coming up and he promised we could discuss it but that he hasn't perscribed it in years.

If anyone else has just switched hit me up :)  

demp
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Thyroid Extract is the brand name in Canada for the script similiar to Armour. I was looking at it as an OTC by error.

DEMP-

Switching to Armour is a difficult challenge - but most find it worth the battle. Your doctor may come up with rumors of inconsistancy and bi product caution - but rest assured - many are on this med and do very well on it.

Getting on it is the battle the "war" is making sure you are administering it in the way it is intended and follow appropriate lab testing which many docs are not in tune with anymore.

Some doctors will script it and then not really understand exactly how to monitor it.

Most Armour patients now a days are there own advocants and learn about the meds and how to take it. It is a challenge as I have faced - but well worth ever outcome I had.

I know am in a team approach with my doctor to keep me at optimal levels and I feel since my switch I now am back in control of feeling really good!

You may want to Google Armour benefits prior to your appt - and read about it if you are considering the switch. This will give you a boat load of information to approach with your doctor.
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My appointment went great! I found out he was hesitant about it because he said he had'nt switched anyone back to armour since synthroid came out.  He also told me that he was like the last doctor to turn patients to armour in our county.  So he was really easy and trusted my judgement and told me that he tried to fight the switch about 20 years ago.

I'm really happy and I hope that I'll have great results too, I start tomorrow :) after reading everyone's post I was ready with a pill cutter lol I've cut them all in half.

I was on 100 mcg synthroid so I had already gone to the armour website and got on the converter and it said that I should be on 60 mg or 1 grain armour, my doctor went ahead and perscribed it for me and since I"m going on vacation right after finals for a whole month he's letting me stick to it unless I feel strange and then get tested when I get back :)

Usually we test for t3, t4, tsh, and my calcium levels.  Please let me know if theres other tests I should bring up when i go get checked up :)

I totally understand the team approach thats how this doctor has been with me since I came to him when I was 16 and our five years have been all understanding care he's not the authoratative type of dr. :)

Anyway I'll keep posting my progress and if anyone is switching around this time too let me know we can compare :)  

THANKS!
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OK - you made the switch - Great!!

You should consider getting that pill cutting out and cut those 60mgs in half. Take a 30mg in the early morning and the other around 11am.

The direct t3 going in is very troublesome to most people until the body accepts the switch. This will "even keel" you out until things start healing.

Remember all thyroid meds take time to adjust - you will ned to be patient on this as you were with Synthroid.

If you feel jittery - cut the tablets in 1/4 instead of 1/2 and take it 4 times a day.

If you get a mild headache - that's normal - last about 2 to 3 weeks.

If you need any information - I can give you what I know and Laura1967 can assist you too.  There are a few Armour people here - so if you post a question - many will respond that have additional information too.

Good Luck

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Upped my dose today - 120mgs of NTE (I'm an Aussie). Feeling slightly better (compared to being on thyroxine), though my new GP yesterday queried & suspects longstanding zinc/copper imbalances, estrogen dominance & gluten/dairy intolerances - stating these can impair any thyroid medication (synthetic or natural).

I'm having a HEAP of fasting bloodtests done tomorrow (DHEAs, RT3, insulin, iron studies, Vit B12, Vit D, plasma zinc, serum ceruloplasmin, serum copper, transglutamase IgA, IgA, anti gliaden IgG and A, homocysteine, TFT, 24hr urinary cortisol), will be eagerly awaiting the results & let you guys know asap!
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I think its too soon to judge but so far today I've had no side effects at all its great haha and I didn't need my 3 pm nap!  Thanks :) they are all cut in half and put in my little daily pouches that I carry around with me :) I just need to make sure to get consistent on the afternoon one.  Today I didn't take it until 6 :D Anyway so far I'm happy about this
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bumped for glorbry....let us know if you have any questions on this thread that you asked to see. :) :)
welcome!!
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I wish I had found this forum sooner! I can't believe I didn't for all the years I have searched for help. I have been on Synthroid for years and absolutely miserable. I had total thyroid removed in 1994 due to papillary cancer. I have read a lot of the postings so I have gotten some good information, but could use a little more help. I have been begging doctors/ Endos for help for years to no avail. They just wanted to put me in the mental health category.  I basically became a vegetable as the years went by. Found out in 07 after changing Endos that my parathyroids were knocked out during surgery! I cried for days as I was mad that it took 13 years for that to be discovered even though low calcium all those years!! With initial addition of Calcitriol, my energy surged, but I quickly fell again, Up to that point I was on 150mg alternated with 175mg of synthroid. Slowly started bring synthroid down, felt miserable, begged them to stop lowering me, suicidally depressed with every adjustment, but no one believed me that it was related to thyroid. They said depression, bi-polar, etc and wanted me to take more meds which I refused.
  Anyway, enough history, I found a doctor that was willing to let me first try cytomel, I felt amazing for short time, but then started having heart jumping not palpitations, really scared me. It happened even on the weakest dosage possible 1/4th of 5mcg..  So I sunk back into sluggish depressive state. I have asked and he is letting me try Armour. I was on 125 mg synthroid at time of change. He started me on 120 mg of Armour 2 weeks ago today. Luckily the pharmacy only had 60's, so after a few days of feeling poorly, I sought out and found this forum and stop the madness web site with great information about dosaging. After the first few days I did split dosage to twice daily instead of 120 at once. It did help a little with energy in afternoon, I still don't feel good after 2 weeks, I have pretty bad headaches and pretty constant, but it was good to read that it is a side effect that can be expected and should subside. Also really tired and anxious to get my brain and energy back. My questions is should I still have started at a lower dosage and worked up. Was starting at this dosage bad? I feel so tired and am trying to be patient. I am not suppose to go back to doctor for 2 months or so, and I am thinking I need to be checked in 4 weeks. I had labs done day before so I have something to compare to. Any advice would be great, this has been a long ugly road and I want off of it!!!
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I noticed the last time I posted a comment was in Sept.  I have now been on Armour for about 8 months.  I am at 120mg.  I take half in the morning and half in the afternoon.  I feel ok most of the time.  Still have down time around 2 or 3 in the afternoon.  Still have the aches and pains in the hands and wrists and sometimes feet.  

I went to the Endo. on March 13, to find out that my "NUMBERS" are finally normal, with exception of my T3 being slightly elevated(above the normal range).  I don't have the heart flutters or heyper feelings tho.  Do you think it's possible for it to have a reverse reaction when your T3 is too high?  

Also, I wanted to add some vitamins and I am not sure when to take them.  Since you shouldn't have any 4 hours of you thyroid replacement, should I take them at bedtime???

One more thing!   I'm a little nervous because my doctor as ordered a full body scan.  It has been a little over a year (Feb.26) since my TT and a year (Apr 4) since my RAI.  Is this routine?
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I am so glad you feel better and actually I am really struggling on Armour since starting in late January. Of course, I have been struggling for the last 10 years!! I had to lower from the 120mg, due to heart palpitations and now really feel hypo again! Yuk

Anyway, I had papillary cancer and TT back in 94. I had a scan 1 year after my first one  which I was told was routine. I had several scans after that which used thyrogen(sp)? (where they no longer had to take my thyroid meds from to get tsh up). My memory is so bad, but it might have gone to scans every 2 years after that. I had one about 3 years ago and was told that I could go 5 years after that one.  Hope that calms you a bit!
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Where were your levels at exactly? TSH-Free T4-FreeT3?
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Hi, I have been on Armour for a little over 2 years. The best thing by far for me was that I lost all of the weight I had previously put on after my tt 5 years ago. That said, I still have all of the other symptoms of hypothyroid. It's so hard to get up in the morning, work all day, drive home and not fall asleep right away. I have absolutely no energy for the weekends. I with that Armour had been the miracle I wanted, but aside from the weight loss, I feel no different than I did on levothroid. Of course, I am afraid to change to anything else because I don't want to gain the weight back. It's the only thing that makes me feel good about myself. My whole family is thin, but I'm the only one without a thyroid. In fact, I'm the only one who has had thyroid issues, except for my 92 year old grandfather and he's on a very low dose of levothroid after being diagnosed maybe a year and a half ago as hypo. Anyway, I will be seeing my endo in a little over a week, and she is very easy to talk to and open minded. But over the last year, my levels have been all over the place. And that is a problem with Armour, because being a natural hormone, the tablets are not exactly the same each time. So, I'm glad to have found this thread, I look forward to being part of the support group. Thank you so much for being here!
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Terri

are you splitting you dose?
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499534_tn?1328707778
What were your most recent lab results for your thyroid labs? How long ago were they done? It sounds like you may be on too little medicine yet, which can happen a lot on armour. The drs don't always realized that being in the "normal" range does not mean normal. I will explain when I see your labs.
Usually optimum levels for a patient on armour is: TSH supressed to look like you are hyper, Free T4 mid normal range, Free T3 mid high normal to higher.
Sooooo usually people that don't feel good on Armour, are either not getting enough meds, or your body is resisting it.
Hope this helps and yes as Stella said, you should be dividing your dosage into at least 2 times.
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I am not splitting doses, actually I had not even heard about that until I joined this forum.
As for my levels, I am listing results starting from Feb 2008:

        2/21/08   4/8/08   8/11/08   8/27/08   10/22/08

tsh      1.00        1.51      0.08        0.01          0.02

free t4  0.70       0.69     0.78         0.90          0.94

t3         215          91      280           138          190

I am confused as to the difference between t3 and free t3. Any help is really
appreciated! Thank you so much for all of your experience and knowledge!
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Your Free T4 and Free T3 levels are way too low. You are undermedicated or your body is resisting the armour. If your dr goes by your tsh, then you will never get enough medicine in you to feel good.
First off is that you need a new set of bloodwork!! It has been wayyyyy to long. It has been 6 months since your last set of labs. You should be getting them every 3 mos when on thyroid meds, unless your thyroid was removed and you have been stable on thyroid meds for a long time, or you have been stable for yrs.
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Thank you, Laura! I will be seeing my endo soon and will (again) ask her to order the
labs. I now feel "armed" with this information. Just knowing this is possibly behind how
I feel, and not just something I need to accept - or not just how I am and never can
feel different! I am uplifted by your words!

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!!!
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Hi Laura,

I just got the results from my latest labs.

Free T4 is 0.71
T3 is 153
tsh is 0.02

Thyroglobulin AB is less than 0.1u/ml

and Thyrogloblin is less than 0.4ng/ml

I still don't understand this stuff. My throglobulin was at less than 0.1ng/ml last year. I'm not sure if I should be concerned. From what I understand, that is the primary test used now to determine if the cancer is coming back. But, I guess I can wait a few weeks.

I started taking my armour after eating this morning. I split the dose and took the other half this afternoon. I am looking forward to some better results, then I will talk to my endo about this at my appt. at the end of the month.

P.S. If my words get jumbled, it's not me! My computer has a mind of its own and sometimes I end up in the middle of a previous sentence, obliviously typing a word that does not belong. :)

Thanks again, Laura! By the way, if your name is any indication, we were born in the same year!

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Oops. Had the ab and thyroglobulin levels backward.
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499534_tn?1328707778
Hi Terry- Remember you should be taking your thyroid meds 1 hr Before you eat....empty stomach for absorption.
Yes you are definately still undermedicated with your free's being that low....wow you must be feeling yucky. You need to explain to your dr that with armour you need to be treated by your free's and your T4 should be at least mid normal range, and your T3 should be mid high normal range.
Good luck and let me know how you do.
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Hey there, just wanted to pipe in cause there seems to be real confusion going on - at least with me. There was another post about when to take Armour and it seemed to be that everyone said that you take Synthroid or T4;s a hour before eating, but with Armour you need to take with food as it needs something to bind with. I still feel so poorly and I had been taking an hour before until the last couple of days and now trying to take with some food. There just seems to be conflicting information on this, so anyone else input would be appreciated. Thanks
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Hello I am new to this site and just yesterday I convinced my doc to put me on Armour....so first day for me.  I was taking Synthroid and Cytomel, so at least I was used to taking some T3.  He has me starting on 30mg for 2 weeks than 60mg.  I could tell he didn't want to change me and emphasized in his notes it was the "patients request".  I have read to split the doses, so I took 1/2 of the 30mg this morning and will take the other around lunch...is this ok?  Any advise for a newbe to the group and newbe to Armour is greatly appreciated!  I only hope I can finally feel well!  Thanks for listening :)
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Hi, I'm another new visitor.  I was on Levoxyl for 7 months and it created high blood pressure, shaking, insomnia, light headed and dizzy and other negative side affects that are too numerous to mention. I finally begged my doctor to let me try Armour for which she was very reluctant but agreed.  Within two weeks my blood pressure went back to normal, I started sleeping again and I was actually able to go out and about on my own.  I was at 75mcg Levoxyl and now take 45mg of Armour but it doesn't seem like enough because I'm still very tired.  I do split the dose by taking 2/3 when I get up, and the last 1/3 around 2PM.  Two Questions:
Does anyone let Armour dissolve in their mouth as opposed to swallowing it? Also, has anyone experienced side affects from Armour with respect to a weird feeling or pressure in the eyes or tightness in the chest?
I appreciate feedback; glad to have found this link.
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Hi and welcome!

How long have you been on the Armour?  I am still new to taking Armour as well (only the first week) and I was on 75-100mg Synthroid....only taking 30mg Armour right now and I do wonder if I need more but trying to be patient.

I do take the Armour and let it dissolve under my toungue (sublingual)...it is suppose to get into your bloodstream quicker rather than having to swallow it.  I like this because it doesn't then matter when I take it...

I haven't had those side effects on the eyes, but I did seem to have a bit of tightness in my throat, not bad enough to scare me, just different.

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Started taking Armour on April 1 and my last blood tests showed my TSH was at 5.6 which is high for me.  I feel better around 1 or 1.5.  If I take 30mg of Armour at one time I notice that my chest feels real tight about an hour or so after that.  Then it starts to feel better and I take the second dose about 8 hours later and again my chest tightens up.  I've decided to try it different today and do 15mg at 6AM, 10AM and 2PM to see if that helps.  Think I will try it under my tongue to see if that doesn't get better benefit as I just read swallowing it causes stomach acids to make it less potent. Why did you switch from Synthroid?
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971640_tn?1247794439
Hi ,..

I am a new visitor and I had my thyroid removed on May11 '09,..I have been taking Levoxyl 150mcg for about 60 days ,..but still feeling very sleepy in the afternoons.I was tested on 07/08 and my endo called and told me my TSH was 4.5and that I needed my dose lowered to 137mcg (why?????????) ,..this doesn't make any sense to me ,...I asked him  about Armour and I got shot down ,I had a physical with my PCP this week and she gives her thyroid patients Armour ,..she wrote me a script for Armour 120mcg,..but I haven't filled it yet cause I'm sure if I've given the Levoxyl a fair chance to work .BUT ,.....I really feel like my endo doesn't know what he is talking about ,..(if I lower my dose ,..won't I become even sleepier ?) please help
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Avatar_m_tn
It doesn't make any sense if the TSH result was really 4.5.  Could it have been .45?  If so, this would be more consistent with the Endo wanting to lower your meds.  Of much more import than TSH would be free T3 and free T4.  Have you ever been tested for the "frees"?   These are the active thyroid hormones that create the biological activity in the body.   Free T3 is four times as potent as free T4 and it largely regulates metabolism and many other body functions.  Free T3 also correlates best with hypo symptoms.  TSH is a pituitary secretion that is affected by many variables and does not correlate well at all with hypo symptoms.  Why doctors continue to rely so heavily on TSH as a diagnostic is a mystery to us.  It would be far better for the doctor to treat your symptoms by testing and adjusting your FT3 and FT4, by medication as required to alleviate your symptoms.  It's really all about symptoms, after all.  I think you might benefit from reading the article in this link.  

http://www.hormonerestoration.com/Thyroid.html
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393685_tn?1325870933
I think you should fire the endo and go with your PCP. If you feel you have given your original med some time and still feel bad - you can try Armour and see if it benefits you.

The only thing and I stress as Gimel does. You need to rely more on the free T3 - Free T4 labs than using the TSH as a guideline.

I'd like to see you continue this post on your own thread. This is a very long post and many will not visit this as it takes a long time to load.

I don't want to vent to hard on your endo. If you say he looked at the TSH at a 4.5 and wanted to lower your meds... especially when you have NO thyroid.....

he should not be anybody's doctor then in my book.

Especially since he ignored your quest to "see" if Armour may help. Way too closed minded of a practioner regardless of his "endo" status.
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727481_tn?1231207371
Where do you get information on acceptable free T3 and free T4 levels?  My last TSH was 3.13 which my endo said was fine.  I tried to tell her that I wasn't feeling well still and she just brushed me off and told me to go to my primary care doctor.  I had RAI therapy over a year ago and wanted to ask her about parathyroid glands since I've heard they can be damaged with that procedure.  Some of the symptoms I have mirror those of parathyroid issues.  SHe just wants nothing to do with me, especially since I asked for Armour over Levoxyl.  I just can't be sick anymore; it's been over a year.
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971640_tn?1247794439
Thank you guys for responding . I love this forum !,.My endo sd my TSH was definitely 4.5 and he thought I was crazy by asking him about my free T4 and T3. I went ahead and filled my script for the Armour today ,..but I split the 120 mg in half ,..(because I read that I might get a slight headache ,..and I had one ALL DAY :(
I will not be going back to that endo (sticking with my family doctor ) and like you sd Stella ,..he shouldn't be anyone's endo !I hope my headache doesn't last too long ,..I also bought some selenium and L Tyrosine today (I saw that on this forum as well ),..I'm going to start a new thread
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1750923_tn?1311946601
I am on my third day of Armour. I really believe that I am starting to feel better already. My chest is not as tight,breathing calmer, and more energy. I am very hopeful!
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Avatar_f_tn
Got a physical bc my blood pressure was reading high. Main conclusion of blood work: TSH of 44 but without major symptoms.

Doc scripted T4 of 75 mcg. Have since been forewarned by this community to avoid unopposed T4 due to its adverse effects.
THANK YOU FOR THAT.

I am 50, and take a generous multi-vitamin, but no never-ending prescriptions. Really don't want to start when I feel fine, either. But doc says, do it. If I did, I would probably start on 60 of Armour, cut into fourths; start at a quarter dose for two weeks and work my way up every few weeks to the full dosage, depending on my body's reaction.

Any suggestions?

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649848_tn?1357751184
This is a very old (and long) thread and I haven't read it word for word, but I'm not sure where you get that unopposed T4 med has adverse effects.  There are many of us on T4 meds who do just  fine.

Those who have "adverse effects", are usually over medicated or have a reaction to the binders/fillers in the medication.

Were there any thyroid tests, other than TSH done?  You need to have the actual thyroid hormones, Free T3 and Free T4 tested, as well.  TSH is pituitary hormone and should never be used, alone, to diagnose/treat a thyroid issue.  

In addition, 75 mcg of T4 med may be too high a starting dose.  Many find it better to start at a much lower dose, and work up slowly, allowing the body to become accustomed to having the hormones it's been doing without.

If you have results for the Free T3 and Free T4, you would get better attention if you start your own thread, rather than posting on one as old as this, since most of those members are no longer on the forum.
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Avatar_f_tn
Got a physical bc my blood pressure was reading high. Main conclusion of blood work: TSH of 44 but without major symptoms.

Doc scripted T4 of 75 mcg. Have since been forewarned by this community to avoid unopposed T4 due to its adverse effects.
THANK YOU FOR THAT.

I am 50, and take a generous multi-vitamin, but no never-ending prescriptions. Really don't want to start when I feel fine, either. But doc says, do it. If I did, I would probably start on 60 of Armour, cut into fourths; start at a quarter dose for two weeks and work my way up every few weeks to the full dosage, depending on my body's reaction.

Any suggestions?

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Avatar_f_tn
oops, sorry for the double post: didn't see my post and your reply listed until now.

I got the idea that taking T4 unopposed--without accompanying T3--had more bad side effects from reading the posts of others who had taken it from this and other website threads.

No other tests were done besides the routine physical blood work. maybe that is because my insurance covers nothing else at this time.
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649848_tn?1357751184
You may want to think about getting tested for the Free T3 and Free T4, even if insurance doesn't cover it, because we see WAY too many people being treated, based only on TSH and they remain sick, in spite of so called "normal" TSH levels.  I'm one, who was kept very ill for over a year, because of a doctor who only treated by TSH.

No one should ever be given a medication with the T3 component, without being tested for both FT3 and FT4.  T3 med is much more quickly metabolized than T4 med and without proper dosing, you can go hyper very quickly.

There are websites, from which you can purpose a standard thyroid panel (TSH, FT3 and FT4) for approximately $85 (out of pocket).  You get the lab order, then set up with a local lab for the blood draw; within a day or two, you have your results.  One that I've used in the past is healthcheckusa.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks, I'll check into that. I would like to have an objective baseline of more than just TSH before starting "treatment."

Doc thought a TSH of 44 by itself was cause to start a script of 75 mcg levothyroxine.
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649848_tn?1357751184
While TSH of 44 is definitely cause for concern, you also need the other tests to be able to guide your treatment properly.  If you can get your doctor to do the FT3 and FT4, that's great, but if not, I'd go the other route.
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937780_tn?1253135662
Hi.  I just started my first dose of Armour this morning.  I had been on 175 Levoxyl for nearly a year.  In October I went for my routine Gyn visit, got the ol' thyroid blood test and BAM!  TSH 19.....crap.  Unfortunately, my Gyn didn't bother to call me with this information and I didn't find out until over 6 weeks later.  Thankfully, my endo was able to see me this week and he is wonderful!  He actually suggested Armour instead of upping my Lev dosage to over 215.  

He's started me on 150 and I'm taking it in the morning per his instructions, scheduled for bloodwork in 6 weeks.  No headache so far.   (I don't have the other results, T4, T3, etc right now but they were run.)

I guess it's sort of perverse to be thankful that my number was so high, but I've felt so rotten the past months.  It takes everything I've got to just get out of bed.  I don't do anything anymore...some days I don't even take a shower.  I had even talked to my Gyn about changing to a different anti-depressant, thinking anything would help.

Anyway, sorry to babble on but it's great to find others feeling the same as I do...but hopefully better.

Also, any suggestions on (brain fog....can't come up with the word...grrr) additional things (i.e. multi-vitamins) that I could be taking to help.  Thanks for any help (I need lots, LOL).
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798555_tn?1292791151
I would not add anything else at the moment. Give Armour a good try for a few months to actually see what hypo thyroid symptoms it helps relieve. Instead of relying on your body to convert T4 to the hormone all of your cells need, T3, you are now ingesting it directly.

Another note: When switching from a T4 med (levo) that stays in you body longer than a T3 med, its best to work your way up to the dosage. Many doctors do not thinks of this, thus patients quite commonly go temporarily hyper untill the old T4 wears off.

The T3 in Amour most likely will eliminate the brain fog, help mood, and help any body pain resulting from low thyroid levels.

This is an old thread, might want to start your own thread for your specific questions.
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Avatar_m_tn
Has anyone noticed more hair shed from taking armour?? I"ve been taking it just a week, 30 mg and have experienced more hair shed, which is stressing for me because hair loss is my major complaint of the hypo.
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Avatar_f_tn
These are my test results through Healthcheckusa.com:

Test Description                Result Range Units
TSH004264                32.94 0.450-4.500 uIU/mL
Triiodothyronine,Free,Serum010389  2.4 2.0-4.4 pg/mL
T4,Free(Direct)019745 0.79     0.82-1.77 ng/dL

Looks like I'm close to the healthy target range for FT3 and FT4, but still way over the range for TSH. What do you think?
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Avatar_f_tn
NORTH ALABAMA GIRL NEEDS A DOCTOR I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism about 5 years ago. I diagnosed myself. I started out with the hyper symptoms...waking me in my sleep. I was sweating, heart racing, feet & hands cold, pupils dilated, and waking every 30 mins all night. all docs said it was anxiety & all in my head. Eventually a year later everything stopped and i started having PVC's (which i still have occasionally today). Stress test is normal. I think it is my hypothroidism. I take Synthroid 75 mcg & Cytomel 2.5 mcg. I really want the PVC's to go away! My friend recently had a heart attack at 38. The heart doc believes her endo had her on TOO MUCH synthroid!!!?? Go figure. Help me find a doctor that knows what he is doing. So I do not have to live in fear of my heart failing me. I want my life back with my two boys & husband. They want me back too. :(
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Avatar_n_tn
also wondering if i have low adrenals (cortisol test 4/11 was 9.3); what is the salt water help? I have hashimotos and my last TSH test was march at 2.270 i am on armour 90 now and feeling better than when i was on synth 100 (tsh 0.393)  i am still very tired and cannot loose any weight and have severe migrane (migraine) headaches at my cycle time. any suggestions or help?
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Avatar_m_tn
This is a reply to a very old post but I have to ask how things have gone.  I have been on levo for about 6 yrs, first at 50 then at 75.  I never felt any difference in my fatigue, weakness, dry skin, weight, depression etc....Nothing happened except my labs (TSH, T4) came back better.

New PCP found nodules and Hashimoto's.  2 years trying to control bp.  I have been on up to 5 different bp meds at a time.  Hypertension specialist got me down to 2 pills, 3 meds because one is a combo pill.

I have RA so I know what joint pain is.  BONE pain has ended me in ER but joint pain never has.

I am just getting ready for my first trial of Armour.  Doc is "figuring out equivalent dose" and going to talk to my endo.  He expects some resistance but says we can try it anyway.

My question really has to do with the bp and bone pain connection to thyroid.  If you are hypo on labs can thyroid sporatically spike bp to "malignant hypertension" levels like 228/114?
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Avatar_m_tn
One grain of Armour (60 mg) is the equivalent of somewhere between 75 and 100 mcg of T4 med.  It all depends on what assumption is made for the relative biological activity of T3 to T4.  Some say it is a 4 to 1 ratio.   So with 9 mcg of T3 in one grain of Armour, multiplied by 4, plus the 39 mcg of T4 in one grain, that is equivalent to 75 mcg of T4.  If you assume it to be a higher ratio, then one grain of Armour can replace up to 100 mcg of T4.  Personally I prefer the one grain to 75 mcg of T4, because of my own experience with switching to Armour from Synthroid.  

From your many hypo symptoms, it seems that you have never been adequately medicated.  You really should request to be tested for Free T3 and free T4 (not the same as Total T3 and T4) each time you go in for testing.  Also would be a good idea to test for Vitamin A, D, B12, ferritin, and a full iron test panel.  

A good thyroid doctor will treat a hypo patient clinically by testing and adjusting 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.   With Hashimoto's, you can expect to have to continue to increase your meds to offset the loss of natural thyroid hormone.  Based on the experience of myself and many members I doubt that your Endo would agree with all this, but then what success have you had with your doctors so far????  

If you will get that testing done and post results and reference ranges shown on the lab report, members will be glad to help interpret and advise further.  
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi there,
I haven't been diagnosed but think there is something wrong with my thyroid results. I was wondering if anyone would be able to comment from their experience? I'm considering starting on Armour myself as am getting nowhere with doctors.

TSH (0.27 - 4.2)
May 2012  1.76, Oct 2011    1.2, July 2011    0.95
Is is normal to jump around like this in under a year?

Free T4 (12-22)
May 2012  12.7, Oct 2011    14.8, July 2011    15.3

Free T3 (3.9-6.0)
May 2012   4.99, July 2011  5.4

Thyroid Peroxidase IgG (finger ***** test) 12.3 (range 0-75)
Anti-Thyroglobulin <40 (normal)
Anti-Thyroperoxidase <35 (normal)
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Avatar_m_tn
Were you having symptoms that led you to get the thyroid tests done?  If so, what symptoms are you having?  Are you on any thyroid meds now?  If so, what type and dose?  

Your test results aren't really jumping around.  TSH has been increasing, but is still in a range that is not a strong indicator of thyroid issues.  Consistent with the increasing TSH, your Free T4 and free T3 have been declining.  This pattern I would normally associate with early stages of Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, which is the most common cause of diagnosed hypothyroidism.  The tests for Hashi's are TPO ab and TG ab.  I'm not quite sure of the numbers posted for those tests.  Is the <40 a test result?  If so, what is the range they recognize on the lab report?  Same question for the <35 result.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Gimel,
Thanks for responding. The Two antibody test ranges were simply listed as under 40 and under 35 which are the normal range. They didn't give me the actual numbers. Those results were from early 2011 as well which is before the T4 and stuff started to decline.

I've loads of hypo symptoms which has led me to investigate - fatigue, brain fog, cold hands and feet, hair loss, thinning eye brows, weight gain, slow heart rate, low blood pressure, always feeling cold, no sex drive, increasingly heavy periods and frequency as well as huge clots (all starting earlier this year).

As I said, I was considering looking into taking Armour - no, I'm not on any thyroid meds. I am taking Isocort for adrenal support but thats it.

Thanks for your input!
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Avatar_m_tn
Those symptoms are consistent with being hypothyroid.  However, before starting on thyroid meds, I think it would be a good idea to get some additional testing done, to determine your current levels before meds.

Specifically I would test again for Free T3 and Free T4.  Also, I would test for TPO ab and TG ab, to see if those results have increased to a  level that would be diagnosed as Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, which is the most common cause of diagnosed hypothyroidism.  Since hypo patients are frequently low in other areas, that can have similar symptoms, I would also test for Vitamin A, D, B12 and ferritin.  Since you are taking Isocort, you should get a 24 hour urine cortisol test to see what your levels are currently.  One further test I recommend is Reverse T3.  Some researchers report that the best measure of tissue thyroid levels is the ratio of Free T3 to Reverse T3.  

If you will please get those tests done and post results and their reference ranges, members will be glad to help interpret results and advise further.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Laura
I have been on synthroid for about 18 years. They found my under active thyroid when I had developed a virus. I have had diarrhea everyday for the past 18 years. I have had colonoscopies diagnosed with IBS.  I just recently started researching everything because of being treated for environmental allergies.  I have hay fever and have since I was a kid.  I read that people wit
h hay fever should not take synthroid due to the ingredient acacia. I also have a corn pollen allergy and have read that I should avoid all form as of corn. Synthroid has cornstarch. I went off my synthroid about as month ago. My belly ache that I would get an hour after taking it has sent away and the diarrhea is subsiding .  Have you read anything about the acacia? And now I need to find an alternative med. without cornstarch .felicia
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