I find it sometimes useful to know the underlying cause in order to better understand what's happening along the way. For example, if the cause is Hashimoto's, then you can better understand if you see significant changes in TSH levels over short periods, and if you see a continuing increase in required medication levels as the thyroid gland is gradually destroyed by antibodies.
In your case I expect that the reason you are still not feeling well is that your current doctor is paying too much attention to TSH and hasn't even tested you for the actual, biologically active thyroid hormones, free T3 and free T4. (Note that FT3 and FT4 are not the same as total T3 and total T4).
In my opinion the very best way to treat a thyroid patient is to test and adjust FT3 and FT4 with whatever medication is necessary to alleviate symptoms, without being constrained by resultant levels of TSH. Symptom relief should be all important. Frequently we hear from patients here that symptom relief required that FT3 was adjusted into the upper part of its range and FT4 was adjusted to at least the midpoint of its range.
What you need is a good thyroid doctor that will treat your symptoms, not your TSH. This doesn't have to be an endo. One way to find out in advance is to call the office of any doctor you are considering and say that you are looking for a good thyroid doctor and you would like to ask one of the nurses a couple of questions before making an appointment. Then ask her if the doctor is willing to treat a thyroid patient for symptoms, by testing and adjusting FT3 and FT4 as necessary to alleviate symptoms, without being constrained by resultant TSH levels. Then also ask if the doctor is willing to prescribe thyroid medication other than just T4 types. If the answer to either is no, then you might as well keep on looking.
Can you help me understand why it is important to know the cause of your hypothyroid? I just started meds in Sept., I am up to 112 mcg. of levothyroxine and I don't feel any better.
I am looking for a new endocrinologist since I've learned how much he hasn't explained-he also has not done any t3 testing.
I suspect that I am undermedicated but I don't know what I need????
My labs are:
The lab range for normal is TSH is 0.45-4.5 Normal T4 range is 0.82-1.77
TSH 2.11 T4 1.24
TPO was 2,315 with normal range being 0-34
I've been on levo for almost 2 years, along with a low dose of cytomel for over a year and now that my levels are at the right point for me, I can lose weight too. I do have watch what I eat very closely and get exercise, but I can do it.
I never had a problem with weight, except during those times when I apparently went hypo and didn't know it -- when my thyroid finally whacked completely, I gained almost 35 pounds in a matter of about 3 months.
It can happen. I agree with the others -- if you can post your labs along with reference ranges, it would be very helpful.
I had a TT back in 1994 for graves/hyper, I have been on Levothyroxine for the last 16yrs without any problems.
I think everyone reacts to medications differently. For me at least it worked. I currently started at 200mcg, but for the last 3-4yrs at 125mcg.
No, as with most all our problems, we hear most from those disgruntled with their treatment. I'm taking levo, as are many of our members, and it works just fine for some of us. I've fought my weight all my adult life. But, when I was hypo (for a couple of years before diagnosis), I really "blossomed". After starting levo, I spontaneously dropped 25 lbs. without doing anything differently and I've since lost about 10 more and have no trouble maintaining.
You will have to get your levels of FT3 and FT4 "right" for you before you will have much luck with weight loss. How long have you been on levo? Getting to the correct dose can take several months and several adjustments. Make sure your doctor is monitoring FT3 and FT4 and continues to increase meds if necessary to alleviate all symptoms.
Not necessarily. Before coming to that conclusion you need to look at several other things. First, what was diagnosed as the cause for your being hypo? Second, depending on the cause and your blood test results, it could well be that you are not being given enough medication. After all, 50 mcg is not very much medication.
If you would please post your blood test results and reference ranges from the lab report, then members can comment further about possible contributors to your symptoms. If you don't have the info, then I suggest that you always get a copy and keep it for reference. The doctor is required to provide a copy upon your request.