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MZZCHIEF's Photo MZZCHIEF Posts: 10,408
5/16/16 11:02 A

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Kdavis
What do you mean when you say your "levels are low". What are we talking about here?

Do you have actual numbers from your tests? If so, we need to know them.

Why? Well if you say low, you could be referring to your TSH, or to you actual thyroid hormone numbers (t3, t4).

Advice for a low TSH, is not the same advice for low Ts ( T3, T4).

So fire away, girl!
O, and if you don't understand my explanation about generics below, please say so, and I'll give it another shot.

It's important to understand, bc people don't just recover from this thyroid thing, it's a lifelong dance, sadly enough. But understanding the nature of this beast will go a long way towards giving you peace of mind, which is my purpose here on this team. I'm sure you've had enough of being talked at, time to step up and dialogue.

Til soon!
: )
Mzzchief


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MZZCHIEF's Photo MZZCHIEF Posts: 10,408
5/16/16 10:42 A

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Hi kdavis, welcome to our team.
The generic levothyroxine works just as good as the brand names. Why? Bc the active (thyroxine, aka t4) is the exact same thing in all synthetic thyroid hormones. But here's the rub.

All thyroid formulations have different binders and fillers, bc the amount of actual thyroid hormone we need is so small. How small? Well the amount has been described before as how much could fit on the head of a pin.

Anyways, these binders and fillers added so that we can actually pick the pill up and put it in our mouths, change how much of the actual active (levothyroxine) is absorbed by our bodies. Bc manufacturers all have their own combination of binders and fillers, each brand gives you a different dose even though the dosage on the pill... say 150 levothyroxine, is the same.

So if you were on 150 synthroid one month, 150 levoxyl the second month, 150 levothroid the third month, you could be getting different doses of the same hormone... levothyroxine. Why? Bc of the different formulas and ingredients put in as fillers and binders that each manufacturer uses, give different levels of what we call "bioavailability" to the pill. Bioavailability being defined as how much of any substance is actually available for our bodies to use. Sometimes the difference is as great as 20%, off the STATED dose more or less in EITHER direction off the dosage... in our example 150 levothyroxine.

With Generic, no brand $4 levothyroxine, the drugstore buys whatever generic brand is selling for less. Yes, just like brand name thyroid meds, there's more than one generic!

So if you've been following along here, you can see where I'm going with this?

When you're on generics your dosage can vary from month to month, bc you never know which generic you are getting.

The solution to this is to ask for a 90 day supply. These meds come in bottles of 100 ask them to take out 10 pills and give you your thyroid in the bottle it came in. That way you will know you are getting the same dose, bc it's the same generic... and you will have the name of the generic on the bottle so that you can shop your prescription around and request that generic.

There may be other reasons why thyroid meds aren't helping you. I will post that in another answer as this one is long enough!

: )
Mzzchief





Edited by: MZZCHIEF at: 5/16/2016 (11:06)
New decade. Big world.
Hello, 60!
Primum non nocere.

Never underestimate the value of getting out of your own way.

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ndividual.asp?gid=732


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GRANMALINDA's Photo GRANMALINDA SparkPoints: (103,537)
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5/15/16 9:55 P

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Look into Naturethroid. I pay about 12-13/month out of pocket, my insurance does not cover it but it is cheaper than my synthroid. And I feel so much better than all the years on Synthroid.

Linda

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ROMANTILLY's Photo ROMANTILLY Posts: 9,193
5/12/16 11:22 A

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Armour is made from dessicated pig thyroid, Levothyroxine is synthetic. I can take Levothyroxine and started on 50 mcg. When my T3 levels came back (he never tests for T3 unless something is going on and for me my heart rate was in the 40's and my blood pressure was low) and he started my on T3 -Cytomel, he had to increase my Levothyroxine to 75 mcg. I have had my Cytomel increased once since that time and my labs show my levels as good. I actually feel better now than I have for a long time. This year my TSH came back lower than normal, so he wants to recheck my numbers in 90 days from my last exam. He has also given me a referral to an endo, but there is only one in the small town I live in and she has a wait list of more than 3 months to get in.

Lisa L. South, BSN, RN


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PAIGE2017's Photo PAIGE2017 Posts: 337
5/11/16 9:30 A

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My doctor told me the same as your pharmacist said. Basically they are two different pills that try to accomplish the same thing in different ways. Everyone is different and their body may respond better to one or the other. I have been on levothyroxine for years and have done really well with it and only needed one adjustment from my original dosage. But my aunt has been on both and needed numerous adjustments. I agree that an endocrinologist would be your best bet to help you get it figured out but I imagine that is expensive without insurance. I wish you luck! I hope that you are able to get it figured out!

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YIGOBUTTERFLY's Photo YIGOBUTTERFLY SparkPoints: (260,307)
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5/11/16 3:48 A

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I hope you have been able to see an endocrinologist who is really knowledgeable of the thyroid and not just diabetes. Many of them concentrate on diabetes because most of their patients are there for that.

Jane



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KDAVIS12508 Posts: 4
5/11/16 2:39 A

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I have no choice but to change my husband lost his job so no insurance and armour is expensive. And I have to take 2 pills 1-120mg and another 30 mg that's over 100 bucks a month. For Levothyroxin it's $4 a month. Pharmacist says they can't compare because they are so different and everybody's body isn't the same. Bla bla bla! So I can't even get an answer from them.

YIGOBUTTERFLY's Photo YIGOBUTTERFLY SparkPoints: (260,307)
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5/9/16 3:35 A

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I would ask a lot of questions before I agreed to a change and be firm about the no if that is what you decide.

Jane on Guam



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KDAVIS12508 Posts: 4
5/9/16 3:10 A

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I'm on 150mg of Armour my new doc wants me to switch cos my levels are very low still. Putting me on 150mcg Levothyroxin. Shouldn't these scripts be for different amounts? They don't calculate out to be the same right? I sure dont want to drop even lower! So sleepy and NO motivation.

Edited by: KDAVIS12508 at: 5/9/2016 (03:11)
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