Updated: Mar 25, 2020
Wheather You are hypothyrpid, have Hashimoto's thyroidities, do not have totally or partially thyroid or are hyperthyroid ended to be hypothyroid, highly probable You are taking medications.
A short recap of thyroid hormones:
TSH, produced by Your brain, to tell Your thyroid how much hormones to produce
T4, produced by Your thyroid. It is an inactive hormone needed to make T3
T3, produced by Your thyroid and peripheral tissues. It is the active hormone
Reverse T3, produced by Your thyroid and peripheral tissues. It is the inactive form of T3 (made when free T4 is high, and Your body cannot make T3)
What are the most coomon medications?
Synthroid or Levothyroxine (T4 medications)
Cytomel (T3 medications)
NDT (T4 & T3)
The most popular medications are in fact Synthroid and Levothyroxine. However, most patients still have symptoms, despite the use of this medication.
Why? The 'problem' resides in the fact that these drugs contain only T4 hormone.
T4 hormone is also known as the inactive thyroid hormone. To be active T4 must be converted to T3 hormone in the peripheral tissues of Your body.
And this is the exact problem of Levothyroxine and Synthroid. In case of Hypothyroidism, Your body will convert efficiently T4 into T3. This will cause You to have symptoms, despite the use of medications.
But then, why are Your blood tests in range, if You have symptomps?
T4 hormones will reduce TSH production
As T4 increases Your body converts it into reverse T3
High reverse T3 will false Your blood work and make You symptomatic
These are the reasons why when You go to Your doctor complaining about symptoms, Your doctor does not believe You. Because Your blood work looks good, while in reality, it is not.
What to do? If You take T4 medications and still experience:
It means You should start using T3 medications.
How to use it?
Liothyronine is a T3 only thyroid medication. The most common brand name is Cytomel.
So, who should take it?
People who have a normal TSH but still remain symptomatic despite taking thyroid medication (T4 medications)
Patients with high reverse T3
Those who suffer from leptin and insulin resistance
People with treatment-resistant weight loss
Patients with treatment-resistant depression and treatment-resistant bipolar disease
*Before starting any medications, You must consult Your physician. These are only general guidelines.
Dosages are divided into 5mcg, 25mcg and 50mcg.
We usually recommend to start with the lowest and then slowly increase, only if there are no side effects and the patient is still having symptoms.
Are any possible side effects of T3 medications?
Yes, and these are hair loss (only for a short period of time), nausea, headaches, heart palpitations.
You can divide the dosage of T3 medication in the day. For example, if You start with 5mcg, You can take 2.5mcg in the morning and 2.5mcg in the afternoon.
If side effects persist You can opt for Sustained Release T3 medications (check it out this video to know more about Sustained Release T3 medications).