Are you on thyroid replacement therapy?

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Are you on thyroid replacement therapy?

Are you on thyroid replacement therapy?

Are you on thyroid replacement therapy?

Nothing much has changed over the number of years in thyroid replacement therapy. Levo- thyroxine is still the gold standard. But there are certain aspects of long- term thyroxine treatment which are important.

Patients have usually prescribed a fixed dose of the drug to be taken daily for the long term. But our body releases thyroxine in a much complex manner. It secretes as per the demand. As a result, you can have a mismatch between what your body needs and what you are prescribed.  For this reason, it is important to rely upon yourself for good thyroid health on a daily basis rather than simply rely on regular visits to your GP or Endocrinologist.

Starting treatment with thyroxine

The dose required is slowly increased over the weeks. During this period thyroid function test is repeated every 4 to 6 weeks to adjust the dose of medication until thyroid function returns to normal.

What time are you taking your Levothyroxine?

Thyroxine is not properly absorbed in a full stomach. It should be taken an empty stomach.

according to the American Thyroid Association taking Levothyroxine with or too soon before or after a meal or snack could reduce absorption to 64%, from a high of 80%.

Take it regularly

As thyroxine is stored in the body even if you miss one dose it may not have an obvious effect on your body. f a dose is missed on one day you can always take double the dose the next day. If you take double the dose one day you can miss the dose the following day.

Storage of medication

Levo thyroxine is temperature-sensitive medication thus it should be stored in a cool place at home.

The drug interaction

Many common medications interfere with the absorption of thyroxine for ex – iron, calcium, antacids. So if you start taking any new medication consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Another disease can affect absorption

Coeliac disease, Lactose intolerance, gastritis may interfere wth absorption.

Are you pregnant?

In pregnancy, the level of hormone fluctuates greatly and you need frequent visits to the doctor to monitor your hormone level.

During menopause

Symptoms of menopause and hypothyroidism may are similar so its important your hormone level is monitored as the clinical picture may be confusing.

When to consult a doctor

If your symptoms are not improving even after taking thyroxine.

When you notice a lump in your neck.

You have an enlarged thyroid gland.

You are planning a child or you are pregnant.