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tazechip
tazechip, Board Certified Physician
Category: Endocrinology
Satisfied Customers: 32693
Experience:  Board certified in general practice with years of experience treating diabetics with multiple other medical conditions
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My son-in-law has been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid

Customer Question

My son-in-law has been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid and has gone from an active outging person to a depressed, inactive and sleepy person who has been on sick leave for the past 3 months. the doctors have carried out blood tests and have slowly in creased his dosage of levothyroxine to 175 microgrammes in the last few days. This does not seem to be having an effect. Could the production of T3 be the problem and what do you suggest?
Thank you
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Endocrinology
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Expert:  tazechip replied 2 years ago.
Hi--sorry for the delay but your question just became available to me. Do you know what his TSH level is?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Dear Sir,

Thank you for your response. His TSH level is 1.8 which was taken in early Sept. Incidentally, he is 50 years old.

Looking forward to your reply

Alan Jameson

Expert:  tazechip replied 2 years ago.
Hi Alan. How about his T3 and T4 levels? How long has he been on the levothyroxine? Has he also had his cortisol levels checked as well as a check for anemia and vitamin deficiencies?
tazechip, Board Certified Physician
Category: Endocrinology
Satisfied Customers: 32693
Experience: Board certified in general practice with years of experience treating diabetics with multiple other medical conditions
tazechip and other Endocrinology Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  tazechip replied 2 years ago.
Sorry Alan--did you get my questions?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Dear Sir, I got your questions.

My son-in-law must phone his doctor tomorrow for T3 & T4 levels, cortisol levels tests and vitamin deficiency tests. He has been on Thyroxine for about 3 years and he was not anemic in a test carried out 3 years ago.

Thanks

Alan Jameson

Expert:  tazechip replied 2 years ago.
OK Alan. It may be that he needs to be switched to Armour thyroid which is a natural thyroid hormone. It could also be a problem with low cortisol levels or with low vitamin D or B 12 levels. Please let me know what he finds out tomorrow
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Sorry for the delay. His T4 is 16 but has not been tested for T3. His cortisol levels have not been checked. He was tested for vitamin deficiencies 3 or 4 years ago when he had pneumonia but he cant remember the results but was not advised to take vitamin supplements.

Thanks

Alan Jameson

Expert:  tazechip replied 2 years ago.
OK Alan. The T3 is key here because that's the active hormone and he may still be hypothyroid and Armour thyroid contains T3 so I would switch him to that first. That said I would still check him for a possible low cortisol level.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you. I understand his doctor is going to check his T3 and cortisol levels at the end of this month after his present level of thyroxine, which he started about a week ago, has taken effect. Does it seem a prudent action to wait for so long to take these tests?

Expert:  tazechip replied 2 years ago.
Yes--if one increases the dose of levothyroxine it would take at least a month to look at the results
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for your advice and we will await the outcome of tests at the end of November

Expert:  tazechip replied 2 years ago.
Let me know how it goes Alan