t3 mystery of why none left

i emailed mercury pharma and asked why there is none left and what the issue was.

they replied and said that they are short of active pharm ingrediant which manufacturers it, cant remeber the exact words as my memory just goes blankquickly these days , but they wsaid they are tryin to source some unlicencesd med instaed in the interim.. perhaps endos should now agree to ndt! AND THEY ALSO SAID THEY REALISE THAT MANY PATIENTS RELY ON THIS MED AS THEY CANT TAKE THYORXINE!!!!!!!!!!!!

30 Replies

  • That's not a very good thing for them to say sourcing an unlicensed drug. NDT is no good to sufferers that can't tolerate any form of T4

  • If they do so above-board and with the agreement of the MHRA, and the product is already properly regulated within at least some markets, then I do not see a problem.

    (One product that would seem to meet all requirements is Thybon Henning 20 from Germany. One advantage it has over some other possible contenders is that it is the same dose - not 25 mcg like many others.)

    I think (but would need to have it confirmed) that in the situation of supply difficulties, any pragmatic solution can be considered by the regulatory bodies such as the MHRA.


  • well yes rod i agree,----i hardly think that merury pharma would jeopodise thier reputation without doing it all above board. it is more than they dare do.

  • When they talk about sourcing an "unlicensed" medication, it simply means a medication that is not licensed in this country. So it could be T3 from America or somewhere in Europe. They would have to obtain a license to bring it in but being a company that already probably has one to import unlicensed drugs, getting one for whatever it is on this occasion will probably be quite simple for them.

  • thankyou so much.

  • Maybe they mean they will get some T3 from Turkey, Greece, Italy or similar, where (as we know) T3 is available VERY cheaply. Call me a sceptic, but if they buy it cheap, I suspect they will sell it to the NHS at the same exhorbitant rate as their own product!!!

  • If wholesalers can get branded T3 from elsewhere can a GP specify a brand on the prescription while the generic is unavailable? I understand the dosage can be different but in theory is this possible?

  • not sure jane but you can email mercury pharma- in fact anyone can email them and get their own information.

  • It is possible but probably very unpopular. All forms of special import tend to cost a lot of money.

    At least one person here gets 5 microgram tablet of liothyronine from the USA. The apparent price is frightening and, in my opinion, unjustified.


  • .....we are only able to buy one packet of T3 at a time here in Crete at the moment - but as there are as many Pharmacies as there are shoes shop - 65 at the last count in Xania - then we can trip from one to the other and gather up several packets. Am stockpiling in case the UK steals our stocks !

    We have a Pharmacy in our village - two in the next village and so on - so we are well served and of course no prescriptions required. Wish I could help out in some way especially with the financial side of things - T3 is under 2 euro - how can that be ? The box and leaflet almost costs that ! Also tabs are 25mcg - which makes them an even bigger bargain ! Someone somewhere is making huge lumps of money.

    Hopefully it will all soon be resolved.

  • Hi Marz,

    This is very timely info, my daughter sets off for a week to Crete tomorrow. I will be giving her a shopping list.

    I have literally just got home from the GP (who knew nothing about it), to get a prescription, and the Pharmacist.

    I have the last 2 tubs he has in stock ( he agreed to put them aside for me when I went in yesterday to alert him - he also knew nothing about the shortage - he does now ). He has rung round his group and there are only 2 more tubs left, he is getting them for me.

    After that, there will be none in Edinburgh.

    Would you be kind enough to pm me with a) the name of T3 in Crete and b) the cost, so I can give my daughter funds? Providing this does not break any forum rules, fingers crossed.

    Thanks in advance,


  • No rules broken! ;)


  • Agree with Helvella above :-)

    Thybon is available (under prescription in Ireland) and my endo changed me to that when there was an efficacy problem with my other T3.

    It's Thybon* 20 Henning, made in Germany.

  • I certainly wouldn,t take an unlicensed drug. I have some T3 in my cupboard, as Im back on l100mcg/125mcg alternate days, I wasn,t keen on the T3. Got a follow up appoint in July with my Endo, so see how this dose is suiting me. I,ve been on Thyroxine since 2001 with no problems - it just goes to show, we are all different as far as Meds are concerned. Kath

  • Why not? We are not talking about an "under the counter in a dirty brown paper bag". The only product that would be provided by Mercury Pharma would be a perfectly standard product that just doesn't have the piece of paper for the UK. And, as I said above, it would only be done with regulatory clearance.

    Many patients actually are prescribed medicines outside their licences anyway. Very often patients are unaware of that.

  • I doubt very much that any GP would prescibe medication that are not licensed in this country, less of course it was a "study" and the patient was aware of that.

  • Many GPs prescribe medicine that is not licensed in this country. For a very relevant example, people do get prescribed desiccated thyroid (Erfa, Nature-Throid or Armour). Some even get that on an NHS prescription.

    Certainly, many GPs want to run away from doing so, but it is being done.

    Another example was vitamin D in high doses - for which there was no UK licensed product (though there is at least one such product now).


  • if this helps we get--Now Foods, Vitamin D-3, Highest Potency, 5,000 IU, 120 Softgels from amazon uk 9 quid others sell it also & also i was told by Tollesbury Pharmacy ( listed under thyroid UK ) that a gp can give a script for armour, that it's not about if it's licensed or not but that as long as it's not on the dis-allowed list then it's allowed..

  • This happened a year or so ago. I rang the manufacturers then and was told almost the same thing. Isn't time the big pharmacy companies, who seem to have a monopoly of supply, were legally

    obliged to guarantee the supply of the drugs they sell to the NHS at exorbitant prices.

  • thanks Pettals I have emailed them as I am on T3 only and NDT or anything else is not an option for me, I tolerate some NDT but not much and certainly not anywhere near enough to make me well :(

    I have told them they are also responsible for us getting ill if we cannot get any liothyronine and as such they must 'act now' in collaboration wtih the NHS and MHRA to obtain another source immediately before we run out.

    I personally now have 4 weeks supply but the production issue is possibly long term and certainly for a couple of months minimum.

  • you are welcome NBD. XX

  • I went to pick up my prescription today, ordered it early and surprise surprise it is not in. I told the pharmacist that I have 9 days supply left. He said that the distribution place is expecting some in next Friday so should have some by Saturday. I said that if it wasn't in by Saturday that I would have run out which isn't acceptable and said that he is required by law I believe to source it elsewhere. He is calling me back later and I have printed off a previous post about how to say what you need to say to them and also about Thybon Henning 20 from Germany.

    Going to contact my GP and get him to order another prescription so I have a larger back up.

  • Might be worth a flight?

    Hyphypo, can you please tell us the name in Crete?

    I shall check in Spain. Go on the 14th. Hope to go on it soon.

  • really!!! wish they would tell my GP. He does not believe me.

  • It is the work of a moment to check on, say, this link:



  • bookmarked. that explains why my pharmacist couldn't get me eltroxin...

  • Has been on Thyroid UK news for some time:


    Mercury Pharma Levothyroxine is 100% the same product as Eltroxin.


  • For clarity, I meant the GP could use this link - not getting at you, Tavy!

  • Thanks rod. :)

  • would be interesting to know how much our extra GP appointments are costing the nhs because every time we walk in the door either symptomatic or to ask for changes it costs. I wonder if it was bad enough whether they would charge it back?

You may also like...