Thyroid UK

No more Eltroxin - bad reaction to generics. Can anyone help?

Hello, I was diagnosed with myxoedema in the early nineties, and a couple of years ago was switched to Etroxin brand levothyroxine (requested by doc on repeat prescriptions) because I was having problems with the generics; racing heartbeat, lack of sleep, etc. That was fine until recently when it became impossible to get Eltroxin.

At first it was just 'there's a shortage', but now my pharmacist tells me that Goldshield have been taken over by Mercury Pharma. He is trying his best to help me, but neither of the generics we've tried so far have done anything for me but make me feel extremely unwell. I just want to crawl into a corner and hide, sleep all day, not do anything. If I walk, or do anything in the kitchen, I feel as if I'm going to die. It's an all-over malaise, almost indescribable. I also have a very upset stomach which really isn't helping my acid reflux.

I am going to get the genetic test, because I have NEVER felt 'the new woman' my doctor promised I'd be once I started on replacement therapy. Ever. I have bloating, digestion problems, raging itchiness, muscle aches and pains, irregular heart beat and high BP. Anxiety, sleeplessness, weight gain, memory and concentration problems, dry skin, flaking nails etc. You name it. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia literally two or three months after the thyroid dx and I'm wondering if that is a red herring and I've simply never really responded to the thyroxine.

What can I do to help myself? I hate going back to the doc all the time, and if it's true that Eltroxin tabs are a thing of the past, what good will it do anyway?

I'm wondering if there's something in the generics I'm allergic to, because I have multiple food and drug allergies, but I really need some help and advice - PLEASE!!

4 Replies

I am not medically qualified but I would guess you may have been undermedicated - probably kept 'within the reference range' and that's why you still have all the above clinical symptoms.

I definitely agree with you re the generic levothyroxine as I was more ill on it than before diagnosis. The Endocrinologist added 10mcg of T3 to a reduced T4 and I felt a lot better. When the chemist gave me the brand Eltroxin instead of the generic it made me feel better still as it agreed with me.

I don't know if your GP (as you are ill on generic T4) will prescribe a Natural Dessicated Thyroid Hormone on a trial basis to see if that suits you better. I myself use Nature-throid which is hypoallergenic and there is Westhroid (this appears to have had a change of name to WP Thyroid (ie Westhroid Pure)

The GP can prescribe on a named patient basis - details here:-

If he wont you may have to go private or ask for a referral to an Endocrinologist. If you email she has a list of sympathetic NHS Endos and private doctors.

If you have had a recent thyroid gland blood test please post the results with the ranges (figures in brackets) for someone to comment upon them- on a new question . Also if you haven't had a Vitamin B 12, Vit D, iron,ferritin and folate ask for these as the first two in particular are usually deficient in hypo. Both deficient B12 and Vit D can also cause problems.


Thank you so much for your response!

I might well be low in B12, since I have to be very careful with yeast and try not to eat commercially produced bread, anything with yeast extract in it, beer, Marmite etc. I might try adding that in to see if it helps.

I believe my doctor (like most) will be resistant to prescribing a natural hormone. I've asked once before. I've never had an endocrinologist consultation. I guess I could ask for one of those!

I'll also request a copy of my blood results. Thanks again!


Before you supplement with Vitamin B12 do have a blood test first. If you are deficient, you must only supplement with methylcobalamin Vitamin B12 and Amazon have a selection.

Your GP may well say your B12 is 'in range' but this is a link for information. an extract:-

‘B12 deficiency is more common after the age of 60 and, once levels fall below 500 pg/ml (picograms per millilitre — the normal range being 500 to 1,000), the brain starts to deteriorate at twice the usual rate, making memory loss six times more likely,’ he says.


Thank you Shaws. I'll talk to my doctor about that.


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