Does a small increase in Levothyroxine normally result in feeling worse?

When I found this site I had been Hypo for around 15 months and had felt fairly well for most of that time but had started to go down hill - feeling really tired and having to sleep loads plus aching joints and the wretched Plantar Fascitis in one foot. Having read on here about the importance of vitamins I had a full blood test and lo and behold found I was very low on Vit D and low in Folate and Ferritin. I immediately started on supplements and soon felt heaps better - the only remaining problem was the aching feet, apart from that I felt reasonably OK. I have read a lot about how my dose (50mcg) of Levo is normally a starter dose, and bearing in mind my blood results T4 10.98 (9 - 20) and TSH 1.66 (0.55 - 4.78) I thought that maybe a small increase would be all that was needed to make me feel 100% so yesterday I increased my Levo to 75mcg (taken at 3am in the morning instead of 6am 'cos I just happened to wake-up). Yesterday was rubbish - I felt odd and thought my heart was racing (it was actually 80 beats per minute resting so not a problem) and I was incredibly irritable. I also had far more hot flushes than normal and last night slept for longer than is normal for me and have woken up with Plantar Facsitic in both feet! DUH - back to 50 mcg me thinks because feeling just reasonably OK is far better than how I feel today. Have other people experienced problems when raising their dose, even such a small amount?

12 Replies

  • Yes I have had this. I noticed a change in dose affects me negative initially and it can take a while to settle down. However it dose settle down for me after a while. Is your doctor prescribing the increase or did you just up your dose?

  • Hi I just upped the dose myself so I think I will wait until I see my Doctor in September, get my T3 tested and then have a look at increasing it if necessary.

  • Also do you get your T3 tested, it is really useful when trying to understand what is happening.

  • when your folate is low this often correlates with low Vitaman B12, did you have this checked and if so what was the result.

  • Yes I usually feel worse after an increase but then it slowly settles down and I feel better than before the increase ;) xx

  • Thanks I will see my doctor for my blood test at the beginning of September then try again if it seems appropriate - fingers crossed.

  • how long does it usually take you to feel better? i have just upped my dose from 75 to 100 and feel really weird, irritable, dizzy.....

  • Hi, since my post two years ago I have been on 75 and am virtually back to my pre-hypo self. It didn't take long for the effects of upping my dose to stop and I think supplements, going gluten free and, quite simply time have all helped me to feel so much better - good luck.

  • It usually takes me a couple of weeks to notice the difference when I increase my T4. Like you I have plantar fasciitis which came on suddenly in March. I have increased my T4 by 25 mcg every other day with the blessing of my endo, and I did feel much better after two weeks. I've also found that seeing a physio and wearing arch supports has greatly helped the PF. Your last T4 result was quite near the bottom of e range, so it looks like there is room to manoeuvre. I hope your doctor will help. LB

  • It is a real pain (literally) isn't it - and to think when my doctor told me I was Hypothyroid I just shrugged - I didn't have a clue about how being Hypothyroid can effect so many parts of your body and brain in so many miserable ways. I will try the arch supports and request physio and maybe even sweet talk my husband into massaging my feet!! I will also speak to the Doctor about increasing my Levo based on my results rather than the fact that I thought I'd try it. Thanks so much for replying - I hesitate to say that it is nice to find someone with the same problems but you know what I mean. x

  • I have recently found its "swings & roundabouts" for me.My lovely doc lowered my dose from 150 levo as I was having trouble sleeping and had a few heart palps.

    Now on 125 and falling asleep around 2pm and gaining wait big time....whats a bod to do ? you are not alone...x

  • Hi Sam - just a thought but have you tried alternating your dose - 150 one day then 125 the next? Seems to work for some people so may be worth a go ? Thanks for taking the time to reply and good luck x

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