overdose of t3

Hello my 17yr old son has taken 20 mcg T3 spit into 2 doses for two weeks now. Initially he felt better with more energy, but over the last few days he has suffered from really bad crampy stomach pains which eased a little on eating. Today we got his blood results which were. TSH .21(0.27 - 4.20) Free T4 18.6 (12.0 - 22.0) Free T3 9.7 (3.9 - 6.7) I am wondering if the stomach pains were due to overmobility of the stomach because of the T3. I gave him his second T3 of the day this afternoon just before I got the results.

I have booked a telephone consultation with his GP for tomorrow (earliest I could get) I'm worried that he is overdosed, he hasn't had any palpitations. He also takes levothyroxine 50mg at night. Should I tell him not to take his levo tonight? I feel terrible that he has been feeling so bad as I was the person who has been pushing for something other than levo. as he wasn't really well on just that.

My son doesn't want to know anything about his condition which means that I have to make all the decisions. Is there anything I can do to alleviate the symptoms of too much T3 in his body. So sorry just feel a bit panicked and guilty!

I would really appreciate any advise.

Many thanks

13 Replies

  • The FT3 reading is quite high and maybe the gut reaction could be due to this. There are so many receptors for T3 in the gut lining - so it could be too much T3 or just the cells waking up. Does he have Hashimotos ? Has he had all the tests for B12 Iron Ferritin Folates VitD. All these should be high in their ranges.

    It may be a good idea to split the doses even further - taking them four times a day - so there is not an over stimulation. If the pains continue then try reducing the dose and then re-start but with smaller amounts.

    How is his diet ? Gluten ? Gut health is so important and so difficult to control with young people....

  • Please, 'do not' panic.

    I also have a teenage son who absolutely refuses to even acknowledge he has a thyroid condition, he's hypothyroid.

    T3 is fast acting and it will be out of his system very very quickly, so if you decide not to give it to him all will settle in no more than 3 days and the worst side effects settle within the first 24 hours.

    If your son has the T3 in the 12 hours prior to the blood test then his fT3 levels in the blood will be high, that is 'normal' after a dose of T3, it does not tell you that you are over-medicated.....

    Of course I am not saying your son is not over medicated, nor that he is, that has to be assessed by his symptoms and all of his other conditions/medications etc, but not by the fT3 blood test taken within 12 hours of his last dose....

    It is difficult when you are medicating someone else apart from yourself, I do understand as I have done this with my own son, at the end he is now not medicated at all as he has refused to acknowledge he has a problem and was non compliant in taking his medication.

    I have talked to him and told him his thyroid problem will not disappear but I am willing to listen to him (he is just turned 18 now)...so we settled for doing bloods every 6 months and he will go back on the medication when he is ready....we have to talk to them do our best and leave them to make their decisions I think :(

  • My god I feel so much better reading this thread I to have a son who is so obviously hypo it scares me. He did go to our gp who said he was fine because his blood test results we're ok. But he is not at all I had to go to dr p to get my diagnosis after being ill for years and I don't want the same for him but he won't listen to me at all and it breaks my heart to watch himstruggle with this this horrible disease when there is treatment but he believes his dr and thinks I am talking rubbish x

  • It is more difficult than being ill yourself, ellemae, isn't it? It must be really hard if your son doesn't recognize it at all. I really hope he will accept help soon.

  • It is it breaks my heart and causes me massive stress but we just argue when I mention it :(

  • ellemaereading, my son is actually diagnosed by the GP, his TSH was over 6 and fT4 low in range...so at least I have the GP who actually prescribed Levo for him, so he knows I am not making it up, however he quickly changed over to NDT and then T3 as the Levo made him worse, now he refuses to take anything! hugs to you x

  • Thank you both so much, I had to go out so couldn't reply earlier.

    My son seems much better now, his tummy is not so painful and he is laughing and joking, so I feel much more relaxed. I just can't remember if I gave him T3 on the morning of the blood test, I don't think I did.

    Last time he was tested D3 Iron B12 were all normal but in the lower end of the range, I have to be careful because I could end up giving him loads of tablets and lots of people say too many is a bad thing. He was on iron, Vit D, cod liver oil, and vit B but sometimes all those were hard for him to take.

    We tried a gluten free diet for a week, but no change. Might try for longer another time as I think a week may not have been long enough. As far as we know he doesn't have hashimotos

    I am so grateful for your replies. We would be so ignorant if it wasn't for this site, and the support is fantastic. It's so difficult nobodysdriving isn't it with a teenager?, I'm sure the local surgery think I'm an overbearing mother because I have to speak for him as he's so disinterested even though he's had to have loads of time off sick! Many thanks again

  • he needs to be gluten free for at least 6 weeks to be sure whether he's feeling the benefits of it or not, for some the benefits become clear over weeks for some immediately x

  • Glad you son is on the up ! You say he does not have Hashimotos as far as you know - it is quite important to know - not that the treatment changes but it could be - that you can look at things differently. Having Hashimotos would indicate auto-immune illness affecting the thyroid...rather than just thyroid illness. A change of focus could be more acceptable. Auto-immune illness definitely needs gut issues addressed. I have a grandson of 15 who is gluten free and has been for years - and he really understands food - the good and the bad - for him !

    I have Hashimotos and Crohns so have to work at the gut issues ! At 67 I am just about getting there :-) Glad you are feeling more relaxed. Do hope your son is able to continue with taking the B12 VitD etc. as it will help him to feel well. The D3 capsules are very easy to take.....

  • Thank you Marz,

    My son has had an autoimmune screen and inflammatory markers test which was negative. No one mentioned Hashimotos presumably, that test rules it out? . He did also have a short synthatin test which was negative. My sons dad had Crohns when he was a teenager and had a major op.for that.

    When my son didn't get any better on Levo we went to see a private endocrinologist in Leamington Spa who prescribed the T3 and she said that she would look into adrenals if the T3 didn't work, trouble is we don't have a load of money so because one of the symptoms of low adrenals was stomach ache which has been a continuous problem (although not like the stomach pain he has just been experiencing) I thought of getting a saliva adrenal test done privately instead of going back to the private endocrinologist Our (supportive and very nice) GP wrote a referral for that, but then he sent a letter warning me that salivary testing does not have a great reputation and that there are not scientifically validated normal ranges for many of the hormone tests that use saliva.. He is also worried that we may be recommended all sorts of therapies of dubious proven benefit. Not sure what to do now :)

  • Hi Rosypo, Just because the synacthen test came back negative, it doesn't mean he doesn't have adrenal problems. If he has symptoms of low cortisol they should be doing dynamic testing as a statement made by the Society for Endocrinology. Take a look at the Pituitary Foundation website - pituitary.org.uk/support-fo... Read Jill's story but then scroll down to the bottom of the page.

    If you send me an email, I can send you a list of "dynamic" tests. enquiries@thyroiduk.org

  • Did your son take his T3 on the day of the blood test. If he did, this could well be the cause of the high FT3 reading. How long does he leave between each dose? possibly split into 4 doses although it is hard to do this with such a small tablet, but it can be roughly done.

  • If he's low in Vit D and B12 then he may well need to get to the higher end of the ranges.

    I dont understand "too many tablets is bad" if without them he is unwell.

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