About to order Armour, just a few questions

Hi everyone

Hope you are all well. Or as well as can be :-)

The result of a recent visit to my endo was to try raising my T4 to 150 (from 100) and take out the T3 (20mg). She said to do this gradually (reduce t3 by 10, increase t4 by 25 and the same again after a week).

I feel like crap. Soooooo tired, bloated and have put on 4lb (so depressed about this). I know that t3 is more instant than t4 so obviously taking this out has caused me to feel like this, I'm having to wait for the t4 to kick in!

The reason she has done this is because my TSH was suppressed, my t4 was under range and even my t3 was a bit low although within range. She wants me to go back to t4 only but a higher dose and see if this helps. She said that she has had patients who put in a bit of T3 then go back to t4 only and she has never had to see them again.

If this fails, she has given me a prescription for 2 grains of armour.

I have worked this out as 96 of t4and 18 t3. If this is a true comparison, I would slightly be under medicated and it was being under medicated on 100 t4 and 20t3 that took me to the endo for an appt in the first place.

Sooo.... My questions are...

Is armour stronger and more "direct" than Levo? ie, do you react to it better than Levo and absorb it better??

How have people felt by swapping Levo for armour? Is there a transition period whereby you feel crap for weeks then better or can it be quite quick when you feel better? The reason I ask is I own two gift shops, November and December are my busiest months and I just cannot be unwell. I HAVE to be fit!

I have heard so many good things about armour but I have to admit to feeling apprehensive about taking it and am wondering wether to just carry on with 150levo until after this period in work and start armour in January but I'm feeling crap anyway so this makes me think just blooming take the armour!!!!

The other thing that worries me is when I was on t4 only to start with, it was easy to keep track of my ranges and true to form, when I felt crap, my blood test revealed my t4 level had dropped. I often wonder where I would have got to if my levo was raised properly in the beginning instead of adding in t3. When t3 was added, my ranges shot all over the place, my t4 dropped out of range and my TSH wouldn't move, hence our attempts at now trying t4 only again but at a higher level.

I'm sorry to babble but Armour obviously contains T3, so therefore, by not feeling well enough on a T4/t3 combo, is armour really going to make me feel any better or should I just continue with the T4 only? I know it's hard to say as we are all different but would like to hear others opinions on this

Deb x

12 Replies

  • I've been on all of them. I'm old school and think everyone should be taking an NDT which I took after six years on Synthroid....six poor years. But I think the most important thing is to be on the right dose which I think is easier to determine with an NDT rather than adding T3, reducing T4, adding T4, etc. etc........ and then what is going on with the T4?.....is it become reverse T3 which blocks T3? I think NDT is easier to adjust for those reasons.

    Since you added T3, you must have decided that your T4 was not converting properly? If that is true, I would definitely switch to Armour but of course you should check the cofactors to find the reason you weren't converting properly. You need good levels of iron, ferritin and folate as well as good adrenal function.

    I don't see a downside to using Armour in the right dose but others may disagree.

  • Thanks Heloise for your reply. The t3 was added as I still had symptoms on t4 and the endo added in a bit to see how I went. I still had symptoms so she added in more. I still didn't feel 100% after that. So that's where we are now! Such a blooming journey. I think I'm going to just try the Armour after reading everyone's replies.

  • I believe the chances are good that you will do well on Armour because you were having some problem with T4 that may be alleviated by the natural product. No guarantee, but I have high hopes for you. Best wishes.

  • I do hope so :-) thanks Heloise x

  • I felt much better almost immediately after starting Armour. I had been on a T4/T3 combo before that but it wasn't successful. I realise now with hindsight that the dose of T3 just wasn't high enough - it wasn't the same amount of T3 that was subsequently in the Armour. I don't know therefore whether it was the dose or the actual meds.

    If you can get this on the NHS then you are doing well. The downside is that you may do very well on it and they then take it away because they are not meant to be prescribing it. If you can afford to buy it that's fine but it must be a horrible shock for anyone to have to go back to T4 after trying Armour.

  • Thank you Claudiasmum. I too think that I was under medicated on my t4/t3 combo but I think my suppressed TSH has made the endo cautious despite all we read on the matter. She is however a fantastic endo and I do trust her advice. She is very willing to get me well and for that I am extremely grateful. She is a private endo and I will buy my Armour. so hopefully, if it works, is won't have to go back to Levo.

    Would you say that the amount of armour you were prescribed at the start was the correct amount? How much Levo were you taking before you switched and did it convert to the same amount and did this amount make you better or did you have to up the grains?

  • I was on 200 levo and then three grains of armour and various doses of T3/T4 combo in between. Three grains of armour seems to be my perfect dose.

  • I don't pretend to be an expert but having read various posts on here for two years, a repeated theme is that once on a T4/T3 combo your TSH will be suppressed, your T4 will only be in the middle of the range or lower, and your T3 will be close to the top of the range. That appears to be perfectly normal, and indicates that your endo may be ignorant of this. If you were feeling OK on the t4/T3 combo then it might be best to argue with your endo and stay on it. If your t3 was not at the top of the range there might be room for more, but a suppressed TSH is certainly normal. LB

  • Hi Lisa, I also thought this and yes, I still wonder wether I should have stayed on t4/t3 and raised the t3 but I don't think she would have done this. To be honest, I too worry about my ranges because if my lovely endo was to leave, I'd have to go back to my GP and she would freak with my ranges!! I still believe that I can feel well and have readings within range, which I am exploring and I pray that Armour will do this

  • Good luck and I hope it works out for you! LB

  • You are very fortunate if she's given you a prescrip for Armour. As you were on T3/T4 previously, your blood tests couldn't conform to the ones the GP uses as they are for levothyroxine only, i.e. T4. Because you took T3 as well, this reduces the TSH and T4 (you're taking less).

    By prescribing Armour, you are lucky in that your body will have the whole thyroid hormones (T4, T3, T2, T1 and calciton) which our bodies lack.

    Best of luck.

    This link for info - you can bypass the first question.


  • Thank you Shaws, some very useful reading there for me. It leaves me with no doubt in sending off this Armour prescription and getting started on it! Think I just needed to read useful information to convince me of what to do.

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