Change of dose and manufacturer- side effects ?T4 and T3 better. What brand?

Hi, This is my first post. Have been on Levothyroxine for about 12 years for Hashimoto's. Ok for 5 years, but last 7 years, progressively worse with lots of misdiagnosis as well as unnecessary medications causing other problems. Have finally been able to piece together the puzzle of what might be happening thanks to UK websites and people willing to impart information. I was feeling like I was a total neurotic, with so many unexplained really nasty symptoms. Until recently I had just accepted all the other diagnosis, even though I knew I felt really strange when taking levothyroxine. I just didn't make any connection because my GP went by the TSH results alone, and I was diagnosed years ago, when I had no access to the internet or other help, therefore lack of knowledge and understanding. I have been so busy trying to hold down a job and look after my family that I forgot about myself, until I couldn't ignore things anymore, and started to do my own research. I'm annoyed at myself for not finding time to do this research before now, however hindsight is a wonderful thing. Everyone mentions the awful brain fog and confusing symptoms which is difficult for a patient to comprehend as well as busy GP's who often don't have time to look at you in a holistic way, therefore completely miss the problem. I realise now that I may have been having symptoms of over medication, and asked for my dose to be reduced to 75mcgs. But had to have two different manufacturer's and have experienced rashes and hair loss. Not only hair loss, but an unbearable heat and itching plus headache on top of my head. I had one episode of similar problem 5 years ago when Lansoprazole was prescribed and seemed to trigger hair loss and photosensitivity. The photosensitivity and increased allergies has stayed with me, although the hair loss improved until I recently changed my levo dose and manufacturer. Difficult to know if it's change in dose, different manufacturer ? different fillers or both. Can anyone tell me what brand of T4 they like best, and also what brand of T3 is most commonly used. Or can you get combined T3 and T4? I'm seeing an Endocrinologist next week for the first time privately as I felt I was getting nowhere with the NHS system. Sorry about the long post. Thanks.

12 Replies

  • Welcome to the forum, NancyG.

    There are 3 makes of generic Levothyroxine prescribed on the NHS, Mercury Pharma, Actavis and Wockhardt. Wockhardt has the least fillers but is only available in 25mcg. Liothyronine 20mcg is the only T3 licensed for use in the UK but Paddocks 5mcg T3 can be prescribed on a named patient basis and imported from the USA. Boots often stock this. The only combined T4+T3 available in the UK would be natural dessicated pig thyroid (NDT) which isn't generally available on the NHS but is easy enough to buy on the internet if you are willing to self medicate.

    I found palpitations and tremors worse on Mercury Pharma Levothyroxine so I prefer Actavis. Other members find Actavis is less potent than MP.

    It's unlikely that you had an allergic reaction to the active ingredient in Levothyroxine but it is quite possible to have a reaction to one of the fillers. If you experience itching or a rash again, take an antihistamine an hour before your Levothyroxine. If the itching or rash is relieved by the antihistamine then you are having a reaction and should try a different make.

    Hair shedding/loss can be due to over and under thyroid medication and also due to low ferritin/iron &/or zinc. If you post your recent thyroid blood results with the lab ref ranges (the figures in brackets after your results) members will advise whether you are optimally medicated.

    Ferritin (stored iron), vitamin D, B12 and folate are often low/deficient in hypothyroid patients and this can cause musculoskeletal pain, fatigue and low mood. Ask your GP to test them and post the results and ranges in a new question and we'll advise whether you need to supplement. Good levels of ferritin and vitD are very important in aiding absorption of thyroxine and converting T4 to T3.

  • Nancy, what a wonderful summation of what is going on in conventional medicine with regard to thyroid conditions. You are probably one of many who need more than a strictly TSH based T4 treatment. I could even venture, if they hadn't added thyroid interfering drugs, you may have done better on T4 (levo). Many of us have shared that pathway.

    We are all getting smart a bit late but better late than never. I've taken all forms of thyroid hormone and feel natural desiccated is the best to start with since pig hormone is so close to human chemistry but some people do well just adding T3 to their T4. Armour, Erfa, thyroid-s all seem to be well recommended but here is a list from the website that has given great information for many years. You can check the fillers in most brands but here are some of them.

    It's possible to obtain many of these on your own if necessary. I'm certain you can do better.

  • Hi!we must try not to beat ourselves up!I am in the same position-just about to start adding T3 for starters.Started on T4 in 1997 but been feeling a decline in health for many years & now believe I am hypo.Upping my T4 didn't help & have now been allowed to try adding T3 as new Gp agrees I am not converting properly.

    In 2011 I crashed into a depression with panic attacks & this is when my hair loss with extremely dry itchy scalp started & continued for 2 years.I now wash my hair with "Method Bloq"soap off Ebay,rinse with organic cider vinegar & slather it while wet with aloe vera gel bought off ebay in kilo tubs!

    I started to climb out of depression in March 2013 & my scalp is a lot better.If I had been prescribed T3 or deissicated thyroid in 2011,would I have avoided 2 years of living hell?I knew all the theory from here & other sites,but was in a state of mental paralysis.The doctors only prescribed Cetalopran,to which I had an awful reaction.

    So,I am starting from now,as I cannot change the past,only learn from it.Its hard not to feel regret,especially when the mood sinks.My moods swing about all over the shop now on a daily basis,as does my physical energy.

    Onwards & upwards together?

  • Naomi8 if you PM me I can give you a number where I buy my products for shampoo that makes you hair stop falling out. I am a licensed Cosmetologist.

    Good luck

  • Perhaps you would be good enought to let me have this info too.

  • Yes, I will let you know when I get more info.

  • Pm me and I will give you my number. X x

  • Hair falling out is a symptom of something else and that should be addressed. I lose hair and it grows back, over and over again. Never had this before i developed full blown Hashimotos and Hypothyroidism. How would shampoo help?

  • Thank you-how do I PM you?

  • Just go to my name and just press the button for me, I will reply. I am buying some this week just to see what it really does. I have a finger print in the front of my forehead that looks like like some one just removed the hair.i am getting my order this week.i swim so let you know. X x x

  • cane all have the information regarding hair loss shampoo thank you


  • It is by nashi, you can buy it at Salon Connect in Essex. Chelmsford. It does work. Sorry have not been on here for a while x x x tell them Rita said to call about theNashi hair loss product. X x

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