Itching with Armour

Hi all, today I increased my Armour Thyroid from 60mg to 90mg. I took 60mg in the morning and 30mg in the early afternoon. Now, I have itching around my thyroid area, (around the small goiter), on the left and there's a bit of swelling), I am trying not to scratch but its really itching. My next appointment with my Dr is next week Monday. He is supposed to fax my Armour prescription to the pharmacy tomorrow but now I don't know what to do because if the Armour is causing the itching then I can't continue with it. But then what do I take for the rest of the week? and I've only got four 30mg grains left. I am from the UK. Also, am lactose intolerant so which NDT would be best option? Thank you

33 Replies

  • hi there can't you phone either your doctor or pharmacy to see if you can get any advice before it causer any more soreness is the only word i can think off please seek advice asap even if you have to ring 111 they can help you take care let me know how you get on my friend Alan

  • Thanks Alan

  • hi Julia your most welcome hope your feeling better today take care Alan

  • Julia35, I suggest you reduce back to 1 grain and see whether the itching resolves. As far as I know, only Armour and Erfa are lactose-free.

  • Thanks Clutter, I will do that. I find this diseases and all issues of sorting the dose really frustrating. One minute am feeling so much better and the next I get this itching, am so upset right now. Sorry for the rant.

  • Julia, take an antihistamine to relieve the itching, it will stop you scratching at it. It's miserable and upsetting being itchy, but that's not what I call ranting :)

  • Thanks Clutter.

  • and naturethroid

  • Suze, NatureThroid contains Lactose Monohydrate (traceable amount as part of desiccated thyroid powder USP)

  • Thanks Clutter, I haven't looked at this for ages. Yes traceable seems ok with me, not good about the palm oil and then I don't like the look of talc and other not so nice ingredients in thyroid-s.

    I cannot tolerate normal levothyroxine due to the fillers.


  • Suze, I didn't tolerate Levothyroxine on it's own but adding T3 calmed adverse effects. Don't think it was fillers though as I tried different brands and cross checked fillers with other meds I was taking. I even stopped the meds I'd been taking prior to Levothyroxine without any improvement in tolerating Levothyroxine. Got me off ADs anyway :-D

  • I would be very surprised if it's the armour. Why have you upped your dose? As it's still pretty small I am thinking you are working your way up to a maintenance dose. Itching from Meds is not localised to thyroid area it's all over. This is much more likely to be a thyroid storm and not at all related to taking a bit more armour. Try not to panic. Good luck hope it goes away today.

  • Thanks

  • Any better? Did you take all the meds and have you still got the strange itchy neck?

  • Hi, yes I do, but not as bad as Sunday, had to reduce my dose to 1 and a half grain.

  • It sounds as if you may have a reaction but you could try to see if you have by taking 1 anti-histamine tablet before your next dose of Armour and if you don't itch you will be sensitive to something in it.

    Nature-throid is hypoallergenic. There is also a 'sister NDT' from the same company but I think it is more expensive called WP Thyroid.

  • Thank you and thanks for the links.

  • I am also trying to increase my dose of Armour. I don't get itching but my thyroid swells. I have just reduced my dose again to see if that is what is causing it. Although the increase has stopped the aching and I am sleeping again I have been feeling dizzy on the increased dose.

  • Sorry to hear that, my thyroid didn't swell, it was just really itchy, like eczema. My doctor advised I increase by a smaller dose and take the dose 3 times a day. I'am hoping this works. Good luck

  • Hi, I've never taken Armour but I was taking NaturThroid - a naturally dessicated thyroid NDT that I asked my doctor to prescribe after trying Levothyroxine and finding it utterly unsuitable and unacceptable to my body - for more than a year with excellent results...but when I had an attack of rash and terrible itching over most of my body for several weeks, I was in a bit of a panic because I was overseas for 2 months and unable to find a doctor that wouldn't do the automatic "take a levo and call me in two weeks for another blood test" BS that is ruining the health of millions around the world.

    I switched to an over the counter NDT called ThyroGold that I've been taking for several months with good results, though I don't have any idea whether I have the right dosage and am due for another consultation when I get home from my current trip also away from home.

    ThyroGold is from cows in New Zealand that don't have any of the hormones and other growth-promoting garbage of US and presumably other country's meat producing industries.

    However, it's likely you don't have access to ThyroGold if you're not living in the states as that's where it comes from.

    I recently ran out of Thyro on this 2 month trip (forgot to order enough in advance) so scrambled around and found an NDT also produced from cows in New Zealand and Australia in this's Allergy Research Thyroid. You can find it on the net.

    I've taken it for a couple weeks and it's filled the gap until I get home and start back on ThyroGold and see a better doctor than the one who gave me the AMA-standard (and terribly flawed IMHO) bloodtest-only diagnosis of hypothyroidism. He was right about the hypo but the levo is a disaster. You hear doctors parrot the big pharma-taught line that Armour and other NDTs are not standardized and vary in concentration but in fact it's levo that has had attention from the food regulatory bodies in America for inconsistent formulations. But AMA stonewalls the bloodtest-only diagnosis, disdains the landmark work of the late, great Broda Barnes and Mark Starr and other doctors, and even punishes doctors that don't march in lockstep with the limited and sometimes wholly erroneous bloodtest for TSH, T3 etc.

    I don't know if any of this is new or relevant to your situation, I don't even know if the itching was caused by a flawed batch of NatureThroid...but when I stopped taking it and went on the ThyroGold, my symptoms disappeared, though they did reappear a few weeks later buyt only for a couple days, and no recurrences in the 6 months since.

    I was also under a great deal of stress at the time of the rash and that may have been the mitigating factor.

    But at least you can find some Thyroid without a prescription for the interim just to see if it helps...I have read of Armour having changed the formulation a few years back and that could be part of the ongoing problem...I honestly don't know as I've never taken it.

    Also, I'm hypothyroid for about 4 years now and am not in any way connected financially or personally with any of the above mentioned products...I'm a "regular" person just like yourself, trying to feel better or at least stay well.

    Hope this gives you some thoughts that lead to resolution of your symptoms.

    I'm also reading a book which is blowing my mind: Hypothyroidism type 2? the epidemic by Dr. Mark Starr. It's unnerving to read his conviction from years of practice that hypothyroidism is the great misdiagnosed illness of our times. Must read for anyone with thyroid challenges.

    good luck! Hope your rash clears up soon.


  • Thanks for sharing, I read part of that book and am planning to get the whole book because my hypo points to type 2. At the moment an still reading the Stop The Thyroid Madness and will move on to Dr Mark Starr's book.

  • I had a lot of itching when I first started Armour and when increasing my dose. Sometimes it was just around the thyroid area as you describe but sometimes more generalised. It did settle. I still sometimes get the itching on my neck but usually if I change my dose. I think the book 'Stop the thyroid madness' mentions itching and that it is unlikely to be the Armour. I could never increase my dose by 30mg and still have to make any changes in 1/4 grain (15mg) increments.

  • Thanks, I think I will try increasing by a smaller dose and see.

  • Hi, I am dairy intolerant but find Erfa good. I have been trying to reduce my doseage but then suffered horrible skin problems and felt awful. Antihistamines may be a problem as they nearly all contain lactose and always make me worse. Maybe you need to increase more slowly, I find that helps. Good luck.

  • Thanks, yes spoke to my Doctor today and he said the same.

  • Desperation are you still on erfa and is it still good for you? Many are complaining about it being changed...

  • I am still on Erfa and it still seems to be working. I am still trying to reduce Levo as medics have frightened me about the effects of overprescribing. Luckily all tests have come back clear so far. 

  • Hi Desperation. Can you tell me what the expiry date is on your bottle of ERFA? Why are you taking Levo with it? ERFA is supposed to conatin the complete range of thyroid hormones...

  • Interesting! It was Synthroid and Eltroxin that mad me itch (and sweat!). Do you have compounding pharmacies in the UK that can make up a batch to suit you? Mine was made up in a compounding pharmacy in New Zealand. Brands like Armour and Naturethroid are not available here, although I understand our compounded brand is similar to Armour. Reactions must be due to the fillers that are used. I am also lactose intolerant, but fine since using our compounded NDT.

  • Thanks, will do some research.

  • mongolian are you still good on the compounded thyroid? Can you ask if they will ship to America?

  • I seem to be OK on the compounded thyroid, which I am told by the Compounding Pharmacy is identical to Armour Thyroid.  both contain lactose as a filler.  however I do have gut problems and was recently diagnosed with intestinal permeability.  This causes inflamation which in turn causes problems with my adrenals (too high early morning cortisol).  For that, I am taking phosphatidylserine (lowers cortisol) and pregnenolone (the adrenal glands 'mother hormone').  I am planning to ask my GP next week to prescribe Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN), which lowers antibodies (I have Hashimotos.  You can get pregnenolone from Biovea in the US without a prescription.

    If you want to contact my NZ source of NDT (Porcine thyroid), you can contact the compounding pharmacy on-line:  Pharmaceutical Compounding New Zealand Ltd (PCNZ).  I don't know if they ship overseas and they would probably require a prescription.  The NZ dollar is lower value than the US dollar, so it may be cheaper.

  • mongolia1,

    It will absolutely NOT be identical to Armour Thyroid.

    Armour Thyroid is formulated to be made into tablets in a factory producing vast numbers of such tablets. The excipients of it are:

    Calcium Stearate, Dextrose, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Sodium Starch Glycolate, Opadry white.

    Although there may be a small amount of lactose used as a diluent in the desiccated thyroid powder used to make Armour (and that seems uncertain), none is added "as a filler".

    This sort of statement was very common during the great Armour Thyroid shortage with pharmacists up and down the USA claiming pretty much the same. Even if it has the same amount of desiccated thyroid and even the same amounts of T4 and T3, it cannot be described as "identical".

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