Low T3 in elderly cannot get prescription for T3

My 91 year old mother had a thyroid test at end of October 2015 showing low T3 below range..... serum free T4 level 16.2 (12-22), serum free T3 2.6 (3.1-6.8) and serum TSH 2.25 (0.3-4.2).

I showed the results to Dr P when I visited for my own appointment and he said that she should be prescribed additional T3 to her 100mcg levothyroxine. I wrote a letter to her doctor and couldn't get an appointment before Christmas. I then spoke to another doctor who said that it would have to go to her original doctor. I finally spoke to her original doctor and she now has to see an endocrinologist, a letter will be sent to the endo, then a letter back, then maybe an appointment. The trouble is my Mum is getting more and more fatigued and her brain fog is increasing, and today I found her in bed and she wouldn't get up, she said she felt it was the middle of the night and went back to sleep. I also noticed that she had sleep apnea, she stopped breathing for a while then a big gasp. I feel as though I am banging my head against a brick wall with these doctors and they just won't listen and drag their heals passing it onto others. I myself have gone onto NDT 6 weeks ago getting Thiroyd from Thailand myself, I feel so much better, more energy, not falling asleep during the afternoon. Has anyone got any ideas, I believe I can only get T3 on prescription here in the UK. Mum has been on levothyroxine for at least 25 years now, she has aches and pains, muscle weakness, brain fog. Although she was diagnosed with dementia 3 months ago it feels as though she has been written off. She can remember things from years ago but her short term memory is bad and is getting confused now. I am at my wits end. Her B12 in June 2015 was 1325 (197-866), Mum takes vit D 5000iu every other day and has been for years along with a good multi vitamin, selenium, etc. I don't know what to do now, its a shame Dr P can't issue prescriptions, or does anyone know an endo in the south of England, I would gladly pay to see an endo who would prescribe T3. I am even considering the NDT, it worked for me multidosing but the problem lies in Mum remembering to take it. x

6 Replies

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  • Dementia? They have actually diagnosed your mother with dementia and ignored her very low T3? I am speachless - they let people suffer unnecessarily. It's a good job you can fight her corner.

    Here is a link:-

    sharpagain.org/causes-of-al...

    and excerpt:-

    Thyroid and other hormonal imbalances. Many people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or dementia simply have low levels of T3 thyroid hormone. However, standard thyroid tests completely miss T3 levels, and Synthroid (T4) doesn’t help. It is estimated that 10 to 15% of all nursing home residents may be there because of low T3.

    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/228...

  • This is what Dr P said, he said it was an abomination! I gave them her test results with his writing on it giving the dosage that was required and I am still not having any luck. Its an utter disgrace, I have even said I would pay for the T3 on a named patient basis but still I have got nowhere. I have already refused her statins and they wanted to give her blood pressure drugs and omeprazole which I pointed out shouldn't be given with Clopidogrel. She is now off all drugs and I keep her blood pressure under control with supplements, she sleeps on a grounding mat to stop the blood from clumping, serrapeptase enzymes to stop clots forming, nattokinase for the blood thinning etc etc. I give her a good pro and prebiotics and all the supplements that help with memory, but its this T3 that is causing the problems. The doctors don't seem to want to take responsibility although it could be the cause of her dementia as your links demonstrate. Thanks for those, more evidence to show them!

  • Dramlouie, you can buy T3 online without prescription but someone will have to quarter the tablets and make sure your mother takes the right dose.

  • Will do, used the pill cutter before. Thanks x

  • It's shocking really that you cannot get the care we need. A good job your Mother has you to fight in her corner. I'm going to post the link below on the main forum too:

    pulsetoday.co.uk/your-pract...

  • Hi Dramlouie.

    So sorry to hear of your poorly Mum, we had a similar story a while back and this is how we sorted it and a good job we did.

    My elderly Mum was also in a brain fog, tired and lifeless, wanted to be out of this world as not worth living she said. Doctor said NO it is not her thyroid levels and eagerly tested both b12 vit D etc. (and reluctantly the Thyroid bloods I asked for)

    I am sure Doctor was hoping to get the £55 incentive payment for finding new Dementia Patients.

    She was already taking good doses of B12's and vit D, so I knew those bloods were OK, though still worth getting them tested. Her thyroid bloods came back as not as good as before, I know where her thyroid levels best lie as Mum's level's are on the same as my own TSH/FT4, yet she was on a lot less Levothyroxine than what I had previously been on and weighed a lot more than myself, so we supplemented her with a top up of NDT, I had to hand, what a difference it made to her, she came back to life again. Doctors do not realize we all need our different thyroid levels that we feel better on.

    It is not one size fits all.

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