Difficulty obtaining Mercury pharma thyroid medication

I am having great difficulty obtaining this brand of Levothyroxine locally. When my doctor's pharmacy changed me to Actavis 2 years ago I came out in a rash up my legs, so they changed me back to mercury pharma brand. Then they had difficulty obtaining it so I switched to a pharmacy nearby about a year ago. Now they have difficulty obtaining it also.

Anybody got any ideas why this happens and what I can do? I live in a village so obviously it is very inconvenient to have to schlep into the nearest town but I will do if necessary, however I am concerned that this issue has arisen because of a problem with mercury pharma. Have they stopped making this medication? Am I going to have the same problem down the line if I start to go into a large Boots branch in my nearest town?

Anyone else having the same problem?

16 Replies

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  • Like you, I can only tolerate Mercury Pharma.

    Boots don't stock it, they only hold their own brand.(alumus)

    Ask your pharmacist to ring around for Mercury Pharma from his distribution centres.

    Or ring around a few local independent pharmacies to see if they have it.

    I wonder if there are any online prescription services, where you can stipulate the brand? Anyone know?

  • Mercury Pharma no longer exists under that name. They are now owned by Concordia International - except I think AMCo bought them first, then Concordia bought AMCo.

    If you search the emc for levothyroxine :

    medicines.org.uk/emc/

    it quotes the manufacturer as being "Concordia International formerly AMCo" for some of the available levothyroxine.

    What I find astonishing is that Concordia don't have an entry on Wikipedia. :O

  • Ripe for editing ;-) ...

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conco...

  • Oh wow! *Blushes* My searching ability completely deserted me last night. My only excuse is it was very late. :P :D

  • Mercury are owned by Concordia but they market under the AMCo name. Eltroxin and AMCo generic levothyroxine are identical. Currently Eltroxin is marginally cheaper than the generic so ask your doctor to specify Eltroxin. If you then find any difficulties obtaining it make a complaint to the MHRA. Any pharmacy can get Eltroxin as it is a branded drug.

  • I only use Mercury Pharma and so far have not had any issues getting it, years ago I also tried another brand and it gave me very bad side effects. I spoke to the dispensary at my old Drs surgery. They got my prescription changed to 25 mg x 2 at that time. It's now x 5. So I get 5 boxes a month of 25 mg. it's my understanding only Mercury Pharma do 25 mg, so if you get your prescription changed you should be ok. I've got my prescription from Boots and Morrisons with no issues other than eye drops which they have to order in.

    I hope it helps

  • Unless things have recently changed, mercury pharma does all the strengths, 25,50 and 100 . When I was on it, it was always a pain to get hold of and I have lots of chemists in town. Boots only do actavis but under another name, almus, but it's merely actavis in another box really.

  • What is the difference between the brands that has an effect on us? Surely they should be the same or how could they be called thyroxine. My chemist changes brand all the time. Sometimes I get 100mcg of one brand and 50mcg in another manufacturers box in the same prescription. Is that bad?

  • It's the fillers that make the difference. The active ingredient should, theoretically, be absolutely identical between the different brands.

  • The difference is the fillers ,stabilisers etc that are added to the hormone.These can affect some people.

    Yesterday someone posted that a recent change to Mercury had brought improvement so it is still available.

    Concordia has rapaciously put up the price of T3 so CCGs are now stopping supply.

  • Yes, I have the same problem. Always did better on Goldshield but then it became mercury and I still did better if I was lucky enough to get it. Proved by blood tests that I did less well on Activis and even less well on Wockhardt. A well known chemist said they couldn't always get it so I changed to a well known supermarket and they turned out to be the same so I have now changed to the pharmacy attached to my doctors surgery and this time I picked up my prescription I had Mercury for all my meds. 50mcg levo 25mcg levo and T3 although I believe they are the only company that make T3 in the UK. I just hope they don't change this now it's been taken over.

  • I was getting Mercury 25 mcg at the beginning of the year, from Boots, with the rest Almus. Then I changed to an independent pharmacy, and the whole prescription was Mercury.

  • I have to take 75 mcg / 100 mcg thyroxine on alternate days. I take Mercury pharma brand. The trouble is I was informed that they don't do 100s so I take 3 X 25s one day and 2 X 50s the next. Mercury pharma don't provide the 50s in a blister pack but BOOTs pharmacy order them in in a pack of 1000 and dispense them in a brown pill bottle for me. Hope this helps?

    BB

  • MercuryPharma most certainly do produce 25, 50 and 100 microgram tablets - and all are available in blister packs. Blister packages are almost universal for levothyroxine tablets in the UK - and often elsewhere.

    Check the documents available here:

    medicines.org.uk/emc/search...

    Pharmacies are expected to dispense in blister packs, if available. And they are.

  • Thanks for all of the responses everyone. My local village Numark pharmacy, who had said they had great difficulty in getting 100's and couldn't get 25's at all, managed to ring round and get hold of both the 25's and 100's for me. So fingers crossed I may be alright for a while.

  • I was told on Friday that Mercury pharma brand was being discontinued and the new owners are now only producing their new formulation under the brand Teva. The new tablets are twice the size and have different packing ingredients including a sugar which I am pretty sure won't work for me.

    Does anyone have any other info, and is Eltroxin still available as that was the same formulation as Mercury Pharma - who is making that does anyone know? Thx Kate

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