Thyroid UK

Newly Diagnosed

I've just been diagnosed with hypothyroid and am about to start on Levothyroxin (it's all new to me, I may get the names wrong!) At the same time my cholesterol was 8, I've had symptoms for around a year: tiredness, depression etc but put it down to my age and the start of the menopause! I've read that it can lead to higher levels of cholesterol, but as I was diagnosed after a routine health check I am now worried it's further on than I thought and I've ignored my symptoms. Will Levothyroxin deal with the cholesterol problem? My diet is good and I'm not particularly overweight.

3 Replies

Yes, high cholesterol is a hypo symptom. And, it will reduce as your FT3 level rises. But, even if that doesn't happen immediately, it's not a problem. High cholesterol is not a problem. It is an essential nutrient, has little to do with your diet, and doesn't cause heart attacks or strokes. :)



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Welcome to the forum, Mandymoo10.

The goal of Levothyroxine is to restore the patient to euthyroid status. For most patients that will be when TSH is 1.0 or lower with FT4 in the upper range. FT4 needs to be in the upper range in order that sufficient T3 is converted. Read Treatment Options in

For maximum absorption Levothyroxine should be taken with water 1 hour before, or 2 hours after, food and drink, 2 hours away from other medication and supplements, and 4 hours away from calcium, iron, vitamin D supplements and oestrogen.

It takes 7-10 days for Levothyroxine to be absorbed before it starts working and it will take up to six weeks to feel the full impact of the dose. Symptoms may lag behind good biochemistry by several months.

You should have a follow up thyroid test 6-8 weeks after starting Levothyroxine. Arrange an early morning and fasting (water only) blood draw when TSH is highest, and take Levothyroxine after your blood draw.


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