Thyroid UK
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Mercury Pharma

Can anyone tell me if Mercury has been taken over again? I've searched and can't find anything. I'm at my wits end I can't find it in any pharmacies and my local one that my script usually goes to only have TEVA. I had it for a month and felt so ill so asked for a new prescription from my GP explaining why I want another one. I have a fresh prescription in my hand but everywhere is TEVA. All the chemists are extremely unhelpful and say they can't order it in as it just comes up Levo on the order, they get what they are given, I run out on Thursday and am even contemplating self medicating with NDT. It's not right we can't get the brand we use as my endo says keep with same brand. I've been on Levo for 18 years and this is the better one of them for me. GP and pharmacists are not interested. Should I try and contact Mercury direct? Time is not on my side, got 2 packets of crappy TEVA in bedside drawer which I go not want to have to take.

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Thanks Delicious21 I have just sent them an email, although doubt I'll get a response over bank holiday weekend 😩 Will keep ringing around

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Here is the profile for mercury pharma. pharmiweb.com/resources/com...

If you click on the link to their website it comes up with concordia website.

rather suggests they are linked.

Xx

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Mercury Pharma has been part of Concordia for almost 4 years.

concordiarxinternational.co...

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Self medication might be advisable.

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surely if your gp has maned the brand of levothyroxine you need that is what the chemist has to supply? has your gp actually put on the prescription that you want the mercury pharma one? if not get them to

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No my GP hasn't and won't either, but I'm going to ask for a phone call with him or even speak to my endo

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so you did ask him to prescribe mercury pharma and he refused?

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No I haven't asked him yet, will either drop a letter or ask for a phone call as I can't be doing with trailing round and round everywhere!! Now I know it can be done (reading info on this site)

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I had the same thing last week my local small pharmacy gave me Teva and they had loads of Mercury Pharma in all doses... I got it changed no way was I having another brand after so many times of different ones make sure Brand is on prescription I was told and give them plenty notice to order in the only reason he changed it is because surgery rang him.

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I was sent Teva a couple of months ago for first time. Could not at first work out why felt so odd, couldn't sleep, could not concentrate, felt anxious for no reason, felt twitchy so asked not to receive any more.

This month they sent Mercury for first time and after two weeks feel just same as with Teva. Pharmacist has agreed I can return them and she will swap for regular brand today!

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Wow what a good pharmacist you have!!

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I do appreciate that at this point, time is short. In future, however, if you have problems locally, you can always use an internet pharmacy:

nhs.uk/Service-Search/pharm...

Have to say, I have found most pharmacies will help - including large chains and small local companies.

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Thanks I'm finding a few very unhelpful right now

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There was a supply issue and lloyds can only get it in 25mg so I take 6 a day !! Boots also now have stocks . My gp writes mercury brand but it seems like a lottery

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I raised this issue with my GP practice and it's dispensary this week (the deleterious effect numerous brand changes Actavis, Mercury Pharma and TEVA have had on my health and sadly got precisely nowhere).

Current MHRA guidelines advise patients should be given 3 monthly prescriptions for "patient convenience and continuity of supply."

CCGs over-ride this with their 28 day prescribing rule despite clear MHRA evidence different brands of Levothyroxine can have different effects on patient health.

It wouldn't help your current situation, but I think this issue needs much greater support and attention. Patient health should always be the priority. Why is the tail allowed to wag the dog and Pharma companies allowed to dictate supply?

Also why don't patients with thyroid disorders have an effective lobby to take on this type of issue and help negotiate change???

Thyroid UK and the BTF seem nowhere near as powerful as Diabetes UK and the like, which infuriates me beyond belief!

Good luck tracking down your Mercury Pharma supplies! Could you let us know how you get on?!

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I managed after quite a struggle to get 25mcg tabs of mercury levothyroxine end of last month in my 2mthly script. I previously would have to ring my Pharmacy to tell him days in advance when I put my on-line script in as it was hard to get 25mcg size (which I chose as its simpler to add or reduce in amount taken. I had to have Wockhardt script before because he just could not get them. I out of frustration accepted at first for 2 weeks ok then when they took over all the not so good things got a 100% worse. So I altered size to 50mcg size as cutting 1 tab in half much less stressful than chasing what I want. Eventually I ended up with my "beloved" mercury pharma" six packs of 28. I now will be getting the 50mcg size as I don't expect they will always be there. But they are if you want them I have e-mailed company in the past which is Croydon based & they always maintain they are still being produced. My chemist did suggest Teva (made in Poland once) Keep at it you are the boss of your body-you have to live with it not the invisible "them". Good luck from Scorpio a feisty 5ft female with more years debit than credit Sorry e-mail so long.

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Hi,

I only use Mercury Pharma also, I've not had any issue yet. My prescription is made up of 25 mg tablets, so I currently take 6 tablets a day, e.g. Dose is 150.

Not all brands do the 25's and so far I've only been given Mercury Pharma, but the chemist also knows that's the brand I need. I currently get my needs from Boots.

I hope it helps

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I've just spoken to boots they can help me with 25's and even tho script says 50's and 25's she's willing to double the dose, result

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I'm glad you've got it sorted.

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Unfortunately boots were unable to help as script said 50's they can't just double the dose and give me all 25's. I have found a lloyds that are going to try and order for me Tuesday, got my fingers crossed I've left it with him

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If you don't get anyway Tuesday, talk to your surgery to see if they can issue another prescription in 25mg so you'd take 2 a day for 50 etc. You really won't feel the same on any other brand as even though MP say they are 25mg they are actually 28, so if you take another brand you are not getting the same dose.

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I just checked mine, and all my supposedly lactose-free levo (100, 50, and 25 mcg) is by TEVA. I haven't felt well for the past three months, need to check inserts again.

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I travelled that road 3 years ago and got so angry at being messed around I decided to use NDT. My GP knows about this and is happy to monitor me, though I have to tell her how she needs to read my lab results, and of course, pay for my pills.

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Can you tell me where you order from please? How much etc

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I can get Mercury Pharma at Lloyds pharmacy in East Sussex. My GP states that brand and I can get 100's otherwise I would have to take 8 25's . I always check what they give me before leaving the pharmacy. If they do give me another brand I ask for them to be ordered in . Guess I'm lucky they are quite good pharmacists there.

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Same here. I do much better on Mercury. I don't get on with Wokhardt. I've never been given Teva but I know it was recalled once for not having the right dose of levo in. I had to change pharmacist in order to get it though.

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The original Teva levothyroxine was NOT recalled for not having the right dose in it. One of the other ingredients had been changed which resulted in the tablets not delivering the claimed dose to people taking it. But the tablets themselves had the correct amount in them. The licence for one of their products was withdrawn in 2013 and the product taken off the market.

The new formula Teva is entirely different.

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Oh right. I wonder if that is why some of us do better with a particular brand.

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The reasons for us doing better on one make than another are often unclear. We can speculate, and our speculation might be based on good information, but unless and until it is proved, we really cannot be certain.

Old Teva is one of the few cases where it was indeed proved to be defective product.

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Teva was the brand that failed a dissolution test, so the patient didnt get the correct dose as it wasn't dissolving.

X

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They say everything happens for a reason. I would highly recommend NDT self medicating. I will never return to Levo (I believe it to be pure poison). 6 months on Thiroyd I am symptom free. It is now getting embarrassing everyone telling me how well I look as before the switch I felt I was dying. If we all self medicated and no longer requiring all the other crap ie painkillers, migraine tabs, depression tabs and rash creams etc they sure then would take notice. While sick you are a money making machine for the pharma industry.

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Can you tell me where you order your NDT from please? How much etc

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Hi mtcorr, I realise this post is a year old now but I'm determined to get off levo and would really appreciate your help. I have repeatedly asked my doctor if I can stop taking levo and if I can cure my thyroid with diet. Needless to say, he isn't very helpful. Can you tell me what you take? Are you still off levo? How do you feel now?

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Hi Ceedee81

Sorry im only just seeing your question as im at work.

I have been taking Ndt (Thiroyd) since Nov 16 and I have never looked back.

Unfortunately your Gp will probably know very little about your condition and likely no information on Ndt.

I found all the information I needed on this forum and I studied hard before I self medicated so I would have at least an idea of what I was doing.

I have never felt better. There is so much more to it that just changing your tablets though. Diet, gut health and vitamin optimisation are also key.

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Thanks for your reply. I need to do more research into it but I have always said that I WILL be off thyroxine before I'm 40 (now 36). My diet is pretty good as I'm plant based/vegan and take good vitamin supplements. I was struggling to find someone who had been self medicating for long enough (and stayed well) for me to warrant doing it. But you're proof it is possible ☺

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I feel your pain! Teva is terrible! But my chemist was very helpful and swapped what I had left of it to another brand I get on with and made a note against my name to make sure I don't have Teva again. Hope you get another brand.

JillO

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Looks like I need to find a new pharmacy, so unhelpful

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can I ask if you filled in a yellow card please?

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I did :-)

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When you yellowcarded TEVA did you ask for copy to be sent to your GP?

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Boots advised me to and am going to yes

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Mercury is still available, but like you they tried to foist Teva on to me saying Mercury was out of stock. I persisted because Id not run out of tabs and a couple of days later I got the Mercury. I get sick of being told 'its all the same' when we know its not. They need to gen up on how it is for a thryoid patient and that mix and match with different types of brand isnt recommended. I have run-ins in the past with pharmacists!

The other brands are much cheaper hence the reluctance to issue Mercury.

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Do you have pricing information to support that?

There have been times people have had difficulty getting any make but Mercury Pharma! :-)

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I also had a problem with being switched to Teva recently, so my chemist has made a note that I can not tolerate Teva and prescribe what I have had for years: Actavis and Wockhart brands. Hopefully you can also find a good local chemist and just use that one in future.

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After Concordia took Mercury over, they well and truly took the Mickey with their pricing. Their action with T3 is the reason most CCGs starting withdrawing if from patients. The NHS had an exclusive contract with Mercury for T3 so badly written that despite the price change (increased tenfold) they could not obtain supply from another company.

My guess would be that levo is also overpriced and the pharmacists can't make money on it since the NHS pays a fixed amount. I am sorry to hear that alternative brands aren't working for you.

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Like many, I can only tolerate one brand (Mercury Pharma) - I have similar debacle trying to get some.

I use to get 3 months worth - now less - means trawling around various pharmacies until find helpful one.

Interesting to read Boots now stocking in some branches, they used to only stock their own brand - I shall try there

Suggest you print this article out and highlight the last three paragraphs - then show it to any difficult Pharmacist or GP

endocrine.org/-/media/endos...

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Thanks for link.

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Was Mercury Pharma previously known as Goldshield - anyone know?

I didn't get on with those,they didn't seem to work at all.

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Goldshield got taken over and renamed Mercury Pharma and became part of Amdipharm.

They then got taken over by the Canadian company Concordia International.

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Thanks Helvella! I am on Wockhart, and was thinking about trying another make as I am not as good as I'd like to be.I was going to try Teva, but from everyone's comments it looks like that would make me feel worse.

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We have seen a variety of opinions ranging from awful to excellent. Absolutely typical of how patients feel about levothyroxine products.

Just because one group says they could not stand it does not mean that will necessarily apply to you. We are all different.

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Hi I have had to use Wockhardt for last script I had (made me feel bad) & if you check size its a third of the diameter of Mercury & half the size in depth so I can only assume they save money on fillers - & your digestive system (like mine) once tab digested re-distributes it faster maybe. Any way I see this is a popular generic (cheaper brand that nice (not so nice) wants to promote pharmacies to use wherever they can. I find that Mercury Pharma is the best of the worst to make us feel better (not!) If your body not in control eg the natural processes that tell your body what to do & when how is it supposed to with a fake metabolic placebo.

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Hi, I suppose as Helvella says, one brand might suit one person and not another, it's just a case of finding the best one for you.

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Mercury Pharma took over Goldshield so yes. Then Mercury Pharma was bought by I thought Cinven but some of you think it was Concordia. The owners of Mercury Pharma Vijay and Bikhu Patel now of Waymade were on the front page of the Times July 2016 as they have made a fortune out of selling T3 to the NHS. According to the British Thyroid Association Dec 2016 statement and graphs over a 1000% increase on the price. What a scam!

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That's an interesting post as I am having the same problem. I started a post a few weeks back about my pharmacist struggling to get me MP Levo. This time they were only able to get me 25mcg by getting them from boots up the road.

I've contacted Concordia who confirmed there was no issue with supply and they said it is distributed by Alliance, AAH and AM.

Since my gp gave me separate prescriptions for 25mcg and 50mcg I struggled to get the 50mcg for a couple of weeks. I asked an independent pharmacy and a couple of boots - they have almus 50 and MP 25 and told me they are not able to order any in. The local boots (which happens to be the same one that supplied my other chemist) offered to look for me on Friday and today I collected it but they could not give me blister boxes instead I got a jar of 56 tablets of Eltroxin 50mcg, they had left from dispensing to others before. He said there was no 'issue' and for me to try next time as it may be easier for them.

I'm lost as to what is going on with the supply and who can get hold of strengths other than 25mcg.

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If you hang around supermarket car parks you will see AAH vans in at least Asda, Tesco, and Sainsbury. AAH is part of Celesio which also owns Lloyds.

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As I started reading your post thought it would lead to a suggestion of robbing one😉 On a serious note, I tried lloyds at Sainsbury's a couple of months ago and they had only teva and wockhardt and told me they cannot request anything, they just get what the buyer gets for them. So, similarly to boots with Alliance, even within the same corporate group they cannot order in what the patient wants.

It is surprising there isn't more competition between the manufacturers, it's as if it didn't matter which brand sells?

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I think the competition is very much higher up the chain. What we, as patients, need and want is pretty much irrelevant.

This is a natural consequence of everything - including the UK's ban on advertising prescriotion-only medicines to the public. I feel that is a good ban but overall it has probably reduced the public awareness of products and manufacturers. (I think it would likely be far worse if we saw adverts for Actavis levothyroxine. People might insist they got Acatvis rather than any of the other makes simply because it is the only one they recognise. At the same time shunning Almus - despite it being the same product - and Mercury Phama - even though they might feel better taking that.

No - I don't wait in my car with a cosh. But with the price of Mercury Pharma liothyronine, it would be a lot lighter to hget away with than stealing cash. :-)

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A lady who sits in front of me in the office didn't realise there were different makes of Levo and she has been taking it for c.25 years. She said she noticed the shape of the tablets changed recently - she must have got teva (they are huge in comparison to the others).

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I have mercury pharma Eltroxin levo if that helps

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I can't take teva either and I refuse each time they give it to me. Tell them your allergic. They can order from a different supplier .. you're being lied to. Alternatively go to a different chemist x it's hard to get hold of actavis now but mercury pharma still do supply levo. My chemist has to actually manually put the tablets into a jar as they can't get actavis. I asked to see the original box and they showed me so I know they can do it. Don't be bullied x

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Hi which brand of levo did the chemist put into a jar? Theone you cant tolerate? I am asking because I got a jar too today with no brand name on it.

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I know you asked three months ago, but...

If you post identifying any markings on your tablets, they can readily be identified.

Further always ask for the Patient Information Leaflet every time you get a prescription dispensed.

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