Thyroid UK
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Chest pains on Levothyroxine

Hi. I was diagnosed with an under active thyroid two years ago and put on Levothyroxine 50mg. After a while I developed chest pains and my Dr. Didn't associate it with my Meds. I decided after two yrs to stop taking my Meds and they said to re test my blood in two months. I'm wondering if long term damage has been done to my heart because I just don't feel right at all. I feel really light and shaky when I walk and pressure in my chest that keeps being passed off as anxiety. I don't believe it is and think something is really wrong. Is it dangerous to just stop taking it? Any help would be appreciated.

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50mcg is often a starter dose. Testing should be done every 6/8 weeks for dose adjustments. Do you have any test results with ranges you could share ? Always ask for copies of results that are legally yours so you can monitor your progres and to help with posting here 😊

Do you know your levels of B12 - Folate - Ferritin - VitD ? If levels are low you can feel very poorly and thyroid hormones will not work well.

I think it is wrong to stop taking Levo - but understand you are feeling poorly. I would re-introduce and read what others say. Taking too little T4 can make you feel unwell.

Are you taking any other medication ?

I'm not a medic - just a Hashimotos girl with a B12 issue 😴

thyroiduk.org

The above link takes you to the main website of this forum. Everything you need to know about thyroid 😊

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My TSH and Everything else is normal apparently and I have to pay for a copy of my results. I will get another blood test done soon and beg my Dr for a free copy of it as I shouldn't have to pay for it. Wouldn't an higher dose cause more problems? I'm hoping to heal my thyroid naturally on a plant based diet and I do have T3 I bought online that I'm thinking about taking but not sure.

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Normal is an opinion - not a result 😊 I believe in the UK you can sign up to see your results on-line. The payment should be to cover the cost of paper and printing. If there is a problem take a notebook and pencil and write them down from the GP's screen. Don 't forget ranges as labs vary.

Not sure how a plant based diet will help to replace a missing hormone. A higher dose should improve matters if your nutrients I mentioned above are optimal.

How do you know you need T3 ? It is also synthetic by the way ! - not plant based 😊

How will you obtain B12 on a plant based diet ?

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I take a b12 supplement and I have watched videos on YouTube of people who have healed their thyroid on a plant based diet and so I'm giving it a try. If you nourish your body with the nutrients it needs it should hopefully correct itself. If this doesn't work I'll reconsider my options. The leaflet and other sources of info as suggested to stop taking thyroxine if you get chest pains, so I did, just not straight away.

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There are almost 64,000 members of this very active Forum. Please may I suggest you start a new post asking if anyone has healed their thyroid with a plant based diet.

I have been a member here for almost six years snd have not read anything about plants healing a thyroid. Of course diet is important but you still need your medication. You don't want a return of your illness in 2015 .....

How much B12 are you taking ? and which brand ? You also need Folic Acid/Folate as B12 & Folate work together in the body. So a good B Complex would take care of that.

Don't forget the other tests that will help you to feel better.

Do you have Hashimotos ?

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I take B-Right B complex with folate etc in it, vit d and k2, vegan omega 3 and chelated iron.

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articl...

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Low iron/anaemia can cause heart issues. What were your levels before supplementing ? How much are you taking ? VitC with the iron will help absorption.

Do you have Hashimotos ? - auto-immune Thyroid ?

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If you are in the U.K. you are entitled to copies of your own blood test results. Only a nominal printing charge - eg £1 is acceptable.

Sounds like you were very under medicated. As Marz says, 50mcgs is a starter dose, that should be retested after 6-8 weeks and increased until TSH is around 1

Now you have stopped taking entirely, chemical driven "anxiety" is a typical symptom of being hypothyroid. The longer you are off the Levo the worse you are likely to feel

Get new thyroid blood test ASAP and ask that thyroid antibodies are tested too

You can not heal a thyroid problem naturally.

If you have high thyroid antibodies, this is autoimmune thyroid disease also called Hashimoto's. You MIGHT reduce symptoms by changing to strictly gluten free diet. But most usually we need to be gluten free and take Levo

Extremely common to have very low vitamin levels- testing vitamin D, folate, ferritin and B12 essential

Always get actual results and ranges for all blood test results

All thyroid tests should be done as early as possible in morning and fasting.

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Without test results it is impossible to advise.I can only say that on starting Levo I developed pains in my chest and arm when walking up steep hills.This is not uncommon and is referred to by a Dr. in an early book on thyroid problems.The answer was to prescribe beta blockers of which I have had to keep increasing the dose to manage.

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That sounds more like angina to me. Not that I'm qualified to give an opinion. But Treepie that sounds like heart disease and hopefully your GP has referred you to cardiology.

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bardak,yes checked ,wrong side for angina ,apparently I have irregular veins ,whatever they are!

Such pains were mentioned in the GP's book as easily treated with beta blockers .

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I thought beta blockers inhibit the thyroid function… That's why I have stopped taking my propranolol

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That is true of propranalol.I am taking Bisoprolol fumarate.I have not read anything about it inhibiting levo.But I had to increase from 1.25 -5 mg over last year and blood tests showed TSH had increased and FT4 and FT3 went below half way.An increase of levo from 125mcg to 150 mcg has been needed to reduce TSH and get FT3 and FT4 over half way.I think I could do with another 25mcg but the GP yesterday would not play. Even so I am feeling better than last year.

Rather then stopping the beta blockers perhaps you should use blood test results to demonstrate their effect and discuss with GP an increase in levo if needed.

The GP who wrote the book on thyroid I was referring to was Joan Gomez. I could not recall the name earlier.

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Thanks... a different brand. I see :-)

My psychiatrist prescribed me propranolol for panic anxiety disorder he has never given me a blood test's, and I am very poor. I am also firing him because even after just since July 17 of making changes and cutting way back on all the psychiatric meds he had me on I am feeling better.

It's a long story but he really is a heartless money hungry soul who cares absolutely nothing about me .

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A different brand but I suspect quadrupling the dose over a year did affect my absorption.

Good that you are feeling better.

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If your doctor insists on charging you for a print-out, take a piece of paper and a pen and slowly get him to dictate the results. Double check everything including the ranges. This will take so long that he will give you a print-out just to get rid of you.

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Lol eeng! That's what I do at the bank when they keep insisting I change my password to something I cannot remember and then after I reset it I cannot log in! I just telephone them and insist that they read out every transaction i have made over the past month so that I can balance my cheque book.

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Hi,

If you have been diagnosed as underactive, then you will always need medication as it would appear your body is not making enough of the hormones that your body needs. As already been noted, a "normal or no further action result" does not mean that you do not need the extra medication. I never get print outs, just ask for the results and ranges and write them in my diary and I always ask to talk to the GP. If getting results from the receptionist, they are only reading from a script and are not medically trained.

How much T3 are you taking and in what form? I am concerned you have replaced the T4 with T3 and if taking the same dose, that is why you might be experiencing chest pains. Remember T3 is three times more powerful than T4. If underactive, you should be taking a higher dose of T4 to a lower dose of T3 but only if you are not converting. please get a second opinion.

As our friends have said, once you have a thyroid problem, it is for life and once on the correct dose, you should lead a relatively normal life. It might be that you are B12 deficient too, so it will not harm getting the folate and ferritin levels checked as well in your blood.

Anxiety can play a big part, I have suffered all my life but I feel that I am on the right doses now as I was born with a partial non working gland. I currently take 200 mcg of thyroxine (T4) and 20 mcg of Lithyronine (T3). However, I was messed around in my 30's and my dose was actually reduced to 75 mcg - I was very very poorly and have suffered poor health for the last 20 plus years, including dramatic weight gain, which ironically I am being blamed for lol. I am now on my original dose, plus the 20 mcg of T3 and losing weight.

Let us know how you get on and take care :)

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I am not currently taking t3 or t4 ATM. I bought the t3 as an alternative to t4 because of the chest pains and thought it might be better for me. I never had any health problems before they put me on thyroxine and it's ruined me. I wish they'd never put me on it. I'm scared an higher dose would cause an heart attack so I don't know what to do anymore.

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So originally then, they told you that you had an underactive, hence the T4 - Is that correct? Sorry, I am just trying to establish the issue of thyroxine?

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I was admitted to a mental ward for two weeks in 2015, they did a blood test and told me I had an underactive thyroid and put me on Levothyroxine. I thought ok I don't even know what a thyroid is and just accepted what they said and it became my medication everyday. I was also put on anti psychotics, so I initially thought the chest pains were side affects from them. I withdrew myself off the anti psychotics as a precaution and introduced meat back into my diet to see if that would help, but no. I then looked into Levothyroxine side effects this year and noticed it says if you experience chest pains on this medication you should stop taking it and see your gp. I saw my gp and explained ide had chest pains for two yrs and she said "but your levels are normal." So I need to get to the bottom of this pain b4 I start thyroxine again. I'm glad your finally on a dose that works for you and what symptoms did you have on a low dose in your 30's?

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It seems strange, that one blood test would say you were underactive and another say it was normal especially on a low dose.

Regarding me and my low dose. Brain fog, sleepiness, swelling, water retention, gynaecological problems, infertility and weight gain. As a consequence from that, I have now oedema to the extent that I have to take a diuretic for life and dressings on my legs due to permanent damage, my feet swell so much with fluid, some days I can't get a shoe on and have to wear prescription shoes at the moment. I have breathing problems and due to the weight gain, I have sleep apnoea but they think I may have had that always but it went undetected as a child.

B12 deficiency, pernicious anaemia and vitamin D deficiency are also at my door. But I think these already run in the family. However, can go hand in hand with thyroid conditions because of the similar symptoms.

Never had any of the above before the dose was reduced except for mild anaemia when pregnant with my first two children and obviously thyroid condition. I did not have a weight problem either, was able to gain and lose weight as everyone else. But I did suffer and still do from anxiety.

At the moment I am going through a grieving process and the anxiety is the worst.

I am determined it won't rule me though.

If I were you, I would have a chat with your GP or at least get a second opinion, you need to compare results and get the ranges especially if the results with your GP are considered normal. Perhaps you haven't got a thyroid condition after all, hence the reason you might be having the chest pains because of it. Definitely ask to see a Consultant if you are not happy.

I would not want anyone to go through what I have been through.

Take care and keep in touch :) x

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More likely to heart issues if under treated

More likely low vitamins stopping Thyroid hormones working

Ask GP to test vitamin D, folate, ferritin and B12

Always get actual results including ranges. If these are too low improving can really help

Low B12 very common when vegetarian

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My thought is that levo speeds up the metabolism and this exposes potential issues with blood flow by the appearance of chest pains hence Dr Joan Gomez said ( in her book) that it was easily resolved by beta blockers.

As some beta blockers inhibit absorption of levo it may be that more levo is needed following further blood tests.

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Jomillwood,

How long is it since you stopped taking Levothyroxine?

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End of July

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Jomillwood,

There will be a negligible amount of Levothyroxine left in your system 6 weeks after stopping it. Have chest pains resolved?

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Not completely but I'll keep you all updated

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Jomillwood,

Perhaps Levothyroxine isn't the cause of the chest pain.

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I have considered that but it wasn't worth risking carrying on with it

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Agree with SlowDragon about the heart issues. You can get heart reactions to under dosing as well as over dosing. My theory is that doctors are aware of the over dose problem and that is why they are always minimizing thyroid meds but they are not aware of how life is if you are under dosed. Slogging and dragging yourself through your day's routines for months if not years can also put a strain on your heart. I think that it is just a matter of how long it takes the heart to react to the wrong dose of thyroid meds, very fast to over dose and slow to under dose. You have to spend a lot of time and energy getting to an exact and correct dose.

Regarding psychiatric medication: you may not have been diagnosed correctly since doctors are very trigger happy to tell you it's all in your head. But for whatever this is worth, patients with true mental illnesses have responded well to T3 only medication - I do not know the mechanism but there are cases in history that you can read about. The brain is a special organ that makes it's own T3 with T4 that it allows to cross the blood brain barrier (BBB). Some say that T3 will not cross the BBB - that's debatable. So, how the T3 gets up there to fix a mental illness is one of life's mysteries so far and beyond my knowledge.

But like many have said above, get your blood test numbers and publish here then we can help more.

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I think the research is more about protection. You have already been diagnosed.

Do you have Hashimotos ?

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Not sure! I asked and she said in most cases it is hashi, so I don't know yet

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I thought beta blockers in Hibbett to thyroid function… That's why I have stopped taking my propranolol

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Me too

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Yep, beta blockers use you TBGs to transport their chemicals to your cells, they compete with your thyroid hormones which also need these TBGs.

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Ohhh.. thanks for info! Good to know 😮👀🤔

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