Armour thyroid ingredients: Hi can anyone help... - Thyroid UK

Thyroid UK

118,495 members137,407 posts

Armour thyroid ingredients

Millie103538 profile image

Hi can anyone help, just received my first Armour thyroid prescription (private) I'm confused at the ingredients

Levothyroxine (T4) and Liothyronine (T3)

Am I missing something? I understood Levothyroxine to be the synthetic form of Thyroxine (I am unable to take Levothyroxine)

I understood Armour thyroid to be Natural Dessicated Thyroid.

3 Replies
helvella profile image

The wording I see is this:

DESCRIPTION Armour® Thyroid (thyroid tablets, USP)* for oral use is a natural preparation derived from porcine thyroid glands and has a strong, characteristic odor. (T3 liothyronine is approximately four times as potent as T4 levothyroxine on a microgram for microgram basis.) They provide 38 mcg levothyroxine (T4) and 9 mcg liothyronine (T3) per grain of thyroid. The inactive ingredients are calcium stearate, dextrose, microcrystalline cellulose, sodium starch glycolate and opadry white

I think this is poor wording but not intended to confuse.

Levothyroxine is the L- form of thyroxine. This is the form produced in our bodies and I see no great issue with calling it levothyroxine. The synthetic form is the sodium salt - levothyroxine sodium.

Liothyronine was conventionally only used for T3 as a medicine. But by analogy with the word levothyroxine, I don't think there is a major issue. Just a slight jarring of expectations.

Most people happily refer to T4 and T3 whether they were produced in our own thyroids, an animal or a factory. Context (usually) makes it clear which is meant.

I think someone thought that just referring to the shortforms T4 and T3 would be insufficiently clear so used words as well.

The words "a natural preparation derived from porcine thyroid glands " make it extremely clear it is porcine origin hence is a Natural Desiccated Thyroid.

Yes, I noticed that too so I called Forrest Labs! I didn't really mind that they added a bit of Levothyroxine but I asked them if the rest of it was really from pig thyroid and they said, "Yes". I imagined that they needed to put a bit of T4 in it to get to the right human ratios - I don't know. I left it at that, since I feel great on it anyway. Hell, I briefly felt great for a while on the right dose of Levo but my (stupid) endo said I could not stay on that dose (150mcg) because it made my TSH too low. That was before I wised up. If I wasn't allowed to take the right dose of Levo then that was not the drug for me and I started reading and my studies lead me to Armour.

Millie103538 profile image
Millie103538 in reply to LAHs

Thank you for your reply @LAHs, I still think the labelling is misleading but I am confident Armour does not contain the synthetic version of Levothyroxine. It certainly has been a journey to get to this stage, been on thyroid s for 2 years and felt good.

Been on Armour for a week, so early days.

You may also like...