starting T3: Hi everyone, I have just started on... - Thyroid UK

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starting T3

Foggyk profile image

Hi everyone,

I have just started on a trial ofT3 from my thyroid Dr. Has anyone got any tips on taking it? I have been told to take 1/2 a tablet 3 x a day.

I wondered if anyone else has that and how you take it? Thank you

PS I'm also on Thyroxine 75mg which I take first in the morning

Also, my precription is private and £110 for 30 tablets, does this sound expensive?

52 Replies


What is the size dose of tablet? 20mcg?

Don't start taking it all at once. I would take just 5mcg a day for a couple of weeks, take it with your thyroxine. Then, if all is well, add another 5mcg a day by taking a second dose in the afternoon about 7-8 hours after the first dose. Again wait 2-3 weeks, if you feel well add another 5mcg. I'd try that third one added to your morning dose, so 10mcg in the morning and 5mcg in the afternoon. Hold at that for 6 weeks and retest. Then assess.

I pay £1 per 20mcg tablet for Thybon Henning T3 from a private lab in the UK with a private prescription.

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to FancyPants54

I have been given 5mg tablets and been asked to take 1/2 a tablet, 3 x a day.That's what I was wondering if anyone had tips on how to take 1/2 a tablet

FancyPants54 profile image
FancyPants54 in reply to Foggyk

Oh OK. So she has told you to take 2.5mcg 3 times a day? You will need to buy a pill cutter from the chemist or Amazon. Most are around £2. 5mcg tablets cost a lot more than 20mcg tablets. So use these for now, but as soon as your dose gets to something divisible by 20, switch to 20mcg tablets. They can be cut into 4 pieces of 5mcg each and will save you money.

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to FancyPants54

thank you very much

Are you in the UK FancePants54? My Tiramel comes in 25mcg

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to BrynGlas

Yes UK

BrynGlas profile image
BrynGlas in reply to Foggyk

And here I am in Wales, with a GP who says T3 is illegal and has asked me not to attempt to discuss it with him! You couldn't make it up, could you???

Jesus! Of course it's not illegal. It's hard to get and he doesn't want to pay for it. That's all. Ring round other surgeries and ask if they have patients taking T3. If you find one that does go and talk to them to see if it's possible to change surgeries.

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to BrynGlas

Oh dear

serenfach profile image
serenfach in reply to BrynGlas

I am in West Wales, and get T3 from my GP. He has now retired and the surgery has not said anything about the prescription yet...

BrynGlas profile image
BrynGlas in reply to serenfach

Oh dear, I hope you can continue on it serenfach.

I am in the UK. Buying German Thybon Henning 20mcg tablets with a private prescription from Roseway Labs in London. No issue sharing the supplier here because you have to have a private prescription to buy it.

I read an earlier post that you could no longer get that particular manufacturer in UK since BREXIT , sorry for digressing!

Yes we can still get Thybon Henning on private prescription from UK sources.

Where would I get a private prescription and why the hell should we have to go to those lengths?

It is as bad as diabetics having to get a private prescription for insulin, though I do understand that diabetes can kill you faster.

Lowthyroid kills us by degrees and only the symptoms are treated.

You get a private prescription either from an enlightened GP prepared to do it (probably hard to find) or a private doctor of some sort. A private GP or as in my case a private endo. Of course this means you have to pay to be a consulting patient with them. It was the only way for me. NHS not interested as not able to understand my case it seems. I'm not that difficult. But the only GP who might have helped me has been gone from the practice for several years.

Exactly as you say. Why the hell should we have to do this?! It costs real money to do this. It's absolutely not fair and in fact it's almost criminal. People, often women, kill themselves due to the poor treatment for hypothyroidism in this country. It's high time something drastic happened.

I have nearly been there a few times and sometimes I wish I had made a better job of it. If you come up with a plan, count me in, I would love to bring this particular issue to the fore. People I have spoken to have never heard of low thyroid, or hyper thyroidism for that matter. Life gets so very trying at times.

BrynGlas profile image
BrynGlas in reply to Foggyk

Mine are Tiramel 25mcg. Are you in the UK?

I started taking 1/4 of a T3 once daily.

Then increased it by 1/4 of a tablet working up to taking it 3 times a day gradually then increased each dose again by 1/4 of a tablet until now when I take 3 full T3 3 times a day.

It took a while, but I did it without the headaches which I got if I tried to increase too fast.

I'm confused by how you have written your current dose. Are you taking 75mcg a day?

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to FancyPants54

Me? No I'm taking 2.5 mg 3 x a day

FancyPants54 profile image
FancyPants54 in reply to Foggyk

No, I wasn't directing that at you. If you look next to my name in the question above, you will see it say's I'm replying to BrynGlas.

Yes, 3 x Tiramel 25mcg daily as near as I can to every 8 hours

That's a large dose but there are those who need that much. Do you monitor your BP and HR and is all good? Do you feel well on it?

Kandahar profile image
Kandahar in reply to BrynGlas

I’ve been told that my 75mcg a day is high and I have been a bit worried about a heart rate of nearly 100 a minute. If I’m correct in thinking you take 75mcg three times a day, do you have problems with a racing heart?

BrynGlas profile image
BrynGlas in reply to Kandahar

I don't have that problem. Mine is around low 80's unless I am trying to elevate it, for exercise etc. It hasn't been under 80 for some time, but when I was on just Levo 150mcg, I looked on my machine memory funnily enough last night and I was between 60 & 70 I don't usually record my BP or pulse, but there is a memory on my BP monitor which records pulse as well. And if I felt I had a fast pulse it is easy to check that way. My BP is fine too, I am lucky enough to never have had problems with high BP.

fizzybee Could you please tell me the name of the private lab you use. I understand you can't print that on here I am a tech dinosaur how do we pass private messages .

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to fizxybee

I'm not using a lab. I'm seeing a Dr . I can pm you the details

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to Foggyk

75mg thyroxine

I have a private prescription from a private endocrinologist. I fill the prescription at Roseway Labs in London. But you can't get it from there without a prescription.

Hi could you please tell me where you get your tablets from

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to fizxybee

My Dr prescribed them

SlowDragon profile image

What are your most recent TSH, Ft4 and Ft3

Has endocrinologist reduced levothyroxine to 75mcg ...or were you on this dose already

Are all four vitamins at good levels

See from previous posts you are on strictly gluten free diet already

What size tablets were you prescribed

5mcg or 20mcg?

As FancyPants54 to start SLOWLY

Add 5mcg T3 in morning .....see how that goes

After 3-7 days ....add 2nd 5mcg mid to late afternoon

Perhaps hold at that dose and retest in 6-8 weeks

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to SlowDragon

Thanks. Yes I've been reduced to 75mg for a while. My thyroid Dr is fab.I was doing really well then last tests not good so she's trialing me on T3

20 mg 1/2 a tablet 3 x a day.

I'm just wondering how to cut them up etc

FancyPants54 profile image
FancyPants54 in reply to Foggyk

Sorry, above you said your tablets are 5mcg in size. But here you say they are 20mcg? which is it?

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to FancyPants54

oh sorry, definitly 5

SlowDragon profile image
SlowDragonAdministrator in reply to Foggyk

So definitely 5mcg

Which brand?

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to SlowDragon

Definitely 5mg. I don't know re brand. It's from Smart pharmacy and says liothytonine Sodium tablets USP

SlowDragon, Foggyk has been advised to start 2.5mcg taken 3 times a day. Not the 5mcg both you and I assumed.

Would you think this a little too cautious and that it might be better for Foggyk to take 5mcg in the morning from the start and hold for a time (I said 1-2 weeks, you said 1 week) and then introduce the 2.5mcg extra dose in the afternoon and hold for a test in 6-8 weeks? Or would you recommend the 3 split doses of 2.5mcg, starting with just 1 dose for a week? It seems so little, I fear it might just make things worse. I'm still suffering from T3 dropping my T4 too low. I don't want this to happen to FoggyK.

SlowDragon profile image
SlowDragonAdministrator in reply to FancyPants54

Personally I started on 2.5mcg twice day 2.5mcg 3 x day might be good idea

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to SlowDragon

Well, I better do as Dr suggested especially at first. She's a really good Dr, trust her. So far very impressed with her which is great after years of rubbish management

If your dr. Is an endocrinologist - anywhere slightly near london - and if you don’t mind, can you PM me their name? It’s because you said they are ‘good’. Hope all is now working with the info you’ve received on this forum.

BrynGlas profile image
BrynGlas in reply to SlowDragon

Yes, I found I had headaches if I took more than 1/4 of a 25mcg tablet increase at a time SlowDragon

shaws profile image

I take T3 only and I take it once daily when I awake with one full glass of water and wait an hour before I eat. We have to take thyroid hormones on an empty stomach as food can interfere with its uptake.

When having a blood test I have the earliest blood draw and miss the a.m. dose and take it after after test and wait an hour before I eat.

I follow the advice of Dr John Lowe who was an Adviser to Thyroiduk befor his accidental death. He was also a scientist and researcher and doctor and he was also an expert in the use of T3 and he took it himself.

He took his T3 when he awoke during the night to ensure his stomach was empty - with one full glass of water and he stated that one dose of T3 saturated all of the T3 receptor cells and it sent out 'waves' throughout the day. Also we have to take thyroid hormones for life and the easiest way for us the better.

He also stated that the one daily dose saturated all of the T3 receptor cells and it sent out 'waves' throughout the day and the effect could last for between one to three days.

I trialled this myself and took the one dose of T3 on day 1 - took none on day 2 and day 3. It did last for that length of time as Dr L stated.

I only did this once and I take a dose when I awake which gives me normal health with no clinical symptoms. 25mcg of T3 is equal, approx, in its effect to 100mcg of levo.

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to shaws

Thank you. Very interesting.I take my thyroxine when I wake in the night.

shaws profile image
shawsAdministrator in reply to Foggyk

A number of people do so, and one was a researcher/doctor/scientist and adviser to Thyroiduk before his death caused by an accident. He was Dr John Lowe who resigned his licence so that he could still treat patients to the best of his ability, and not be pursued and his licence removed like a few of our doctors/GPs in the UK.

One was Dr Skinner (found to be doing nothing wrong by the GMC) and another Dr Peatfield (I am sure there were/are others) both of whom were pursued as if they were criminals as they 'did as they were taught as students' and would prescribe what relieved the patient's symptoms.

I started taking natural desiccated thyroid powder which has some T3 by taking levothyroxine one day and the NDT the next adding more days of NDT until eventually I was only taking NDT. I always take it in the morning before any food or drinks. Not sure about T3 on it’s own. Different absorption I’ve heard. Yes that sounds expensive. I got 30 tablets for £57 which included the special delivery. That’s of Armour by the way. Well done finding a doctor to prescribe T3. Hope it helps

I went it alone.

I had to source and buy my own Tiramel and be my own GP too.

At first I just took 1/4 of a 25mcg tablet and increased them gradually over a year. Taking them as near as possible to a dose every 8 hours in an attempt to keep a level dose of T3 in my bloodstream.

I usually take my first dose of T3 and Levo at around 4am. I took a page out of Patrick Holford's book there.

If that doesn't work, ie if I have overslept - like today!- I skip one dose of T3 for that day only.

Don't be in a hurry to increase the dose. When I began, I got pounding headaches if I took too much, too fast, but that might be just me personally. I don't know whether everyone would be the same.

Now I am taking 3 full tablets three times daily and beginning to decrease my Levo too.

Don't be swayed by the fact that I am taking so much T3 myself at the moment though. If you have a doctor who is allowing you to take a trial, I would be guided by him/her. Mine thinks T3 is illegal in the UK and will not discuss it with me at all.

I take a lot of supplements too, have you had tests for vitamins etc? I think that they are very important and I would never stop any of them again.

I am very happy to say that I am gradually getting there, my hair is growing back, I feel better, - no hot flushes. Though I am 69 very soon and long since got over menopause, I was still getting hot flushes day and night. Those have stopped.

My big gripe is weight, that is still not moving yet.

I hope that will follow, fingers crossed. However my weight is stable, I never was able to guess what I weighed each morning and I still can't, except that I am free of the daily weigh in now. And go by what size clothes I can wear today rather than my scales. It is a bit scary, but I am feeling so much better. But still a way to go I think.

I have always had to have a selection of different sized jeans to choose from in the house!!!

Good luck with your trial.

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to BrynGlas

Thanks and good luck to you too

I started with 2.5mcg of T3 / liothyronine from The International Pharmacy in US and for 100 tablets it was over £100; I only used 8.50 mcg in first part of the day and 30 mg NDT ( NP at the time) around 2pm....Good LUck :)

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to Valeriu

Thank you

I take 112mcg of T4 in the morning, together with 10mcg of T3. At bedtime, I take 5mcg of T3. After a bit of trial and error (I have Hashimoto's thyroiditis, diagnosed in 2009 so I've been at this for a while), that seems to be what works for me. I've found that taking some T3 at bedtime helps me to wake up in the morning. I've also noticed that my need for T3 varies a bit depending on my activity level. If I'm inactive for a prolonged period of time (months), I start noticing occasional episodes of rapid heart beat for no reason. When that happens, I skip one or two of the daily doses of the T3 until my heart rate stays normal, then generally stay at the 5mcg either once or twice daily. Weeks later, especially if my activity level rises again, I might start feeling sluggish and exercise intolerant on that dose (as in, sleep most of the next day after a particularly active day), and raise it back up to my normal dose.

Tweaking the dosage like that is not necessarily something I would recommend to others. If you're having symptoms you should report them to your doctor, who can check you out with physical exam and/or lab tests to determine whether/how much to adjust the dose. Thyroid hormones have a "narrow therapeutic window" - which means that the difference between a therapeutic dose and an overdose is small.

I just read FancyPants54's answer, and I agree with it. That was basically how I got to the dosage level that I'm at now, except the initial dosage increases were over a longer period of time and in conjunction with follow-up with my endocrinologist.

I'm in the US, so prices are not going to be comparable. T3 is a lot more expensive than T4 here, though.

Foggyk profile image
Foggyk in reply to rprastein

Thank you

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