Connection Between Hypothyroidism and High Cholesterol?

Although I have a good diet, and am not overweight, without meds my cholesterol is high. One GP tells me there is no connection between an underactive thyroid and high cholesterol, another says there is.

Since April of this year I have been on Atorvastatin, until I read the leaflet which tells me not to take it if I take levothyroxine, which I am (100mg daily). Does anybody know what's going on and what to do?

Bill

67 Replies

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  • Hi there

    Yes GPs used to know the connection (now sadly views differ), a lot of folks report it lowering when on the right dose of Thryoid medication - try the search box (top right) or look at Tags for more information. Here's a previous post....

    thyroiduk.healthunlocked.co...

    Do you feel statins are helping? Have you had your Vitamin D levels tested?

    Jane :D

  • Yes, just had a pretty complete blood test (except the doc forgot cholesterol!):

    Serum Vitamin D: 41 nmol/L (Low so I'm taking 400 mg every other day)

    Serum folate is a bit low; 3.0 ug/L (iron deficiency, so even more broccoli)

    TSH: 10.93 mIU/L

    Serum free T4 Level: 16.1 pmol/L

    Doc says tsh a bit high so I've added 25mg to my daily 100mg.

    Stopped the statins a couple of months ago (which is why the blood test).

    Everything else seems to be ok.

    B

  • I stopped taking them a few weeks ago as the manufacturers state quite clearly that if I'm taking thyroxine I shouldn't use Atorvastatin (though they don't say why). I'm trying to find out if there's an alternative aside from Simavastatin. Checked your ref and I don't eat refined sugar or red meat, or fried food. I have a pretty good diet, fish, ree range chicken, lots of veggies, ginger, garlic, rice and fruit. This is why I wanted know if there was a connection between the thyroid condition and high cholesterol.

    Possibly this is the reason?

    Combination of atorvastatin and levothyroxine replacement therapy in patients with metabolic syndrome and subclinical hypothyroidism causes increase in adiponectin levels and reduction in insulin resistance

    Several studies have shown that presence of a metabolic syndrome (MS) and subclinical hypothyroidism (SH) repeatedly strengthens processes of for­mation of atherosclerosis of a vascular wall. At the same time, additional anti-inflammatory effects on formation of atherosclerotic process at patients with MS and subclinical hypothyroidism are possessed by statin therapies with levothyroxine replacement therapy (LRT). Potentiating synthesis of adiponectin is one of possible anti-atherogenic effects.

    See the full article here: cardiovalens.com/news/newsd...

    Bill

  • High cholesterol is a symptom of hypothyroidism and used to be one of the diagnosis before TSH alone became the diagostic tool. GP's are unaware of this and that is why they prescribe statins, etc. Your Cholestorol will come down when you get up to your optimum meds - which means that all symptoms go. Therefore GP should increase gradually till you feel well - not adjust doses according to the TSH level. If you still have symptoms they should add some T3 to a reduced T4.

  • I was pressured to take statins about 15 yrs ago or more - but I didn't.

    Since then, I've heard all sorts. I know of a woman who's been on it since around then, and now has chronic liver problems, muscle problems and more.

    It's big business for the pharmaceutical firms. That's why every year or two, they drop the age of those who take it, and they drop the cholesterol ref ranges - because they can then recommend that millions more people take statins which, in turn, makes them sqillions of dollars and pounds.

    Why don't you watch The Oiling of America on Youtube?

  • Interesting. Thanks for this.

  • Sooooo true it should be a crime!

  • Well, I should add that last April I had a heart attack and had to two stents implanted. Frankly, aside from feeling cold, I didn't even know that I had an underactive thyroid until a 'chance' blood test revealed that I did. I'm not overweight (5'-10" 64 kilos). But if the doctors can't agree on things how the hell are we supposed to deal with it?

  • PS: Nope, I've not had my Vit D levels tested.

  • Bill

    a couple more interesting links

    cholesterol-and-health.com/...

    private NHS lab test (if GP won't do it)

    vitamindtest.org.uk/

    Another interesting one

    sott.net/article/242516-Hea...

    J :D

  • Thanks, I'll see if I can get my gp to sign off on one. If not perhaps I'll lash out the 25 quid.

    Bill

  • Sorry Bill, I should have started at the beginning

    We are not medically qualified here as it's a support group of TUK

    here's the main site thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/index....

    We ask that folks post their blood results so others can comment to help, and also recommend getting vitamins and minerals tested to eliminate deficiencies (as these tend to be low in hypothyroid sufferers) i.e. Vit D, and irons folate, ferratin and B12 for starters. (unfortunately GPs don't tend to test some of these - despite the Chief medical officers for Scotland, England etc recommending 'at risk' groups are tested for Vit D).

    I think you're looking for hard evidence which is tricky as we can't go against docs advice now can we? like butter isn't bad for you? :D

    Hopefully others will chip in with a pubmed article or similar to help.

    I can't seem to find the one about high Cholesterol being a classic Thyroid sign, but there is more than one!

    Best wishes Jane :D

  • Yeah, I've been there and I'm not impressed. It seems to be more a fundraising outfit than anything else.

    I've done a fair bit of research on the subject and it would seem that the thyroid is so central to the body's functioning that it affects pretty much everything depending on the individual, which may explain why it's so difficult to get answers for a specific situation.

    I for example, only discovered I had an under-active thyroid by accident. I had no symptoms that were clearly identifiable but once I was on thyroxine my health deteriorated rapidly! I felt like shit for three years! It was if my body had been underactive for so long that it couldn't adjust to the 'correct' hormone levels (perhaps since 2002).

    Worse, once you're on the hormone, you're stuck with it! Coming off it makes everything worse! Aside from the blood test results, I'm still not convinced I'm hypothyroid.

  • er sorry Bill - if you ARE hypothyroid then you probably are (trying to be diplomatic but honest here) on it for life - do NHS give free prescriptions for life for no reason?

    However, there are alternatives to Levo 'tho if it doesn't suit - have a good read.

    I should really say that "this site is brought to you courtesy of Thyroid UK" - in good old fashioned informative style. J :D

  • wbowles wrote:

    Yeah, I've been there and I'm not impressed. It seems to be more a fundraising outfit than anything else.

    Perhaps when you wrote that, you were not aware that the website you were given a link to, is that of the charity Thyroid UK, which is the charity responsible for setting up this forum.

    Thyroid UK is a very small organisation that relies heavily on people like myself who freely give many hours of time and skills to help fellow thyroid patients.

    Unfortunately, whilst we individuals work on a purely voluntary basis, we do have to rely on big commercial businesses to enable us to do this voluntary work. So we still have to pay the same bills as any business does, for the technology, software, website hosting, telephone and internet provision etc etc. We really would much prefer not to have to do it, believe me, but fundraising is our only means of obtaining the money to pay these bills.

  • No I wasn't, I thought this forum was independent of Thyroid UK.

  • I think this says it all:

    "Simply stated, without inflammation being present in the body, there is no way that cholesterol would accumulate in the wall of the blood vessel and cause heart disease and strokes. Without inflammation, cholesterol would move freely throughout the body as nature intended. It is inflammation that causes cholesterol to become trapped" -- Dr. Dwight Lundell

  • I was on 150msg Levothyroxine for 24 years (about) after a total thyroidectomy.

    Age 60, wanted to continue working at a job I loved, had a health check for insurance purposes, Clean bill of health, no heart disease, cholesterol 4.7

    .

    Moved home 6 months later to be near my son 130 miles away so had to leave job. New doctor. Told me TSH test showed I was over-medicated so changed Levo to 100mcg.

    Age 61, at least 6 TIAs, Cholesterol 9.7.

    Doctor denies any possible connection and puts me on Atorvastatin which did not do much so changed to Simvastatin. A year later my cholesterol was 6.7 but I was bedridden. Stopped statins after reading that it can cause Rhabdomyolysis, Cholesterol back to 9.7.

    Age 67 I am now on Clopidogrel which seems to have stopped the TIAs but still have cholesterol 9.7, although now the doctor tells me that most of the cholesterol is 'good' cholesterol!

    Recently after gradually becoming sicker and sicker (including an enlarged heart!!!!) I have finally persuaded the doc to put the Levo back to original dose. That was only a month ago so it's early days but I am detecting hopeful little signs.

    SUMMARY: My experience seems to bear out this statement by Dr Lundell, that the cholesterol if it is moving freely does not harm you.

    ALSO: It seems pretty obvious that reducing my Thyroxine is the cause of my astronomically high cholesterol, (soon, I hope, to be proven) which answers your original question.

    AND: Taking Statins is disastrous if you have an under-active thyroid.

  • Well if nothing else, this seems to confirm the idea that there is a direct connection between cholesterol and an under-active thyroid. I wait to see the results.

    B

  • This now has me worried. Last month my cholesterol went up to 8. It had been 4 at the last visit. I was on 100 Levothyroxine. The problem is that for 5 days prior to my test I stopped Atorvastatin 20 mg, just to see if it really works with me. Well....................I hadn't told my doctor. He was worried enough to go back to 40 mgm of statins,especially because of my left carotid artery being blocked 50%. So he increased Levo to 125 and statins to 40. I had my 6th B12 injection 2 weeks ago and am taking methylcobalamin 5ooo sublingually. I was afraid to take the 40 statins and only took 20 as before. I will discuss everything with doctor in one months time. I have told him all along that my cholesterol will normalise when my thyroid has reached optimal treatment.

  • Go onto the website of Dr Malcolm Kendrick - who wrote the Great Cholesterol Con. Am sure his blogs/esssays will reassure you....

  • Thank you Marz.

  • You might find a recent post of some interest. More or less, raised TSH can in itself raise cholesterol levels:

    healthunlocked.com/thyroidu...

  • Thank you Helvella. I have had a bad few days with serious muscle spasms, in my thighs,all over my back and my arms. Have decided no more statins.

  • I read that the Cholesterol test should include triglycerides, which are more important than a total cholesterol level. Two months ago I started a way of life which is simiiar to Paleo.

    Check on face book 'The Big Banting Breakfast Debate'

    It is low carb high fat (good fats). LCHF.

    I have lost 11 Kg in 7 weeks and many cm.

    I am feeling better, with much more energy, as inflammation has reduced because I am not feeding it sugars.

    Apparently with the help of this diet, triglcerides reduce.

    Trigs are the dangerous part of Cholesterol that doctors don't mention.

    I am looking forward to seeing my blood results in a months time.

  • Most cholesterol is produced by your liver, it doesn't come from what you eat. High cholesterol means there's something going wrong in the body. And it is a symptom of hypothyroidsim.

    But apart from that, cholesterol is not the enemy, it does not cause heart attacks. It is an essential element that the body needs to make sex hormones, etc. Low cholesterol means low testosterone, and believe me, that is no fun! My cholesterol is too low, so I eat tons of cream, butter, eggs, avacados, etc, but it doesn't go up. I'm wondering if you can get it in pill form!

    On the other hand, statins are dangerous and nobody should take them! My friend was given statins by his doctor - not because he had high cholesterol, but just 'in case'!!! He has lost his sex drive and is now diabetic. Thank you, Big Pharma!

    Grey

  • Greygoose: I never stated that it comes from what you eat but does diet alter the nature of the cholesterol from 'good' to bad'? That's the issue.

    I think the piece on DR Mercola's website is the sanest thing I've read on the subject:

    articles.mercola.com/sites/...

  • Bill, you said you have high cholesterol 'although I have a good diet', which sort of suggests that you do think it comes from what you eat. Sorry if I jumped to conclusions. As to 'good' or 'bad', I can't help feeling that this is a red herring laid down by those that sell the pills. Call me paranoid but... paranoia IS a hypo symptom! lol

    But, of course, you do get some cholesterol from food. Just not enough for me. Sigh.

  • Greygoose:

    Well, right now my cholesterol is 'normal' and surely eating healthily can't be bad regardless.

    That there's a connection between clogged arteries and food would seem to be a no brainer to me. Processed food, chemicals, additives are surely a part of the problem?

    B

  • Bill, it all depends what you mean by 'eating healthily'. If you mean cutting out all fats and salt, then it is bad. If you mean cutting out sugar, than it's good. But everyone seems to have their own idea of what is a healthy diet.

    However, I do agree that processed food, chemicals etc are part of a huge problem - probably leading to hypothyroidism in some cases. But what's that got to do with cholesterol?

    And I in no way criticised you for eating healthily. What I am saying is that statins are bad, bad, bad. You, obviously, read Dr Mercola. Haven't you seen what he's said about them? And I know from first hand experience with my friend that they can do you much more harm than good.

    I honestly think that the 'chemicals' we are prescribed by our doctors are the biggest problem of all!

    Merry Christmas - and don't spare the goose! lol Grey

  • Interestingly, I once read that so-called 'healthy spreads' such as sunflower and olive oil have a chemical added to them to make them set, and of course when you eat them you also eat the setting chemical. How can that do you any good? What's to stop it doing the same to the cholesterol in your blood?

    I totally agree with you that processed foods and chemical additives are the baddies of the modern diet.

    Although my cholesterol is 9.7 it did not cause my TIAs, that was due to clotting. I eat only natural fats like butter and EV olive oil, and most of that 9.7 is 'good' cholesterol.

    I use a rule of thumb that if a food is made in a factory, don't eat it!

  • Bill,

    Please be aware that if you are on medication for heart problems such as amiodarone

    this may prevent sunlight exposure - Vit D supplementation may affect this too. All I can offer is a recent discussion on amiodarone and insist you discuss implications with your GP.

    thyroiduk.healthunlocked.co...

    Jane

  • Jane,

    No I'm not on amiodarone. Do you want a list? asperin (zantac to counteract the asperin!), ramipril, lipitor (no more for now), Clopidogrel, and Cardicor. Never heard of amiodarone. But given how miserable the weather is here in the UK, maybe I need to dose up on vit D?

    Bill

  • Aspirin AND Clopidogrel? No wonder you need Zantac! Has the doctor reviewed your medication lately? Clopidogrel and aspirin are both antiplatelet treatments, both together is a double whammy which could give you stomach bleeds. See this from heartheatlthywomen.org

    'What are the risks of clopidogrel?

    Clopidogrel's side effects are similar to aspirin, including an increased risk of dangerous bleeding. Taking aspirin and clopidogrel together further increases this risk. Patients taking clopidogrel may also experience diarrhea and skin rashes.'

  • spelt it wrong

    hearthealthywomen.org

  • Reviewed my meds? I had to make a copy of the list of meds I got from the hospital because it wasn't given to my GP! A total breakdown between the hospital that treated me (very good) and my GP that sucks!

    B

  • PS: amiodarone seems to be a very potent chemical and not one I want to take, thanks very much. B

  • Hi there, my private doctor on her website says: suspect hypothyroidism if blood tests show raised cholesterol! :D

    drmyhill.co.uk/wiki/Hypothy...

  • Look, I can't argue with the blood test results that showed an underactive thyroid and at the time (when I was tested), I don't think I had raised cholesterol but I'd have to check (if my gp still has the first test I took back in 2008. It's all the competing ideas that gets me, so at the end of the day, who do you believe?

  • wbowles, I understand, there is a lot of 'competing' ideas out there, about many things, especially when it's 'medical stuff'.

    I guess you have to decide yourself which side to believe right?

    I believe my doctor, I have absolute 100% faith in her, I might be silly to someone else but that's what I like to do.

    You of course will have to decide yourself what or who you want to follow :)

  • Very useful, thanks.

    B

  • Hello wbowles,

    You wrote: "Yeah, I've been there and I'm not impressed. It seems to be more a fundraising outfit than anything else."

    I can confirm what RedApple has written above and agree absolutely with her comments. I am very proud to say that I am another of those who works voluntarily and frequently at my own expense to help those with thyroid disorders. You are right - Thyroid UK does have to raise money, but every penny of that money is used to help those suffering from thyroid disorders who have fallen through the cracks of our woeful health service, and judging by the huge numbers that have joined this site in its short existence we are catching a vast number of those people who've disappeared down those cracks. Even our CEO Lyn who works a 40+ hour week takes no salary! We have to make requests for money because we do not receive huge grants from government, industry or anywhere else.

    The replies that appear on this forum (which incidentally was set up by Thyroid UK) are suggestions, personal experiences and sometimes scientific facts that are designed to help, support, inform and hopefully point patients in the direction of medical advisers who will take appropriate action.

    Our help falls short of being able to diagnose and treat, but we do out best to offer all the help we can.

    The Thyroid UK site has a mountain of information on it, and it is also possible to obtain an Information pack from our office. You might find both useful.

    Best wishes,

    Jane

    Thyroid UK trustee

  • Dear Jane,

    You don't have to defend TUK to me, I'm not attacking it, it's just that when I visited the site some time ago, pretty much everything I looked at seemed to be geared to raising money (eg your info packs), which is fine but I don't support charities, I don't believe in them in this day and age. But that's just my opinion is all.

    "Woeful health service"? If you'd had said that doctors are largely bought and paid for by Big Pharma I would agree but last April, in spite of my ignorant gps (I could tell you a tale of my gp's almost fatal to me, failings), it was a 'woeful health service' that saved my life.

    It's a pity that TUK doesn't join forces with other orgs to stop the NHS from being privatized from the inside out. I talked to nurses who cried when I quizzed them about what was happening to the NHS. Most who work for it, are dedicated working people, who believe in the idea of a 'free' health service for all. The NHS is pretty much the only decent thing this country's ever done for the world. Had I had my heart attack in NYC, where I used to live, I probably wouldn't be alive today to write this.

    B

  • Although the front page has news items and information about fundraisers, there is a lot of information from the menu on the left hand side. If you visited some time ago, it is likely the site was under construction so many pages were not yet populated. This is not the case now. There is a lot of useful information on there.

    Thyroid UK ARE trying to change things. I'm sure someone can supply you with links to the good work that Lyn and others are doing to make sure that the treatment of thyroid patients improves.

    I'm sorry you didn't find it helpful when you needed it. I personally have found it, and this forum, very useful.

    Carolyn x

  • Dear Carolyn,

    I'm finding this forum very useful and I appreciate the work you all do but you don't have to be so defensive about TUK. As I said above, I'm not attacking it and I'm not saying it doesn't do useful work, especially this blog.

    B

  • I agree that the NHS is usually wonderful in an emergency situatiion and indeed have in the past felt myself to be very lucky to be in the UK when criticially ill.

    However, the understanding and treatment of chronic conditions isn't, in my opinion, nearly so good and in the case of thyroid disease is generally awful.

    I am lucky as I have an open-minded endo who is prepared to treat me with NDT, but most patients aren't this lucky. I think there are several NHS employees on here who are thyroid sufferers themselves who would agree with me about that.

    I don't understand why you don't believe in charities in this day and age? Who else would do this work? I am personally so grateful to TUK because it is through them and this forum that I have managed to regain my health.

  • I hope you will understand my personal reasons for not trusting the NHS, (having had experience of properly functioning health services in other countries - Canada, USA, Italy, Belgium), since the NHS is entirely responsible for allowing my husband to die from undiagnosed hypothyroidism having diagnosed him incorrectly with a heart condition, and also misdiagnosing my daughter (herself an NHS employee at the time) when she too had hypothyroidism, resulting in wrecking her life too.

    Emergency situations - fine, but chronic conditions - far from it!! I stand by my comment. The NHS is woeful and needs a major overhaul. If that means privatisation then bring it on. It will make no difference to me since I am having to pay for all my daughter's treatment now anyway as are many others on this site. Clearly we will not agree on this point, but I hope you can find some useful information on the main TUK site.

    As regards joining forces, if you go the the TUK home page thyroiduk.org, and click Current News you will see just a few of the groups with which we have links including INVOLVE and the APPG Consultation. We are not acting in a vacuum, but make conscious efforts to share and educate. There is a lot of work going on behind the scenes that does not reach this forum.

    Jane

  • Charities belong in the age of Victoria (which apparently is where this country is heading). There is no excuse for poverty of resources, the world is rich. We are more productive now than we have ever been! Of course, the wealth ain't dished out equitably...

  • I think I understand that you are criticising the NEED for charities rather than the charities themselves!

    As you can see from above, the people involved in this particular charity - Thyroid UK - are incredibly passionate about the work that they do to help and support people like yourself who are looking for information. If you require any information about the ethos and working practices of Thyroid UK (the charity running and moderating this online community), please feel free to check out our Annual Reports:

    thyroiduk.org.uk/tuk/About_...

    or to contact our CEO Lyn Mynott who will be available again on 3rd January - enquiries@thyroiduk.org

    Purely for information sake, you may also be interested to know that the platform for this community is supplied by HealthUnlocked at no charge to all of the support groups (http://www.healthunlocked.com/directory/?ref=hubar) - more charitable thinking. healthunlocked.com/communit...

    Louise Warvill

    Charity Secretary

    Thyroid UK

  • It seems my original inquiry has gotten lost in the post namely the issue of a link between levothyroxine and atorvastatin.

    B

  • My father-in-law was recently prescribed the same statin (he was previously on symvastatin) because his angina has returned due to an 80% blockage of one artery. The cardiologist felt it was more important to get this right. Incidentally, my father-in-law is very well on 100mcg of thyroxine and his blocked arteries are believed to be down to his life-style when he was younger: smoking heavily and eating a LOT of fried foods and processed meats.

    I'm sorry I can't specifically answer your question about whether you should continue with the Atorvastatin, and I doubt anyone else on here can, but what I can tell you is that high cholesterol most definitely appears to be connected with hypothyroidism. I have only ever had high cholesterol when inadequately treated for my hypothyroidism. Once on the correct thyroid hormones my cholesterol returns to normal. My GP regularly tests my glucose and lipids because he tells me this is a good indication of whether my thyroid is being correctly treated.

    Do you have your latest thyroid test results? Sometimes this can help us to see which is more likely; your thyroid causing your high cholesterol or something else.

    Taking statins with hypothyroidism can mask the fact that you may be inadequately treated. It can also make the symptoms of hypothyroidism worse. On the other hand, if your cholesterol is too high and in danger of causing your further problems with blocked arteries, it is important to get it down. If you are on inadequate thyroid replacement, increasing your dose or finding an alternative thyroid replacement, may be a much better answer to reducing your cholesterol level.

    I'm sorry I can't give you a definite answer about your statins but hopefully there is something here that can help you.

    Carolyn x

  • Hi Carolyn,

    The next time I get a test I'll get a copy of the results. Since the operation, I've had no problems with my heart. No pain, my blood pressure is a little high to normal, my cholesterol is 'normal' (though I've not been tested since stopping the statin).

    B

  • You might find this site useful:

    search.mercola.com/search/p...

    Dr. Mercola highlights a lot of research that is pertinent to users of this site. Not all of his articles are relevant but it is worth getting his newsletter to check out some of the articles. Jane

  • see my response above

  • I have always wondered why a doctor does not investigate raised cholesterol levels. You would think it was the logical thing to do, patient has raised cholesterol all of a sudden = there must be a reason = what is that reason? But its easier just to get you on statins regardless, they are prescribed like anti-depressants used to be!!!

  • Absolutely. The even more scary thing is that there is now a suggestion to put us all on statins as a preventative measure once we hit 50! That could have the effect of disguising further any low thyroid function which may be the cause of raised cholesterol. Jane x

  • well said glynisrose, it is far easier to them to stick you on statins.

    But the main NHS ethos is to give a pill to try and fix the symptom, they do not try and fix the 'cause', it is far more logical to fix the cause rather than the symptoms, then you eradicate the problem from where it stems!

    I hate it when I saw anyone regarding my chronic back pain and they say: are you taking painkillers???

    as if the answer is to take painkillers then you don't feel the pain and the chronic back pain is 'solved'??? NO, you are just merely 'masking' the pain, you are not fixing the cause of the pain right? I believe in pain killers for a short fixed purpose: ie I am in a lot of pain and I cannot physically move, I have done this in the short term in the past, but for moderate pain I rather know I have the pain and if I do anything which makes it better or worse I will know as I can feel it.

    Sorry to blab on LOL that is my latest experience anyway.

    'why is this person suffering from this and that' they should ask themselves.

    I'll stop now :D

  • Thank god for your website l,ve personally found it a great help and l,m amazed at the knowledge of the the regular blogs , as for statins my husband who has heart probs as just been told he will now get a cheaper one due to nhs cutbacks ,so having worked in a drs surgery l know the situation and think its detrimental to everyone on medication,in reguard to thyroid l think there should be a gp who specialise in that subject they have asthma,heart, diabetes and other health probs but have yet to find one for thyroid it should be mandatory for every surgery. three cheers for all at tuk that give their time and knowledge to help us all keep us informed , happy, healthy, and peaceful christmas to all and hope for better treatment in 2013. x

  • Thanks gemini, season's greetings and best wishes to you too! :)

  • The reason that you don't find a GP specialising in thyroid problems is, they don't get enough points for it! And what do points mean! Prizes! (see the post on that subject)

  • I'ma bit concerned about not being able to take statins with synthetic thyroxine. Due to cataracts, I asked for a blood test, mainly to check that I'm not diabetic as I am young to have an advanced cataract in one eye (52).Both blood sugar and thyroid function have produced borderline results before. My cholestrol has been pretty average in the past, with high levels of good cholestrol.It is now 7.1 again with high levels of good cholestrol. I eat well.

    I was surprised to be advised to take thyroxine, but having dithered a bit and read alot, decided to take it. I'm not sure whether I need it as I only have some symptoms ie fatigue and joint/ muscle pain. I gained weight after being prescribed Mirtazapine, mainly to help me sleep. I've had chronic insomnia for as long as I can remember, inspite of often feeling exhausted.The meds increased appetite and I went from a UK size 12 to 16 quickly. I'm still about the same ie not massive, your average frump.

    I also have slightly high blood pressure and to be honest feel more worried about the cardiac side than the thyroid.I'm only on 25 micrograms of Levothyrozine.

  • Your doctor has no clue!!!

    High Cholesterol is one of the symptoms of hypothyroidism and used to be one of the diagnostic tools before TSH alone became THE diagnostic tool.

    GP's are unaware of this and that is why they prescribe statins.

    Your cholesterol will come down when you reach optimal level meds, which means all symptoms go, therefore the GP should increase meds gradually, until you feel well, not only adjust doses according to TSH level.

    If you still have symptoms, they should add some T3 to a reduced T4.

  • My cholesterol and especially my triglycerides were on the high end before I started taking desiccated thyroid, but now they are even higher :(

  • The big problem I have is persuading my gp to use something other than the 'standard' thyroid test. Aside from feeling cold and brittle nails, I don't think I've ever had any under-active thyroid symptoms. Right now, I'm on 100mg of thyroxine. Is it enough? I dunno. I stopped taking Atorvastatin about 4 months ago and a couple of months ago my cholesterol was 7.1, exactly the same as it was back in 2008 when my blood test showed an underactive thyroid. My gp says 'this might be your usual level'. Duh! I've lost all faith in the medical 'profession'. Who to believe???

  • I believe there is a definite connection. I don't have a thyroid gland and when I am un dermedicated my cholesterol can be 10. As soon as I am on the correct dose, it reduces. I have familial high cholesterol anyway, but having read Dr Kendrick's book - I am not too worried and do try to keep it below 7.5 I don't take statins even tho they are pushed continuously, I think they may be beneficial for certain men who already have heart problems but for most women without, they probably do more harm than good!!

  • I was told my cholesterol was slightly higher because of my thyroid problem...it would helpful if doctor's could read from the same book.....

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