Thread: synthroid is making me fat
8/29/2005 8:14pm, #11Originally Posted by baofuhaibo
I would suggest you do some more research on Hyperthyroidism. You seemed to do some research on Synthroid, so you should have a good place to start on alternative treatments for it. Then (I know you don't trust doctors very much right now), take your findings to a doctor and discuss the best course of action for you. If your doctor has you on some generic template treatment that works for most people, it's time to find a doctor that will treat you specifically, not some textbook general treatment that works well for 90% of patients.
The bottom line is, you're afflicted with the condition (or perhaps you're not, since you don't seem to think so), so you've got much more of an interest in treating it. The Doctor has many other patients, but you're number one on your list of patients, so take matters into your own hands, and bring all the information you can find to him and discuss what direction YOU want to go with your treatment.Jaguar's MMA record
pre Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0
post Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0 (BOO YAA!!)
We're number one! All others are number two or lower.
- The Sphinx (Mystery Men)
8/29/2005 10:36pm, #129chambersGuest
I don't have hyperthyroidism, I have hypothyroidism. At least, that's what they say. I really don't see how it is possible to tell something like that from two blood tests. I remember him asking me a few questions about symptoms.
1. Have you been fatigued? .. Sure, who isn't fatigued sometimes.
2. Have you been depressed? .. I guess.
3. ... That was about it.
The truth is, I was experiencing no symptoms that anyone couldn't have said "yes" to if asked. I suspect he based his findings on that interview more than the blood tests. I went to the pharmacist for information today and the sheet they gave me said that the doctor is supposed to do blood tests a number of times to monitor any changes. My doctor did two (one time on two separate days a week apart) and then left me on these meds for a year without any checks. I went in last week and asked him if I could stop taking it. I told him about the weight gain which I feel is unhealthy. He took one blood test, felt me up, and sent me home. He called me the next day to say I should stay on the stuff.
I think it's crap. I'm not paying for a specialist to tell me what is obvious. I was put on this stuff for no reason other than saying that I was tired and a little depressed sometimes during an interview. I shouldn't be on Synthroid. It doesn't feel right. I feel bloated and achy all the time and I can't sleep. My hair is thinning and it's dry and lacking luster. Something is wrong now and nothing was wrong with me when I started taking it. I just overdid my workout my first two times back.
I do want to see a doctor to find out how I go about stopping. I am not sure if I reduce the dosage or the number of days a week or what. I don't know what other doctor to see so I'm just going to call Dr. Walsh and say I am going to pursue diet and vitamin supplements instead and ask for instructions. If he says I should stay on it then I'm going to tell him I won't. I do not belong on this medication and it's obvious from the change in my anatomy, disposition and energy levels. If I did have a problem, it was nothing compared to this one. I'd rather have hypothyroidism than the effects of this medication.
Last edited by 9chambers; 8/29/2005 10:44pm at .
8/29/2005 11:13pm, #139chambersGuest
Synthroid has never gone through the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval process. It was grandfathered in under the FDA's recognition of the safety and effectiveness of the natural desiccated thyroid drug, Armour Thyroid, which is made from the gland of pigs, and contains two forms of thyroid hormone, T4 and T3. Synthroid, however, is a synthetic drug that contains the synthetically manufacturered form of only one hormone, T4.
While the manufacturer states that "Synthroid has been recognized as safe and effective for more than 40 years," in 1997, the FDA said otherwise when they issued a very unusual requirement that levothyroxine drugs -- including Synthroid -- be required to go through a new drug application (NDA) process, as if they were a new drug that had never been on the market before.
In issuing its requirement for an NDA, the FDA stated: "...no currently marketed orally administered levothyroxine sodium product has been shown to demonstrate consistent potency and stability and, thus, no currently marketed orally administered levothyroxine sodium product is generally recognized as safe and effective." -- U.S. FDA
... Again, the FDA's justification for the nearly unprecedented act of calling for new drug application on a drug that had been on the market for more than 40 years was that "No currently marketed orally administered levothyroxine sodium product is generally recognized as safe and effective."
OVERUSE FUELS SYNTHROID'S SUCCESS
Many of you may be surprised to learn that a synthetic thyroid hormone was number two on the list. So was Marvin Kirschner, MD. Is hypothyroidism that common a disorder among Americans?
"No," replies Kirschner, chief of endocrinology for UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School (NJMS). He surmises that Synthroid's best-selling status points to two factors: 1. brand recognition by physicians over other generic thyroid hormone replacements, and 2. the overprescribing of thyroid hormones as a drug treatment for obesity.
"Overweight patients tell their physicians, 'I don't know why I'm so heavy, I must have a glandular problem,'" states Kirschner. "In response to these pleas, the physician prescribes Synthroid."
But does it work to control weight? No, says Kirschner. Although he says it initially increases overall metabolism and causes a temporary weight loss, the use of synthetic hormone does not rid the body of extra fat tissue. It attacks necessary muscle and bone tissue and lean body mass. Dr. Kirschner adds that Synthroid has long been discounted as a remedy for weight loss, but it is still being used improperly by probably millions of Americans.
I started on .25mcg Levothroxine one year ago. I continued to have a high TSH, and was increased to .50mcg. I immediately gained 8 lbs. and my stomach got bigger, I reduced dosage(on my own) to .25, but weight gain and bloating persist (look like I'm 4 mos. pregnant). My last thyroid test was last week, and now my TSH is up from 8.5 to 10, and doctor wants to increase back to .50mcg. I want to quit the synthroid completely, as I think it is messing up my metabolism more than helping. Anyone else had this result from using synthroid, and has anyone just stopped taking it (or in my case I actually weaned off it)? If so, what happened over several months. ...
I, too, have had an upper distended and bloated stomach for over 2 years or more. I am also overweight, (200 lbs on a 5 ft. frame) which doesn't help. I take 0.75 of Synthroid daily. I had a skipping heartbeat problem which was diagnosed as hyperthyroidism. I took the radioactive pill which put me into hypothyroidism. Now my heart is skipping beats again and also speeding up with skipping in between. This happens as my stomach is trying to digest a meal. I notice my heart has to work harder to do this. My TSH was just done, and within "normal limits" whatever that is.
I haven't attributed my upper stomach problem to the synthroid, just never thought of it. I thought once my thyroid was under control, that I'd begin to lose weight, lol. Any feedback would be appreciated. - Sally
Couldn't believe weight gain since being on Synthroid. My stomach has become grossly distended that I look and feel pregnant. Can't fit into any of my clothes anymore. Don't want to go out with my husband, don't want to see certain friends and family. Doc wants me in for TSH test this week - they have to "squeeze me in"... don't really like my endocrinologist office...anyone in Atlanta have suggestions?
What I can say is that my hair, cuticles and skin look much better. Hair not coming out in clumps anymore, cuticles not all dry and bleeding (not a biter either). And, no more sleepy spells around 3pm.
... Crap. They say seaweed has iodine in it. I'd rather eat that. Oddly enough, it might help me to quit drinking the water around here too.
Up until the 1950s, European doctors used fluoride to reduce the activity of the thyroid gland for people suffering from overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism). (24) The daily dose of fluoride which people are now receiving in fluoridated communities (1.6 to 6.6 mg/day) (25) actually exceeds the dose of fluoride which was found to depress the thyroid gland (2.3 to 4.5 mg/day). (26)
Hypothyroidism (under-active thyroid) is currently one of the most common medical problems in the United States. Synthroid, the drug doctors prescribe to treat hypothyroidism, was the fourth most prescribed drug in the US in the year 2000. Symptoms of hypothyroidism include depression, fatigue, weight gain, muscle and joint pains, increased cholesterol levels, and heart disease.
... Dr. Richard Shames, a Harvard and University of Pennsylvania graduate who served at the NIH, believes that we are witnessing an autoimmune low-thyroid epidemic. Doctors on the Thyroid Unit at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in NYC have revealed that 20 million Americans are currently being treated for thyroid problems. Synthroid, just one of the various thyroid medicines, is now either first or second most-prescribed drug in the US. The University of Colorado Health Sciences Center estimates that there are over 13 million more Americans who have undiagnosed thyroid problems that are causing many of their uncomfortable symptoms (fatigue, depression, excess weight, infertility, miscarriage, severe menopause, dry skin, constipation, hair loss). Karilee Shames, RN, PhD, Assistant Professor of Nursing, points out that a major environmental trigger of low thyroid is likely to be the fluoride added to municipal water supplies. Scientists believe that fluoride can depress thyroid functions with levels as low as 2. 5 mg/ day, even though (according to a 1991 government report estimates that) adults in fluoridated areas ingest an average of 3.9 mg daily. Drs. Richard and Karilee Shames suggest that in a misguided attempt to help curb cavities in young children, we may be unwittingly poisoning our collective endocrine systems. In fact, the Shames are quick to point out, there really is no solid research on the long-term effects of fluoride on the human body, even though it has been used for over fifty years. Equally disturbing is the current substitution of an industrial silicofluroide waste product in place of the original pharmaceutical grade of sodium fluoride, without proper research.
8/29/2005 11:18pm, #14Originally Posted by baofuhaibo
Let's make an analogy. Pretend that you're having a conversation with some fellow people on the Net about what kind of healthy food to buy on a limited budget. Than I decide to chime in and say, "I spend $6000 a day on food and i don't budget for crap."
Amazingly it just makes me look like a dick doesn't it? And actually in this situation you look like an even bigger knob.
8/30/2005 2:38am, #15
Oh crap. Poor reading skills, sorry about that. Anyway, it seems like you have your mind made up, but again, I say do some research into Hypothyroidism on your own, and bring the findings (as well as your personal decision on quitting synthroid and what you would like to do as an alternative) to a different doctor. It sounds like you have an awful doctor (although to be fair, we're only really hearing your side of it, but that side seems to raise a few red flags). Make sure you bring up your doubts about Hypothyroidism. Perhaps they will run more extensive tests, or agree with you and decide to do some better follow ups.
Anyway, I say find another doctor, and think of them as more of a medical consultant based on your research. You should have a doctor that cooperates with you and has your best interest in mind (which is why you need to bring up your own decisions and what you feel is in your best interest).
Good luck, though.Jaguar's MMA record
pre Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0
post Kung Fu and BJJ: 0-0-0 (BOO YAA!!)
We're number one! All others are number two or lower.
- The Sphinx (Mystery Men)
9/13/2005 2:22am, #169chambersGuest
Actually, he never said I have Hypothyroidism. He said that he thinks my thyroid dumps everything all at once and that I don't have enough the rest of the day. I'm not sure what that is or how you'd determine that from two blood tests a week apart. I think his decision to put me on meds was based largely on the interview.
The dosage isn't even that big really, 50mcg. If I ever did have a problem then I can deal with that in a better way. Kemp (seaweed) is a natural alternative and I exercise way more than back when I was originally diagnosed. I can adjust my diet as needed. Whatever. No problem.
He's not a bad doctor. In fact, he's usually pretty cool. I think he was following standard procedure for someone with these symptoms ... fatigue, depression, insomnia, etc. The problem is, anyone could answer yes to that stuff. I did because I'm a single guy in my 30s and I was under a lot of stress and not getting much sleep due to taking care of my parents full-time while they were in and out of the hospital and rehab that whole year.
Synthroid is the second most prescribed medicine in America right now. I think a lot of it has to do with these interviews. The symptoms associated with Hypothyroidism (or whatever he thought I had) are pretty common symptoms in the general population. Everyone feels fatigued. Everyone feels a little depressed now and then. A lot of people have trouble sleeping.
Anyway, I started cutting my pills in half on August 29th and started cutting them in quarters on September 3rd. I quit taking them on September 9th. My stomach always felt bloated before and now it doesn't. I can breath better, kick higher and I don't feel kinda pregnant. I've lost four pounds this week. I'm not up all night with my heart racing. I feel fine. No fatigue. No depression. Nothing. I think this is going to work out just fine.
Last edited by 9chambers; 9/13/2005 2:28am at .
10/22/2005 1:33am, #179chambersGuest
UPDATE: It's now October 22 and I've lost 8 pounds since I quit taking Synthroid on September 9th. I feel great. No problems.
10/22/2005 8:41am, #18
Did you try going to a different doctor?
10/22/2005 8:12pm, #199chambersGuest
Since I was not taking that high of a dosage (50mcg) and since my doctor never really said I had hypothyroidism I just decided on my own that stopping was the way to go. I should have consulted another doctor. That would have been the safest route. I just didn't want to mess with it anymore.
I don't recommend that anyone else just drop their medication. I just think it was the right thing to do in my situation. Anyway, it feels good to be dropping weight. That will do much more to improve my overall health and fitness than any medication could have done.