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Addison's Disease Message Board

Addison's Disease Board Index

Hi: I understand what you are going through. But, first I would like to ask you what your Dr said with regard to your oriiginal TSH being pretty much the popluation average, "good" TSH, and your Ft4 being so low? The classic hypo scenario is elevated TSH and either low or below range Ft4, Ft3.

It could be a secondary hypothyroidism, but I am not sure if the TSH has to be really low or not. It could be that all that is necessary is to have [I]inadequate [/I]TSH, to put out a decent amount of T4, but I am not certain. I would ask my dr.

[QUOTE=nervx;3653015]Below are the results from the thyroid tests:

March 08: T3 -- 92 [58 - 159], Free T4 -- .85 [.70 - 1.48], TSH -- 1.06 [0.4 - 4.00], TPO -- <60 [ - U/mL] [/QUOTE]

On the hard time you were having with the thyroxine - it could be you would tolerate synthroid or another preparation better. You can find this info on the web that some do better on certain preparations. I tried this, but it was not the problem.

The other main reasons are (as you might already know) adrenal insufficiency (or some degree thereof) and iron deficiency anemia (maybe low ferritin if not anemic)

You do need to check your ferritin, and some recomend it be optimum at between 70-100. Mine is 23, and has been for a year, tho I am working on it very hard now, with 2x a day iron.

As far as adrenal sufficiency (or some degree thereof), interfering with your ability to tolerate thyorid meds, you need to get the proper tests done to assess if this is the case.

If you go on Armour (or higher dose) and have this problem, you will only exacerbate things as I ended up doing. :(

I went to an integrative medicine dr, who uses saliva testing for free cortisol levels and to trace the diurnal pattern. Mainstream drs may not accept this as "proof" of anything, but it is a useful tool. If you just want to start safe, and it is all you can manage to get from your dr, I would ask for an AM serum cortisol and ACTH. This might shed some light on your situation.

Any AM cortisol between 5 and 19 mcg/dL (pretty sure on this ), is indeterminate and requires dynamic testing. This rule of thumb is comminly found in the med literature. Dynamic testing commonly means and ACTH stimulation test.

You also need a DHEA-s serum preferred to saliva. It is a useful tool in diagnosing a primary hypoadrenal vs. secondary hypoadrenal situation. It is also the precursor to much of a woman's testosterone. It is also instrumental in mood.

My DHEA-s low and so is my testosterone, while my other sex hormones seem to be ok.


As far as your treatment on levo and armour at such low levels, I made this mistake as well, and had drs talk me into it. Bascially, exogenous hormone will supress your own production. So, most people end up taking a full replacement dose. By taking a small dose, you are merely suppressing your own funtion and adding in the small mcg/mg to it. As you can see, your TSH may have gone down, but your Ft4 is basically the same. I don't know how it is affecting your Ft3, it may be that suppressing your thyroid is actually lowering yout Ft3. Have you felt more depressed since treatment? I have felt more depressed on low dose only.

Of course, you do need to check on your Ft3.

Many seem to think that once you start thyroid treatment, it is less important to look at the TSH and more important to look at the free values. Ultimately it depends how you feel.


If you are feeling depressed, it is not your fault, it is very much a consequence of your thyroid issue, and possible adrenal issue. Any search of Pubmed will provide you with tantalizing titles of articles related to psych issuses and endocrine disease.

I myself had untreated hypo for years (and maybe adrenal)...and ended up seeking mental health services. Unfortunately, I was treated with antidepressants and worse, all of which worked against my endocrine problem (s). Then one day my dr found I was hypo. Then, I ordered my old medical records and saw I had been hypo for years and years!

I was on thyroxine for about a year and then tried armour. It did uncover and exacerbate my adrenal issues, and now I can tolerate no thyroid meds of any description. I felt much better on thyroxine than without it, and [COLOR="Magenta"]fantastic [/COLOR]on Armour. I now have an adrenal situaiton I am dealing with and hopefully I will get back on thyroid meds soon. :(

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