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Anybody know anything about cytomel?


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Hey all,

This is for all of you out there who deal with metabolic disorders... I was wondering what you all know about the drug cytomel?  Around the middle of March, I began seeing an endocrinologist about my hypothyroidism.  I have been on synthroid since I was eleven years old (I just turned 23, so for over half of my life), and I have always been heavy.  Recently, within the last couple of years, I also started dealing with bad scalp psoriasis and some depression, which I was told by my family doctor could be caused by my hypothyroidism.  I started seeing this endocrinologist, and he prescribed me some cytomel to take with my synthroid.  I'm taking 125 mcg of synthroid every day, plus now I'm taking half of a 25 mcg pill of cytomel every other day.  I don't know if that's a normal dosage of cytomel or not... but I want to know, if any of you out there are taking it, how does it affect you?

My weight has always been high since I was a little girl, thanks to my wonderful hypothyroid, which made it difficult for me to lose weight.  2 years ago, at 5'3" I weighed 230 pounds, but I was as happy as a clam.  Then some stuff happened, depression set in, and I began dabbling with what some people call an eating disorder.  The weight started to fly off... it was the only way that I had tried that ever worked for me.  I tried calorie restriction and exercise... none of it worked, I just couldn't get the weight to budge.  Anyways, to make a long story short, I'm still healing from some stuff, but in the meantime, I've been attempting just to be healthy, and forget about this last little bit of weight I have to lose.

I started taking the cytomel on March 18.  In the just over a month that I've been taking it, I have been eating on average 1650 calories per day, running 16-20 miles per week, as well as living a pretty busy life as a college student who is student teaching and attempting what some of my professors have called an impossible double major.  Many of my depressive symptoms have begun to clear up, I don't feel so hopeless and sad all the time.  I can wake up in the morning without feeling like I've been run over by a truck; I actually get up an hour before class starts feeling rested, instead of five minutes before class and feeling like a slug!  I feel like I've been binging on that many calories, but miraculously, I have been losing about a pound per week, sometimes more.  Last Saturday April 21, I weighed 147 lbs 10 ounces.  Today I weighed 144 pounds 13 ounces.  I am not sure how this is happening... I was NEVER able to do this on just the synthroid.  Is this the cytomel?  Is this what my body has been missing all of those years on synthroid when I couldn't get any weight to budge off my hips?

Ok... enough of me... I'm just kind of excited about this and I had to share.  If anybody has had any similar experiences, please share!
Edited Apr 29 2007 02:18 by united2gether
Reason: moved to new Health & Support forum
81 Replies (last)
zani
May 01 2007 00:26
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#1  
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I took Cytomel for several months and i didn't feel anything.  I didn't get any of the results you're getting.  I wonder if I should have tried it for longer!  Did the results you saw happen right away?  Like i said i was on it for maybe 3 months and just decided to quit taking it because i didn't want to take another pill if it wasn't going to do anything.  Now that I'm looking back at your post it looks like the changes were immediate.  That's wonderful!!
It wasn't quite immediate... it took a couple of weeks to set in.  It was about 3 weeks after I began taking it that I started noticing the difference.  I used to always be a "night showerer", that is, I used to take a shower at night right before I went to bed because I knew that I wouldn't want to get up early to take one before class... and I now I'm up every morning to take one with no problems.  And I'm not sure what's happening with the weight thing.  It's almost like I'm not even trying, yet I'm still losing... hope I'm not jinxing it by saying that! Maybe it's the running... I've never run so much in my life, maybe because I've never been thin and fit enough to do it until now.  I really don't know.  But I do know that my depression is not as strong.  I do notice that seasons and the weather have a lot to do with my mood, perhaps some of my issues with depression are season related and now that it's spring (FINALLY!) I'm beginning to feel better.  Who knows.  I don't know if it's the cytomel... but I like to think it is, and I hope that it continues!  Thanks for sharing with me!
#3  
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I have fatigue, weight gain, fuzzy brain, dry skin and depression. I have been taking a natural compound of T3/t4 for 2 years now with NO EFFECT. Two weeks ago, new doc put me on T3 from compound pharmacy, in Sustained Release form. (Cytomel is instant release) He started me week one at 25mcg and then went up to 50mcg. Oh my gosh! I noticed IMMEDIATE improvement ... I felt like a human being again. Fatigue is GONE. No heart palps or wired feeling (I am very prone to that with certain other meds). I am on a medically supervied 1000 calorie diet on which I was previously losing 1 pound a week; I have now lost 2.5 pounds per week since the Cytomel. My depression has lifted and I am now singing around the house and cleaning my house (any household chores were impossible for me to face for the last 4 years.) I did a workout video for the first time in 5 years this morning. I'm sleeping like a baby. I LOVE my new doctor. I'm only sad someone else didn't think of this protocol sooner. Lots of wasted time.
I have just read all the above posts with extreme interest. 

I was diagnosed  hypothyroid about 7 years ago, 3 months after having a fully hysterectomy.  On March 14, 2007, I quit a 33 year smoking habit - and I have crashed.  I have inadvertently sent my thyroid/hormonal/metabolism into a tail spin.  Total blown out depression symptoms, almost stroke-like conditions intermittently, fuzzy brain, little memory retention, little ability to focus, etc. 

I have been to the doctor and got revised blood tests which showed normal T3 and T4 levels but a TSH of 14.32.  I take 0.2 mg levothyroxine daily.  Pituitary is firing out instructions but thyroid is not listening is a sumnation of what that means. I'm waiting to see my first endocrinologist.

Just today, I started reading up on the adrenal glands and how they can be a part of these problems.  Low cortisol levels are quite often a contributing factor and treatment to boost the cortisol levels can be extremely helpful in correcting many depression-like symptoms.
#5  
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hi, lornajean,

very interesting. I had tried taking low dosagel natural cortisone about a year ago ... but unfortunately it made me eat lke crazy and bloated my stomach.

It just amazes me how different we all are; and how one medicine works for some and another works for another ... which makes this all frustrating if you're not feeling better!!!

I am also perimenopausal and have finally (after 3 years of trial and error) balanced out my estrogen and progesterone to some decent numbers.

What craziness, huh? :0)
I can actually think of many words to describe it right now - none of them very pretty but FRUSTRATING is at the top of my list today!
#7  
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Yes. It's a result of Cytomel. As you probably already know Synthroid is a synthetic version of the t4 hormone, which is converted to t3 in the body. Cytomel is pure t3, which is 3 to 4 times more potent than t4, the prohormone for t3. Your t3 mainly drives  your cell metabolism. So the higher your t3 levels, the better your Basal Metabolic Rate (BRM). So the real magic is in t3 not t4. Normally, the dosage can go as high as 100mcg a day. I just started off on 50mcg a day. I'm impressed that your getting that great of a BRM increase from just 12mcg a day! Did I hear that right? Cytomel does have a half-life of 48 hours. Also, you might want to look into Armour Natural Thyroid (a t3 and t4 compound). Here's a good argument from a patient in support of it over Synthroid:

http://thyroid.about.com/cs/thyroiddrugs/l/bl letter.htm
#8  
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Cytomel helped me lose weight.  I was on Levo for 1 year and felt terrible.  When I started taking Levo I gained 1.5 lbs. per week.  I started taking cytomel and started to lose weight after a few weeks.  It  literally changed my life.  I feel sooooo much better now.  I can work, play, and I am at a normal weight.  Everyone is different.  I take 5 mcg of cytomel 2 times a day.  I also take 50 mg of Levo 2 times a day.  My 23 year old daughter has had a terrible time getting doses right.  She does better on Armour Thyroid (natural) some doctors don't like to use this though.  The cytomel was too much for her but she was also having probelms with her estrogen at the same time.  I think no matter who you are, as we age we will need to tweak our doses and drugs.  Good luck.  Read books by Shames, Shoman, and Blanchard.  Learn about the disease and find a good doctor who listens.

April
I take Cytomel along with my Synthroid.  I went to an endo who prescribed a drug called Thyrolar.  It's a combination of Synthroid and Cytomel in one pill form.  That really worked for me - until it started to get prescribed so heavily that the manufacturer was backordered for about 6 months.  So, I went on the two pill formula - but I think that the Thyrolar actually worked better for me.  I'm gong to be asking my doctor to put me back on it next checkup.  Just another option for you to look into.  :)
The only time I took cytomel was two weeks before the two weeks leading up to my cancer treatment for thyroid cancer. My endo is absolutely against taking it at any other time, but that might just be my case.

My endo always tells me that loosing weight is more difficult, but not impossible, lol. and to work had and all that.

What dosage level were you taking? Most likely you were taking too small a dose. If you tried and never went above 10mcg, then you quit too soon. 

Unfortunately most Endo's are to conservative with Cytomel treatment, which might be your case. 

Personally, I feel if Endo's fail to prescribe Cytomel, or the high enough dose, they should be held liable for Malpractice.  It is such worlds of difference on how you feel better when you get your dosages right. 

Cytomel is fast acting (literally some people feel the results within minutes of taking the medication).

 It also has a very short half life (about 48 hours). So you have to be very diligent about taking it and the time you take it, etc.  (else you'll go through waves as the medicince burns out of your system at inconsistent times).

  

 

I love to read posts like this. I have wasted 7-years of my life before I went onto Cytomel. I've been on it for 45-days and it is WORLD's Pluto-Mercury differences in how good I feel.  Please, if your Endo is not giving you Cytomel, (and your symptoms are not improving), FIND A NEW DR. that will try Cytomel.  It is UNACCEPTABLE to think you have to feel Fatigued, Depressed, Apathetic all the time, simply because a Dr. fails to prescribe the meds that you need!!  Please keep trying!!! 
Original Post by pupsweet:

I have fatigue, weight gain, fuzzy brain, dry skin and depression. I have been taking a natural compound of T3/t4 for 2 years now with NO EFFECT. Two weeks ago, new doc put me on T3 from compound pharmacy, in Sustained Release form. (Cytomel is instant release) He started me week one at 25mcg and then went up to 50mcg. Oh my gosh! I noticed IMMEDIATE improvement ... I felt like a human being again. Fatigue is GONE. No heart palps or wired feeling (I am very prone to that with certain other meds). I am on a medically supervied 1000 calorie diet on which I was previously losing 1 pound a week; I have now lost 2.5 pounds per week since the Cytomel. My depression has lifted and I am now singing around the house and cleaning my house (any household chores were impossible for me to face for the last 4 years.) I did a workout video for the first time in 5 years this morning. I'm sleeping like a baby. I LOVE my new doctor. I'm only sad someone else didn't think of this protocol sooner. Lots of wasted time.

 

I am so thrilled to hear this!

I am also hypo with no results on levoxyl.  Started taking 25mcg of cytomel yesterday (day 1) along with my .075 levoxyl.  Was secretly hoping for all of those "miracle reactions" that some people report immediately.

I even told  my husband to come home for lunch and perhaps he might find me prancing around the house in a french maid's outfit dusting everything in sight!

Ohhh, but sadly, that was not the case.  Day one on cytomel came and went with no change for me.  I remained my usual "Queen of Slugville" self, with as much energy as NYC during a blackout. Frown

Did I mention that I'm impatient??!

So here we go on day two of cytomel.  I have marked my calendar so that I can refer back and mark any significant changes, and how long it took to kick in (if it ever will).  I am going to give it 4 weeks at 25mcg/day along with my levoxyl to see if I notice any changes.  After that, I'm going to ask for a boost in my daily cytomel dosage...maybe 50mcg/day??

I should also mention that I am not your typical hypo thyroid patient, as I don't seem to have weight issues.  I am a happily married 42 year-old stay-home mother of three schoolage children.  6 feet tall, 145 lbs, very athletic and active.

Been hypo for the last 21 years.  My symptoms for the last 18 months include:

HAIRLOSS, constant fatigue (cannot emphasize that enough), constipation, memory loss, brain fog.  Did I mention memory loss?  I can't remember...

(joke!!)

Anyway, I hope to report my findings while on cytomel for anyone who might have an interest.  I do know that drugs work differently on all people.  Such is the diverse and complicated makeup of all of us!  Good luck to everyone.

I hope to start feeling better soon, as I am sitting here STILL in my jammies and slippers...sad but true...10:23 am.  Wow.  QUEEN OF SLUGVILLE!!!

 

Keep us posted please! =0)

Hey everyone!! I just learned, today, that my doctor is decreasing my synthroind from 125mcg to only 88mcgCry; however, he is adding 25mcg of cytomel a day.  I have heard some great things about cytomel; however, I am kind of skeptical as to how well it will work if my synthroid is dropped so low.  I already feel horrible as it is.  Does anyone know if this is normal???  Please enlighten me!Foot in mouth

#16  
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I was just perscribed Cytomel by my endo to go along with my .75 Levoxyl.  My thyroid was removed 3 years ago and have been on only Levoxyl for all that time.  Was doing fine then about a year an half ago started gaining weight and losing my hair, sooo tired all the time.  My endo has changed my dosage of Levoxyl about three time without any change in my symptoms. Asked him to let me try Aromour Thyroid but he refused to perscribe it.  After threating to change drs. he perscribed Cytomel to go along with the Levoxyl ,only .5 mcg per day. 1/2 in the morn and 1/2 at night.  I was glad to read about your experience.  I have been gaining weight so fast without any change in my lifestyle.  Has anyone had any side effects from Cytomel?  I plan on giving this about 4 weeks to see if there's any change then finding a dr who will consider the Armour Thyroid.  Have been with my Endo for over 10 years but might need to change. Has anyone been on the Armour Thyroid?

 

 

Frany, I am so glad for your post!  I have been checking back since I posted. My doc told me to give the cytomel atleast 8 weeks...I was prescribed cytomel on the 4th of June and I go back for blood work in early August.  So far, small, small weightloss, but on the + side, no more gaining!  As for the Armour, so many people have sooooo many great things to say about it, but I tried it before, gained 17 pounds, and I felt absolutely horrible.  Like you, I do not have any thyroid function at all, and I think that some things that work for some, do not work for us.  The Armour is natural, so it is harder to control the actual dosage...each pill could be different.  I even do horrible on the generic levy. I have been doing research, because no matter what, I do not feel like  myself!  I have read up on some research surgeries done in China that consists of transplanting thyroid tissue on your forearm muscle and it starts producing hormones!  Most of the patients were able to discontinue use of their meds, and one was put back on her meds; however, I feel like even a little bit of natural hormone is better than none.  I have also found a place called that specializes in biomedical hormones here in my hometown.  It's expensive, but I plan on atleast going to the consultation because they do a full work-up on you.  Most endos only test thyroid function, and so many other vital organs and glands are affected in our bodys from hypothyroidism.  Anyways, please see if you can find out some more info about the research surgery because I have run into a wall!  Take care and keep me posted!

CHANG ENDO, CHANGE ENDO, CHANGE ENDO.

is your Endo over the Age of 45?

If so, CHANGE ENDO'S!!!

It IS ABOSOLUTELY CRIMINAL he won't prescribe Cytomel. It changed my LIFE. For 10 years I suffered until I was put on Cytomel.


I cannot scream from the roof tops loud enough...


change endo's!!!!!

Then, when you get on a proper dosage of cytomel, SUE your former Endo for MALPRACTICE!!!!!!

Change ENDO'S, Change ENDo's.....

 

 

Give it a few weeks, THEN tell your husband to come home and check on you dusting in your B-Day suit!!! :-)....
It took me about 3 solid weeks before it worked, but BOY OH BOY WHEN IT DID...you'll wonder how in the hell you survived in your "old self" it will be such a DRAMATIC improvement.....don't give up....
Original Post by laxwife:

I am so thrilled to hear this!

I am also hypo with no results on levoxyl.  Started taking 25mcg of cytomel yesterday (day 1) along with my .075 levoxyl.  Was secretly hoping for all of those "miracle reactions" that some people report immediately.

I even told  my husband to come home for lunch and perhaps he might find me prancing around the house in a french maid's outfit dusting everything in sight!

Ohhh, but sadly, that was not the case.  Day one on cytomel came and went with no change for me.  I remained my usual "Queen of Slugville" self, with as much energy as NYC during a blackout. Frown

Did I mention that I'm impatient??!

So here we go on day two of cytomel.  I have marked my calendar so that I can refer back and mark any significant changes, and how long it took to kick in (if it ever will).  I am going to give it 4 weeks at 25mcg/day along with my levoxyl to see if I notice any changes.  After that, I'm going to ask for a boost in my daily cytomel dosage...maybe 50mcg/day??

I should also mention that I am not your typical hypo thyroid patient, as I don't seem to have weight issues.  I am a happily married 42 year-old stay-home mother of three schoolage children.  6 feet tall, 145 lbs, very athletic and active.

Been hypo for the last 21 years.  My symptoms for the last 18 months include:

HAIRLOSS, constant fatigue (cannot emphasize that enough), constipation, memory loss, brain fog.  Did I mention memory loss?  I can't remember...

(joke!!)

Anyway, I hope to report my findings while on cytomel for anyone who might have an interest.  I do know that drugs work differently on all people.  Such is the diverse and complicated makeup of all of us!  Good luck to everyone.

I hope to start feeling better soon, as I am sitting here STILL in my jammies and slippers...sad but true...10:23 am.  Wow.  QUEEN OF SLUGVILLE!!!

 

 

I think that is sooo true!  I have been through so many endos and most of them are old as hell!  I got this new one this past June, and when I described my symptoms, he didn't even hesitate to add cytomel.  I go back next month for a follow up and blood work...the only thing I was skeptical of was the fact that my Synthroid was cut back from .125 to only .88.  Is that standard?

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