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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
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#21  
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I starting my 2nd week on Cytomel and really don't feel much difference.  I was only going to give it about 2 weeks and then find a dr to prescribe Armour, but after reading the posts I will give it at least 4 weeks. 

My concern is that my endo isn't giving me enough to make a difference and that he only prescribed .5mcg, 1/2 morn & 1/2 night to stop me from complaining about taking just the T4 Lyvoxol.  I'm considering upping it on my own to .5mcg morn & .5mcg at night to start.   Any thoughts?

I am curious to know how anyone is doing with the HAIR LOSSon Cytomel. Has it helped at all?  I am really scared that pretty soon my head will be hairless. I have been losing my hair steadily for about 18 months now.

 

 

 

I have been on both Cytomel and Synthroid for a couple of years now. Synthroid helps to keep your TSH level normal and Cytomel helps with the T4.  It is important that you take the Synthroid first thing in the morning on an empty stomach with no other meds and then take the Cytomel a little later.  It took a few months of taking both drugs for me to see a difference.  The important thing about these meds is to work with your doctor to figure out what levels your body functions best with.  For example a TSH can be 2.0 and still be considered normal but if mine is higher than .5 I gain weight, have the itchy skin, get really bitchy and sleep all the time, so I make the doctor tell me the actual blood levels and go with how my body is reacting to determine proper doses.  Luckily for me I have found a great family doctor and an excellent endocrinologist to follow my hypothyroid dysfunction.  I am glad it is working for you!

Yes, unfortunately I think WAY TOO MANY people fall into this trap. Almost like a learned helplessness. I surely did. I kept INSISTING to Dr's *something* must be wrong with me, and NONE would listen until I finally found the right one.
Actually, if you think about it. A job as a Dr. is just like any other job. A Dr. does not want to "create" more work for himself, so they are VERY UNLIKELY to use the good old scientific method they learned in school....Just like us, they have kids, chores, other stuff to do...so they'll always do the least amount of work possible. That's why I mention going to a younger Dr.  If you think about it. A Younger Dr. is fresh out of school, "eager", still has the skip in his step wanting to make an improvement on the world. He's more likely too keep up with current events, read trade publications, etc. This is all because he's not been "soured" by HMO's, Insurance, and all the other hassles that go with running a medical practice.   In my mind, I'd search out a young Dr. that's willing to TREAT you as an individual patient.
Original Post by prettyd33:

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?

 

I'm assuming that's a Typo, but Cytomel works on your T3 (not T4). T4 is the agent that makes changes in the T3, and it's ultimately what you want to "correct" ...but just to make clear, Cytomel works on T3 levels.
Original Post by coffeetalk67:

I have been on both Cytomel and Synthroid for a couple of years now. Synthroid helps to keep your TSH level normal and Cytomel helps with the T4.  It is important that you take the Synthroid first thing in the morning on an empty stomach with no other meds and then take the Cytomel a little later.  It took a few months of taking both drugs for me to see a difference.  The important thing about these meds is to work with your doctor to figure out what levels your body functions best with.  For example a TSH can be 2.0 and still be considered normal but if mine is higher than .5 I gain weight, have the itchy skin, get really bitchy and sleep all the time, so I make the doctor tell me the actual blood levels and go with how my body is reacting to determine proper doses.  Luckily for me I have found a great family doctor and an excellent endocrinologist to follow my hypothyroid dysfunction.  I am glad it is working for you!

 

I have  been on 60mg of Armour since March.  I am also on a natural product for adrenal fatigue.  However,  I am still tired, foggy brain and my memory is terrible.  I am tired upon waking and have a hard time getting started with my day.  Then once I am moving I feel exhausted between 3-4Pm.  Then get a second wind early evening.  I am out as soon as my head hits the pillow.  I am unable to lose weight.  That has never been a problem for me until this past year.  UGH!!!!  I have increased my Armour by 30mgs the past two weeks and notice no difference.  Should I suggest Cytomel to my doctor???  It seems that this has worked for others.  What do I need to look for in my labs?  I just want my energy and life back!

 

Thanks,  Tracy

 

haps
Jul 25 2008 15:28
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#26  
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My thyroid tests came back normal, although my T3 was on the low end of normal.  I am 53, have been depressed most of my life, but in the last few years, it's gotten worse and is becoming unbearable.  Varying success with antidepressants, but couldn't deal with the weight gain.   I've been on prozac (30mg) for about a month.  Finally persuaded my psychopharm to prescribe Cytomel.  I started on 12.5mcg three weeks ago; now I'm at 37.5mcg.  I'm not feeling any better, but I am encouraged by your posts that suggest it may take three weeks or longer.  My question is:  how do I balance the dosages of prozac and cytomel?  Am I taking enough of each?  My doc says go up to 50mcg of cytomel, but I'm feeling jumpy at 37.5mcg.  Has anyone had any experience combining cytomel and antidepressants for depression?  I would appreciate any advice you can give me! I feel like I am wasting my life....

#27  
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I have been hypothyroid and on synthroid for over 10 years.  It wasn't until a few weeks ago a doctor bothered to check my T3 level.  So although my T4 and TSH numbers were normal, I wasn't converting to T3 and thus still hypothyroid.  I am now on synthroid and cytomel and am hoping that it will help will a lot of the symptoms such as fatigue, memory loss, inability to concentrate, etc.

#28  
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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.

 Hi Pupsweet,

What, do you mind if I ask, was the name of the medication you went on that was a sustained release form of T3? I have been taking Armour but got really bad heart palpitations and waking up at night (not normally the case w/me!) However it did help my hair loss. Because of the heart palps I was forced to stop, now I am taking a very tiny dose but my hair is falling out more again. Help! Wondering if a t3 only form would be a good alternative to t3/t4 like armour?
Thanks,

Coco

Amazing - your posts ALL have my symptoms too - particularly since I had my child.  I got pre-eclampsia half way through the preg and have never been the same since.  What really got me were some of those last posts in the thread about flakey scalp, itching and losing hair, plus odd periods.  Mine are an average of 23 days, yet this month (when I carefully calculated that I would be fine to visit the OBGYN) it decides to go the full 28 (still not here yet) and yes, we all know when it will arrive!  BUT I am wondering if I even need the gynie.  I went to a supposedly top endo about 6 years ago after the birth of my baby (now 6) and after hundreds of dollars, arapax and subsequent FURTHER weight gain (yeah thanks ...) he declared I was one of those women who put weight on during pregnancy but can't lose it [read "you're a lard-@ss"]. 

Now we are doing some personal research (again) and have found Cytomel.  And OMG - you guys are all singing my song!  I need some of this.  I'm in New Zealand so our prescribing is different [read "money driven"] but I'm sure that this is the drug for me. 

I also suffer low basal temperature, my T4 (I think? one of those readings anyway that supposedly measures from 0.4 - 4.0 reads 0.4 (any lower and "they" say my thyroid would be overactive) and things are out of whack.  I get really tired easily, ache alot, get depressed for no real reason, perk up upon eating sometimes (depending upon what I eat) and cannot lose weight for love nor money.  I have just lost 5kg with WW but again, plateau city.  Ye-har.  I horse ride, walk about 7km a day, have a family, go to the gym, but fat loves me - and mostly mid-section and bust.  My lower arms aren't too bad and my legs aren't too bad.  But the rest.  Aarrrgggh.  Does this sound familiar to any of you?


I asked a doctor at one stage for something like Thyroxine and he said, well, if that's wrong it will make your thyroid OVER active and the result will be you will be skinny and lethargic.  I'm like well, I'm FAT and LETHARGIC, want to be THIN, so what' will be wrong with being THIN and LETHARGIC if I'm THIN???? I'll still be lethargic LOL - he didn't see the funny side and yes, most of my doctors have been over 40 haha.  Oh and MALE.  They do not understand how frustrating it can be to bloat and all that we get as women. 

Please feel free to email me if you like. 


And hello, from the bottom of the world!! :D

 

For me, cytomel is the best thing that has ever happened to me. It's worked WONDERS. (although it has not helped me lose weight--which I find very Odd. November will be one year I've been taking it).

Original Post by melbo18:

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!


#31  
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I have all those same symptoms, dr after dr. Doing my own research and found that my T3 may be too low. recent labs dr said normal, I got a copy and my T3 was IN FACT low! I practically screamed at him that I couldn't stand this anymore. I lose so much hair I'm surprised I'm not bald.  About 9 months ago I tried Armour Thyroid...YIKES gained 20 pounds in 4 weeks! stopped that quick and went back to 175mcg Levothyroxine. dr said too high, dropped me to 150. then too high, (accroding to TSH ONLY), dropped me to 125. meanwhile feeling worse and worse. Finally begged him to do TSH, T3, & T4. It was years ago explained to me you want TSH all the way to the left lower end of the scale, with your T3 and T4 at the higher end of the scale, all w/out going over. My dr said I was nuts "who told you that" well, my son, 14 yrs old, born w/out a thyroid, me 7 years w/out one, radiated for Hashimoto's (they "think")...Anyway, I'm not entirely stupid. So today screamed at him, said give me T3, he said there is no such thing....ha...then, when he realizes I'm not stupid gives me cytomel. so after reading all this I am PRAYING that this does something. I'm the fattest I've been ever. I weigh 40 pounds MORE than when I was 9 months pregnant...my youngest is turning 9 in December! its awful when people ask you "when are you due"? uh....9 years ago?? Well I will check back periodically...let you know how its working...or...not working...thanks for the hopeful info!

#32  
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I was on synthroid (different dosages) for over 20 years.  My dosage would change everytime I got a physican and blood test.  Finally because my hubby is diabetic we met an indo (older) who also teaches at our state training hosp.  He agreed to take me on as a patient also.  When he prescribed me something new or changed my meds he did a blood test in 10 to 12 weeks. Cytomel started at 10mcg soon we discovered I needed 20mcg both morning and night to maintain the correct blood levels.  He told me the numbers given as guide lines were too low for most people.  He also told me not to use any generic for any thyroid med.  I have now been on the dose of 20 mcg morning and 20 mcg evening (40mcg per day) for a year and 6 months.  I get checked every 6 months for thyroid and once a year for all the other stuff like kidney, liver glucose level ect.  My hair loss is lots less and my weight has stabelized.  I had lost 30 lbs before going on the cytomel and haven't gained any back.

Okay, I have a question. I just started taking .25 of Synthroid and my symptoms have gotten worse.  I've had issues with my TSH being just a little too high for a really long time, as long as I can remember but, now the symptoms are worse.  Is this normal?  I had heard that what sometimes happens it that my own thyroid stops making the hormone because I am taking it synthetically and that sometimes your T3 can get really low as a result..does that sound right?  If this is so, I want to ask my Doc about Cytomel, but it sounds like such a hassel just to get on it.  I just thought all my symptoms would get better.  I know I am on a low dose, but this is crazy.  I have 5 children and I can't afford to be worse.  I sat right here looking at a picture of my daughter with her tinkerbell back pack and for the life of me could not recall the backpack or what I did with it.  I can't remember the names of things or the words I want to use.  I know they are there, but they just don't come to mind.  I am fairly education and went to college so, it's not like I have a limited vocabulary.  The brain fog and forgetfulness is horrible.  SO, I guess my question is..what is the problem with Cytomel and why do doctor's not want to give this medication? 

Oh, and to the lady in New Zealand..I used to live in New Zealand and found that they actually were more liberal with prescribing things than in America..I think due to the FDA regulations here.  At least that was how it was explained to me!  Good luck.

#34  
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This is long, but please read.

I have been dealing with Thyroid issues for years(Hypo).  I didn't get diagnosed until about 12 years ago.  I went on Armour Thyroid and started doing much better and was O.K. for a few years.  I started having serious problems after about 5 years and could not get my doctor to listen or change my dosage.  My normal counts looked within range on the standard Thyroid tests.  Which by the way, I have been told by two doctors now, that those test scales are old & out of date. Any doctor who is just looking at that and not listening to what your body is doing is doing you an injustice.  I was told to get a new doctor.  I have gone through 3 doctors determined to find one that would really listen to me and find out what was wrong. One doctor changed me off my Armour T. & that was a huge mistake for me. I had fought off 30 pds. & she put me on Synthroid and I begin to gain right away and was just getting worse with my pain. Went to the next doctor, he put me back on the Armour(two doctors say it is the better product out there for the Thyroid) and raised my dosage. It helped a little but was going no where  Got the same answer maybe you have Fibromialgia too. Pat answer when they don't know what is going on with you. Thankfully I did find a doctor who would listen and he found that my body was blocking the T3 going through the natural process.  He lowered my Armour Thyroid dosage and put me on Cytomel too. Cytomel goes straight into your system.  Just let me tell you what a miracle this has been for me.  AND please don't give up on the Cytomel too quickly. If you have been having servere problems it will take longer.  I am at 6 months on my Cytomel and it has changed my life!!!!

Symptoms I was having, not sleeping well, even on nights that I did sleep I woke up totally exhausted, no energy. My body hurt all over!!! joints, muscles, strange streaking pains in my arms, legs & head.  I looked like a 90 year old trying to get around.  I would have to take breaks just to get ready. Muscles tighting up across my neck & shoulders.  No energy at all, I would barely make it through my day (I have a desk job) and come home and sit or lay on the couch totally done.  Sometime I could barely move.  Strange dry spots would ramdonly come up on my skin. I was getting worse and worse.  I was so depresssed about my condition and needless to say my husband was so worried about me. I'm a happy & very energic person normally and I have a high pain tolerance. But this stuff was getting to me.

We are still working on my dosage, but right now I am on 45MG twice a day of my Armour Thyroid & 25 MCG a day of the Cytomel.  While I think I need my Cytomel raised a little more, my life has changed.  I wake up rested, I can get out of bed without pain, no more wierd streaking pains, my muscles don't hurt to the touch.  My energy level is soooo much better.  I actually can clean my house and not suffer for a week afterward. No more of what I called crashes. By that I mean I could be feeling a little better and do a few things and then I would crash and have sometimes a week of awful pain, plus no energy.

I pray that everyone out there get the relief they need for their Hypo thyroid like I have. If your doctor is not listening to you, move on.  You have to be an advocate for yourself.  Stay with it and get the answers you need.  Don't let a doctor put you off. That is what I did for too many years and I think it made my condition much worse.

Hang in there & boy do I understand!

 

 

Please tell me how you are doing with your hair loss now.  I am really concerned about my thinning hairline.  I have been on Cytomel for 1 month and am hoping to see some new growth soon!

#36  
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Where did you find time released Cytomel. I have been trying to get it and can't it anywhere. I am on regular Cytomel now.

#37  
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Where did you find time released Cytomel. I have been trying to get it and can't it anywhere. I am on regular Cytomel now.

hi..in my case i have a hyperthyhroid..as prescribed by my doctor, im taking NEOMERCAZOLE sometimes 5mg/10mg every 3 mos. i go to my doctor for a TSH 3 and TSH4 for how 3 to 4 years few of my blood test is normal...my doctor suggests to take a RAI radio active iodine ...i think... its a lazer to remove my thryoid...inside my neck... then for two weeks after the said RAI its either im in the hospital or my room as long as i have no visitors especially children..due to radio active. so after that still..my blood will be monitored because my doctor said that ...this time i will have a hypothyroid... so is this really curable?

 

when i read your message...id like to share my problem... by the way my left eye is swallen... supposed to be it should be the same eye left and right to be swallen due to my hyperthyroidism... but as per my doctor...some patients have the same case like me... im really sad for my eye...that is why i always smile for the people not to recognize my eye problem....when im angry...my body is shaking...somehow related to my thyroid..

 

STRESS is the cause of our sickness... its so hard not to be stress all the time...i tried exercising....walking...etc...still my weight never changed...as per my doctor...its either im fat or thin...sadly im fat...overweight i guess....and chubby...

thank you for sharing your thoughts

God bless

roed
Feb 26 2009 23:50
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#39  
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Please get yourself very informed before you do Radiated Iodine (RAI). I did it and I regret it. It is not a lazer? It is a pill that contains radiated iodine. And yes you will be Hypothyroid after which is another form of Hell. I too have Graves Disease of the eyes. You need to also see an Oculoplastic or Opthamologist surgeon. 

These are eye doctors that specialize in these types of eye problems. I did need 4 eye lid surgeries but my eyes are much better. No pain or bulging anymore. But it seems you have Graves Disease which will make you Hyperthyroid just like I was. Don't rush into anything except getting a good Endorinologist(a doctor that specializes in gland problems, thyroid, diabetes etc.). Hope this helps a little.

I had the RAI back in 2001 when I was only 21 years old.  Since then, it has been hell with my weight and my mood.  Both of them are continously on a roller coaster.  I read a few years ago that Japan was testing a new method for hypothyroid patients, and it was successful so far; however, I have not been able to find anymore information about it.  They transplanted live thyroid tissue to the forearm muscle in patients, and it started producing hormones.  I feel like the US would never bring such technologies here because they'd lose so much money from freakin Synthroid.  Have you found anything that works weight wise.  I've been on this site for about a year, but I've slacked a lot since, so now I'm determined to stick with it this time.  I just get frustrated because it always takes me so long to see results, and then I feel like I blink my eye and the weight comes right back!

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