This website is dedicated to the millions of thyroid patients who are being ignored and left to suffer unnecessarily, and to healthcare practitioners, who want to better serve those patients.

Has Your Get Up and Go Got Up and Gone?

Are you tired of hearing that “nothing else can be done for you?” Are you tired of hearing “you are depressed and would feel better if you lost weight”? Are you tired of getting rushed in and out of your doctor’s surgery…each visit, walking out with a new prescription for one of your many symptoms and being given NO ANSWERS. Your medication dose increases/decreases…but you continue to suffer the effects of low thyroid function – but nobody listens?

So what’s important when it comes to diagnosing thyroid problems? Is it the symptoms of thyroid problems, family history, physical presentation, or should more or less weight be given to the serum thyroid function tests, i.e. TSH, fT3, fT4?

Before answering, let’s look at the patients’ and the doctors’ points of view.

In order for a patient to tell their doctor about their symptoms of thyroid problems, the doctor needs to spend time with them, as well as listen to their story.

But many doctors do neither, so it can’t be very important, right?

Patients may subconsciously be persuaded to feel that maybe it isn’t that important and take the doctor’s word or their actions as reasonable – and after all, doctor knows best – doesn’t s/he?

What about the doctors? They listen to patient’s problems all day long. Some problems are real, some are not and some are unfathomable. They don’t have time to sort out what’s real and what’s not, so, the best way is to rely solely on laboratory testing (because lab test never lie, right?).

So doctor and patient accept that the laboratory tests are the way to go.

 Wrong!

This has huge implications for those with symptoms of thyroid problems. A huge problem of under-diagnosis exists for such patients when a doctor relies on TSH as the only marker for thyroid dysfunction. Truth be told, this test is very inaccurate and serves better as a secondary marker for the diagnosis of thyroid problems.

Far superior ways to assess thyroid problems are:

  • symptoms of thyroid disease
  • signs of thyroid disease
  • family history of thyroid or autoimmune disease (especially your mother)
  • low basal temperature upon waking
  • Iodine deficiency So here’s the solution: Thyroid Patient Advocacy feels the time is long overdue for the medical profession to change their current way of thinking and are campaigning to get the current protocol regarding the diagnosis and treatment of hypothyroidism amended. In TPA’s efforts, all endocrinologists and GP’s are being urged…2. To use the following laboratory tests as a guide in the assessment and treatment of those with symptoms of hypothyroidism: TSH, free T4, free T3, TPO antibodies and Tg Antibodies. 4. To listen and give more credence to patients’ subjective reports of symptom continuance or resolution, rather than make laboratory results the sole guide in dosing. Moreover, TPA advocates that doctors should have freedom of choice in prescribing T4-alone, combination of T4/T3, T3-alone or natural thyroid extract.
  • To start combined treatment at a safe low dose of T4/T3 synthetic combination, or, if thyroid extract is prescribed, doctors should familiarise themselves with the equivalence of this medication compared with thyroxine and begin treatment on an appropriate safe dose, adjusting the dose according to the patient’s clinical needs every few weeks.
  • To screen patients with thyroid deficiency for low adrenal reserve, a condition that may be more common than generally expected. Patients with weak adrenals may have difficulty tolerating the dose of thyroid hormone they need, and may experience apparent “hyperthyroid” symptoms, even at low insufficient doses. In other patients with low adrenal reserve, the problem may be the opposite: the patient may remain hypothyroid even at higher doses of thyroid hormones. Thyroid hormones cannot normally be used by the cells and may instead build up too high in the blood, leading both doctor and patient to believe that a particular dose is too high and that the treatment doesn’t work. The solution to both problems is treatment of the low cortisol condition, prior to the thyroid treatment, or simultaneously.
  • Once the diagnosis is made, it is again the symptoms of thyroid disease and physical presentation that are the ultimate markers of improvement. Laboratory tests are still unreliable on their own, and should serve as secondary markers (but be assured, thyroid function tests do have a purpose).

See the ‘TPA Register of Counterexamples to T4-only therapy’.

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Previous comments

I have just joined and would like to know where I can get Natural Desiccated Thyroid? I have a private GP so he would probably be willing to give me a prescription but what chemist can I take it to? I live in North London. I have been on Thyroxine since I was 20 (now 69) and now feel as though I am running on empty and overweight……

Vivien 2.,

I have just joined and would like to know where I can get either WP Thyroid or Nature-throd from. I have an understanding GP who is willing to give me a prescription but where can I get it from in Argyll Scotland. I am 68 and have been on Thyroxine for 30 odd years and feel I would like to be able to have a productive life for a while before I die

dougaanna,

Have Graves’ disease over four years treated with RAI now on levothyroxine 125mcgs feel constantly fatigued weight gain aches and pains . Hot flushes etc.
Live in Wiltshire area anyone know where I could get a sympathetic GP to prescribe natural thyroxine as would try anything to improve my QOL . Is it safe to buy natural thyroxine on line as I am desperate.
Kind regards annie

Anie,

Hello Anne
I have found a naturopath in Cheddar that prescribes NDT , please private message me

Paula ewins,

Hi I have just joined. The reason is because I’m getting very frustrated with how I’m feeling eg: sore, lack of concentration, tired all the time, forgetting things, bad sleep pattern, lack of feeling for anything. I have been like this for years and I need help. The doctors keep telling me the usual and giving me antidepressants……not helping! My husband wants his happy bouncy wife back, I want to be that person again. Where do I start and how.
Thank you chipmonk

Chipmonk,

GP has said that my blood test results are normal and advised me to search the internet for information. Still feeling ill with fatigue, weight gain, muscle aches and cold intolerance.
Where can I go for answers

Barbara Mellor,

Hi there,
I have hypothyroidism, after having a total thyroidectemy. I had been taking the brand eltroxin but that was changed to the generic levothyroxine and havent been feeling well.
Has anyone else experienced this?

mary123,