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i am a 53 year old woman and have just this week been diagnosed with hypothyroidism. Looking back, I realise that many symptoms that I have put down to my age or 'just how I am' were now due to the condition. I finally went to the doctor as for the last couple years my weight has been gradually increasing, no matter how hard I have tried to sort it. I do wonder how long I have had this, as even in my late 20's I had M.E and have now read of a connection. I am also someone who for most of my life, has always felt more tired than most people, and needed to plan enough 'rest time' around any social events. I have read I may feel worse before I feel better, although some say they felt better very quickly - please let me know your experiences x

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  • Posted

    I fully identify with you. Now in my mid 70s I am probably the best I have ever been for my age despite having had my gallbladder removed almost 3 months ago. Like you I never had enough energy in my 20s to do a social work job and had a couple of breakdowns. I never felt happy that they were nervous breakdowns because it was as if despite enjoying my job I felt as if the energy had just gone all of a sudden. I coped, having a lot of time off, no blood test was available then, by getting married, having a couple of children and not going out to work. In my 30s and 40s I provided Bed and Breakfast andvevening meals for visitors and managed reasonably okay because I could get my energy back over the winter. In my 50s things were getting worse and I had a bllood test which showed that I was hypothyroid and. I started on a low dose of medication which was gradually increased till in my early 60s I again found I was doing frightful energy dives with cracking headaches. I felt that the levothyroxine alone wasn't doing the business for me. I got a referral to an endocrinologist who prescribed T3 along with the T4 and I have now been on that for almost 10 years. I still have slight lows but I think I am now living as well as it can get for me. Everyone is different, my husband also is hypothyroid and copes well with just the levothyroxine, slightly more than I take but without the small extra dose of T3. The increase in weight was also something which came on over the earlier years and loosing weight was nearly impossible. I still struggle to keep I off but it is not so much of an issue now. Good luck. Maggie
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  • Posted

    Hi Kara,

    Glad you have finally been diagnosed. It's an alleluia moment when it finally happens. I'm 40 and was diagnosed about 18 months ago. My doctor started me off on 50 mg at first, then after 3 months up to 100mg then a further 25mg so 125mg altogether at the moment. Id say it's only been in the past six months that I felt relatively better and have a lot more energy. I'd say I'm 80% better but still have my days. Hair is still very thin, skin is dry, weight still up, I'm very forgetful and still have bouts of tiredness but life is definitely so much more improved, I can clean, cook, and look after my children, run, walk, all without feeling chronically exhausted. I feel blessed that have my life back albeit looking a little worse for wear. You will feel better in time but it takes time to get levels right and how you feel should be communicated to a doctor that listens and acts on what you say. Good luck.

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  • Posted

    Hi Kara,and all who have replied to you.Out of interest,do you all live in the UK? I'm 50,female,live in the UK,and have a number of problems,including hypothyroidism,with symptoms the same as you are all describing.As my symptoms have worsened,I've believed them to be thyroid related.However,having other problems means I confuse doctors.I'm unable to be tested for T3 in my area,but personally feel it's that bit if T3 I need.My GP is unable to prescribe it either.Consequently,I have to see another Endo to dissect all my symptoms and health issues.
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    • Posted

      Yes I'm in the Uk in England. I've been tested for t3 and t4 but my doctor just focuses on the T4 for some reason. I'm still not 100% to maybe that's due to a lack of T3. I will bring this up next time. I would like to see an Endeo as think the doctors can do only so much. Would be interested to find out more about T3.
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    • Posted

      I actually live in Scotland and my GP referred me to the endocrinologist Dr Toft at the Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh. GP s don't like prescribing anything other than thyroxine as far as I know. He has written a very good booklet available via Amazon in the BMA understanding series, entitled Understanding Thyroid problems. It is worth buying as often GPs don't believe that one can not be fully treated if blood tests come back within the normal range. Maggie
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    • Posted

      Thanks Maggie, I will definitely be reading that. Please let us know how you get on with the Endo be really interesting to know .
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    • Posted

      I'll look that up too,Maggie.It's worth understanding what you have,so you can discuss it better with doctors.I'm on 200 mcg Levothyroxine,and feel it doesn't suit me completely,not being helped by having to take about 10 medications in total.On this site,there's a discussion on 'Unacceptable side effects of Levothyroxine',where many seem to feel the same as me.Gill
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    • Posted

      I was on 200mcg thyroxine but have been able to reduce it by 25mcg since I started taking it on an empty stomach at least 30 minutes before breakfast. Advice now is to leave at least 2 hours (some say 4 hours) before iron or calcium medication as these affect the absorbtion of thyroxine. I'm not medically qualified but I interpreted this as being 'it doesn't get used by your body so it stays in your bloodstream' - net result is underactive symptoms but blood results that suggest you are overactive.
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  • Posted

    Hi Kara i am 55 and just started on the levo meds 3 months ago, i fealt better almost straight away, however I am now starting to feel tired again memory problems and brain fug are coming back.

    I am on a very low dose and am back for blood tests in June so hopefully I will get a higher dose.

    Hope they work quickly for you.

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    • Posted

      As you are getting symptoms of being underactive again, don't wait until the blood test in June before getting another one (though you do need to wait 6-8 weeks since the last time you changed your thyroxin dose for the blood test to pick up the changes). Go back to your doctor and request an earlier blood test.
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  • Posted

    Thanks all for your messages x The hardest thing for me is the weight gain...I have always been a slim adult (size 10) so struggling to get into things now and feeling 'blown up' is a lot for me to deal with. Fingers crossed that it soon starts to shift!
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  • Posted

    I am 54. I was diagnosed in my mid 20's.  I always was tired & gained weight fast. When I was tested my TSH level was 0.  Doctor immediately put me on meds. From what I know as a RN, our thyroids in women go through changes in puberty and young adult hood and after preganancy. We now know and test women for this. You may have had it from young adulthood or even teenage years.  It does take time to develop and symptoms are often mistaken for another situation or like you said aging.  You will feel more normal as your level is taken back to normal. Some people get by on a small amount of thyroid and others need much much more. Your level has to be checked often. Watch your carbs as we who have this don't burn calories as fast as others. I hope this helps.
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  • Posted

    Hi kara,

    One thing I would add to other posts is: that as you are getting symptoms of being underactive again, don't wait until the blood test in June before getting another one (though you do need to wait 6-8 weeks since the last time you changed your thyroxin dose for the blood test to pick up the changes). Go back to your doctor and request an earlier blood test.

    I've now had hypothyroidism for so many years that my doctor gives me the blood test form and is happy for me to go to the hospital for a blood test whenever I feel I need one. One other thing to bear in mind, thyroid levels don't stay static for some people. For me, I need to increase my thyroxin dose in the winter and reduce it in the summer. My doctor has put this down to me having S.A.D. (seasonal affective disorder).

    Hope you feel better soon.

    Barbara

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    • Posted

      Thank you Barbara. Interesting you should mention S.A.D. as I have suffered that for many years too but have always dealt with it myself. At least now I know it's possible that I may also need a different dose in winter.

      t

      Thanks again,

      Kara

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    • Posted

      You're welcome. Another thing to watch out for is developing allergies and intolerances. After 16 years on thyroxin, aged 45, I developed an allergy to penicillin. Before that, I became allergic to oranges. Since then I've developed other intolerances (which can't be picked up with blood tests, or skin prick tests). In 2013 I developed a histamine intolerance. Six months ago I developed a milk intolerance (symptoms are: excema and hives, which go away if i exclude milk and products containing milk). So be aware that this can happen.
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