Is this dificiency because of radio active iodine treatment.

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Hello can somebody tell me if they know if vitamin D deficiency can be caused by radio active iodine treatment. I have had an overactive thyroid for 5 years,this was treated with RAI in July2015. About 2 months after treatment i started suffering with aching muscles and bone pain.this got worse over the coming months. I kept mentioning it to my GP and also my thyroid consultant who was at the time bringing my TSH down from 98 to the range it needed to be 2.5. Last month the pain in my spine was really bad and i had no strength in my back or legs. I basically hurt all over. He tested my vitamin D and it was 21. Since then i have been on 40,000 once a week for 8 weeks. I have taken 4 weeks worth so far and can feel a slight improvement. I have to go back as i think i will need a maintainence dose. I am just wondering if this has anything to do with the killing off of my thyroid gland. I just wish that somebody had listened to me when i said i was in constant pain. And tested sooner.

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  • Posted

    I don't think that vit D deficiency can be CAUSED by RAI - but if it is Graves disease you have, that is an autoimmune disorder and autoimmune disorders are often associated with vit D deficiency. That doesn't necessarily mean one is the cause of the other, just that they go together.

    However - you might find this article interesting:

    Low vitamin D status may increase risk for failure of Graves’ disease treatment:

    "A new study published in the Journal of Endocrinological Investigation suggests that vitamin D status below 20 ng/ml may be an independent risk factor for predicting failure of radioiodine therapy among patients with Graves’ disease."

    I'll send you the direct link by pm so it won't go for moderation so you can read it.

    Did they have any difficulty getting the RAI to work for you? This article may be describing the reason if that was the case.

    Vit D deficiency is still a bit under the radar - older healthcare workers tend to still be working on "this is in the range found in the normal population so it's OK" instead of "is the range found in normal people the OPTIMUM level".  Which it isn't! And when we as patients ask about it we get the rolled eyes and "you've been reading DrGoogle".

    There are several reasons for low vit D - and modern life figures high on the list. We don't go out as much into the midday sun, if we do we are told to use sunscreen or cover up with shirts and hats - and when we live further north than northern Italy the sun is only strong enough in the summer between May and September to make vit D in the skin. I live in northern Italy - and about 80% of our population is vit D deficient so we are told to take at least 2000 IU daily during the winter. Even if you do spend a lot if time in the sun that is no guarantee you are producing vit D - as we age the "skin factory" slows down and becomes very inefficient. Even at 20 my daughter produced next to no vit D - her blood level was 11!  

    You cannot get vit D from even a very healthy diet - there are very few foods you find it in and you  would have to eat half a pound of oily fish a day or a 17 egg omelette which really isn't very practical is it! So - supplements it is! And even then - some people don't absorb it from the gut!

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply. I do have graves disease and the RAI didnt work straight away,as they expect.the trouble was because it didnt work with in 6 weeks they put me back on carbimazole. It started to work about 3 months after taking it. Trouble was by then i was very underactive. It was at this time that the bone pain really started.
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    • Posted

      Yes - it sounds as if it could have been the low vit D that caused the problem with the RAI. I wonder if your doctors have come across the link. I'd put it in the next post as you'll have seen - you don't have a little silver envelope to click on to send a private message. 

      You could find it yourself in the meantime if you searched for the title I gave:

      Low vitamin D status may increase risk for failure of Graves’ disease treatment

      Hope you feel much better soon

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    • Posted

      Thank you. I will have a look for it. Its good to know about these things. I have been complaining to both my doctor and consultant about the pain,but i dont think they realise just how bad its been,because they have both said i will get muscle aches with hypothyroidism. But this has been different especially when i try to stand from sitting.
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    • Posted

      I wonder - if it doesn't improve a lot after the full course of vit D and your blood level is at an acceptable level, ask them about the possibility of something called polymyalgia rheumatica. It and vit D deficiency are very similar and vit D deficiency is one of the things that should be ruled out. One of the really really characteristic things is being unable to stand from sitting - plus muscle aches and stiffness in shoulders/hips and fatigue.

      There are other things too but that is one to start with.

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    • Posted

      Thank you. I will ask,because what you have described is exactly how i am. No strength in rising from a chair, and very painful. Thanks for your help.
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