Hypothyroidism Support Group

Hypothyroidism is the disease state caused by insufficient production of thyrohormone by the thyroid gland. There are several distinct causes for chronic hypothyroidism, the most common being Hashimoto's thyroiditis and hypothyroidism following radioiodine therapy for hyperthyroidism. Advanced hypothyroidism may cause severe complications, the most serious one of which is myxedema.

1 Online

Hypo Symptoms

Hello


I have nevered research any medical topics online but I have to search out knowleagable people who are living with this illness for question,my husband was diagnosedwith hypothyroidism 5 weeks ago and was put on 0.05mg of levothyroxine, his doctor said he have to start at a small dose take another blood test in 6 weeks and maybe increase. My husband was first diagnosed as depressed,which I understand anyone can be depressed but then came confusion so his doctor order a ct scan of his head to look for tumors,cancer,strokes or signs of dementia but nothing was found so we are back to the hypothyrodism, he now suffersfrom severe constipation and stay cold,he have not exprienced any weight gain and he is bald already so no hair loss. He is 62 years old diabetic and a diaylsis patient which he has been doing very well with his treatment. He will now sleep all night and all day if I dont make him get up. I have had to take a leave of absence from work to help care for him because he seem so confused, I sit up every night crying not knowing what to do to help him, his primary doctor said these are symptoms of hypothyroid and to be patient it will get better, his diabetes doctor and kidney doctor said these are not symptoms and hypothroid does not make you confused but they said it could be from so many different things and they have ruled out the most common causes,his TSH is 9.94 which they say is very mild. Can anyone tell me if they have ever exprienced any kind of confusion or memory problems, any help will be gladly appreciated.

Replies

middleoftheroad
middleoftheroad

Seems to be, when my own Hashimoto's diagnosis came in correctly finally in 2014, I was hospitalized for a month and long term care until was under control for a few months after. The memory loss and lethargic/no energy are common symptoms. When Hashimoto's is in full swing, there are things called antibodies which are causing the immune system to malfunction on top of the low thyroid. When that happened to me, I spent nearly a year on steroid pill called Prednisone to reduce the inflammation. With that came a whole host of bad symptoms like; irritability, sleeplessness, restlessness, SHORT patience and the typical roid rage associated with steroids.. At my request, the endocrinologist I'd been seeing had me seeing a neurologist who was the one who prescribed the prednisone. It was not a good time I'll tell you.
What your husband has going for him is a LOVING wife who will be there for him. Unfortunately, due to my condition my marriage did not survive as the in sickness and in health was not taken seriously by my what I refer to now solely as my children's mother. Interestingly enough, hypothyroidism and Hashimoto's specifically is one that targets women supposedly more than men and that is ONLY in my layman opinion is because men go undiagnosed more being we don't have the same type of health care nor take our health as serious as women do due to the other things women experience. There are actually women who are misdiagnosed as menopausal as I've read when in fact is their thyroids in some cases. That is my generalization.
Back to your husband. I've posted a handful of things in this group over time which have helped me get to where I am. Currently, I am not on any medication. Not even the thyroid hormone for just two weeks and staying diligent so I don't fall back to where I was. This is due to insurance issues and the last appt. I had with my endocrinologist referred me to a general practitioner who would not see me due to my health insurance problem based on my former employer purporting I am not covered...
STRESS REDUCTION is the biggest element to get under control. It is not that he is a jerk, is more when you think of the nervous system getting out of whack, it causes mayhem to one's emotions on top of their foggy memory and restlessness on top of sleeplessness and/or even times when he cannot function and NEEDS a nap..

My response I hope is not scaring you. He CAN and will get better. He needs to change literally EVERYTHING. If he drinks alcohol and/or smokes he should find a manner to stop naturally without supplements for that. If he is on mood enhancers, he should get tapered off them ASAP.
If his diet stinks, he should give up beyond the alcohol; SUGAR, processed foods, dairy, SOY of EVERY kind whether processed or whole, and, follow a regimented diet of whole, natural, organic fruits and vegetables, as MUCH fish as he can and drop the red meat depending on who you talk to they will say yes or no. I am mentioning solely what has been helpful for me. As well, if he cannot work out due to muscle cramping like I used to have, I started with walking a block, then two, then miles on miles. I also got into yoga. I learned on my own from some books I read, took a few classes & bought a dvd. There are specific yoga poses which can help alleviate symptoms and open up his nervous system some. I do some stretches each day and even dry brush now. (there is a thing called dry brushing. Google dry brushing and it'll be helpful. Us men specifically not being used to things like SELF CARE for example, need to take it full on. We cannot care for another until we care for ourselves. You being a loving, caring spouse can do what you can to encourage him. Please don't get frustrated with him or impatient. I have literally lost many friends and even relatives as well as business associates/partners and former employers I don't talk to any more due to my own frustrations partially with the way they interacted with me not taking my condition serious and thinking I was just a flat out jerk. Not the case an iota. As well, last night for example, I had dinner with the woman who birthed me and tried to explain to her about the manner in which we communicate and she did everything she could to cut me off and make it into an argument where I kept circling back around being I know she is not going to change I had to be the one to do so. My patience now is QUITE extensive, my one time beating myself up about my lost friends and relatives I don't talk to any more is their issue, not mine. I've made some new friends and they understand what I deal with so we are very cordial and loving towards one another in our short couple years of friendships. If your husband has time (which he should), turn OFF the television and distractions, get the books related to thyroid management and healing I mentioned in another post or google books on thyroid and you'll come up with your own list.
This is a LOT of information I know and will appear overwhelming to him some but thank goodness of his loving, caring wife to try and help him get to the root cause of his symptoms and get better.

Well wishes for him and good thoughts for you to stay patient in this trying time for his health as well as testing your relationship but ultimately WILL make it stronger based on your desire to help him get well. And some prayers never hurt either whether you're religious or spiritual, reaching out to your Higher power will ultimately bring some resolve also. Last, psychiatric and/or counseling (without mood enhancers) will help both of you also and, chiropractic care is a must as well as massages.

I don't want to close on this response with any negativity given now, it is passed. The worst is behind me. I've lost sixty lbs. I gained physically making it easy to manage my symptoms better with the diet and exercise I'm doing on top of the most important element (PROPER REST).

I tried best I could to repair the relationships which mattered most to me and the others of those who choose to forego seeing the changed me is their issue now not mine. I've spent time in a friendly, platonic relationship with a woman I met a church years back and we've become friendlier these last cpl years and just having some form of adult companionship with someone who is compassionate and understanding has been good also. These are my situations of course not your husbands but staying patient and understanding for him will be good for you both as well help him recover faster.

Take a look at some of the posts about books written by endocrinologists and patients of thyroid issues on proper; diet & nutrition, avoidance, exercising, etc. is all worthwhile to have him soak all the knowledge he can to diminish his symptoms first and ultimately, put his condition in remission or state of dormancy like I am in today. About three years to get where I am today in total from my first stint in a hospital for a few months in late spring & summer a few years back.

Best to you both.
DizzyGal
DizzyGal

You asked specifically about confusion & if that is part of hypothyroidism. Doctors don't all agree about the severity of that symptom & it's effects, but having had this illness for more than a decade, & finally diagnosed 4 years ago, I can say "brain fog" & outright confusion were ongoing scary symptoms for me until thyroid replacement medication helped. Having just been diagnosed only 5 weeks ago, your husband is going to need a lot of time to see a great deal of improvement. In the meantime he will continue to experience symptoms and may for awhile even after the medicine brings his numbers back inline. Because he is the patient and you're his wife, I would educate yourself about this illness as much as possible. If he is too depressed to read, get the books & read on his behalf and share what you learn with him, & ask him about what symptoms bother him the most. Diet will have a profound effect on his improvement, but again it takes time. With diabetes, you probably already understand how foods affect him, Carbs create sugar & causes blood glucose spikes high & lows. The thyroid is affected by food too, in this case causing symptoms and fatigue. Think of it like toxic things he has been putting in his body, to reverse it, you must put better foods in, & eliminate the trigger foods. I totally stopped eating anything with soy, most nuts (because a lot of them affect my thyroid), limited gluten (i'm not gluten free yet but working on it), sugar is bad (really does affect inflammation - I get a lot of joint pain when I cheat in this area), caffeine affects me as well & will make my symptoms flare. I follow mostly the "Grain Brain" diet. Wheat & most whole grains are a big "no-no" for me. Even shows up in my ability to speak properly & affects my brain immediately after consuming a lot of it. I can't concentrate, repeat myself a lot, & can't find correct words during normal conversation. Dr. doesn't always agree with me but when I stick to my diet, I don't have this issues & don't experience the same level of confusion or frustration trying to communicate normally. It was a slow progression for me to make all the changes in lifestyle to improve my health, & having an endocrinologist that will test properly & work with you to reduce your symptoms is really key. If you don't like one, try another doctor until you find one who listens and spends the time to really help him. I'm on my 3rd doctor now, & hoping I will like the results in time with this doctor. Life stressors also will impact his health, I experienced a lot of family loss consecutively in 3 years and my health as far as my thyroid was really bad then. It's taking a hit again right now, my son graduated from high school, my daughter just got married, my other son was in a severe car accident, and I am moving into a new home in 1 month. These life changes have impacted my health and my thyroid has taken a strong hit because of it. My numbers are really bad again, and doctors are changing my medicine accordingly. It doesn't surprise me. My symptoms often tell me, when I need to see my doctor. I know it's frustrating that progress if any is slow, but it's just the way this disease is. It's an auto-immune illness and should be thought of that way. Best advice, read, read, & read some more & make changes slowly and give them time to work. Best of luck.
Simpson09
Simpson09

Thank you so much your information it helped a lot I am working hard to educate us both about this disorder its just sometimes the doctors act like we are making up symptoms and that is so frustrating, who would want to go through this, thank you and good luck
dawnrose0004
dawnrose0004

Hi,

Sorry your husband is going through this. He most definitely has hypothyroidism. A TSH of 9.9 is not mild. Healthy people have a TSH of around 1. It was good to start your husband on a small dose of Levo. You want to take a small dose and make increases very slowly. And waiting 6 weeks to retest is also correct. If you look up symptoms of hypothyroidism, you will find a list as long as your arm. Exhaustion, depression, memory problems are all amongst hypo symptoms. Until he takes the correct dose of medication for him, he will still has hypo symptoms. Please ask your doctor to also run Free T3, Free T4, thyroid antibodies.

Best of luck to you and your husband.
Lone_Wolf
Lone_Wolf

I'm a man who was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. Believe me, a TSH over 9 is not "mild". Mine was over 10 and I was almost completely depleted of energy, had severe depression, and some had crazy thoughts on top of all that. Has the doctor tested his Free T3 and Free T4 levels? They tell a better story than just TSH. Also, has he tried natural desiccated thyroid instead of levothyroxine? My doctor prescribed me the former and it works great on me. My TSH level is at 0.34 now.
Based on what you told us, I would say your husband is still very, very hypothyroid. I'd advise you to get this tended to ASAP, before he suffers even more.
Lone_Wolf
Lone_Wolf

Re: the above post. I should have typed "had some crazy thoughts", not"some had crazy thoughts".
Nina1959
Nina1959

I totally agree that over 9 is not mild at all and it may take some time for the meds to do their work. I also wonder if the dialysis might mess with his med levels? Do they have him taking his thyroid med after his treatment or before? after might be better. Just had someone very special to me exhibit the same kind of symptoms your husband is and he was also on dialysis. They figured out he was being drained of essential minerals and had very low vitamin d and supplements (again, after treatment) helped a bit to keep him going and more upbeat for a while. If there is a chance you can get him to a naturopath or a DO instead of an MD it might help. They look at the whole body. Also, if he isn't seeing an actual endocrinologist, please get him to one and if his diabetes doctor you spoke of is an endocrinologist you may need a new one if they think 9 is mild.
energylost
energylost

Simpsonog, I have a deep compassion for your husband. I have suffered with his exact symptoms so I know how he feels. The symptoms should have been gone with the Levo at this point. I have 2 suggestions that may eradicate his symptoms.

I discovered by accident that by taking the Levo AT BEDTIME, immediately eradicated the symptoms and I got my life back. I was put on another medication because I had phlegm buildup so I accidentally took the Levo, this was 10 p.m. As I swallowed it, I realized what I had done so I didn't panic because taking it at 5 a.m. did NOTHING for me so I decided not to worry and it had been well over 8 hours since I had taken the first dose. I INSTANTLY went to sleep AND stayed asleep ALL NIGHT. I woke up with a great amount of energy. I usually took an hour TO THINK about getting up but I got up instantly. I had a piece of toast, drank 2 sips of my coffee and I was READY TO START MY DAY. Previous to this, it took me 2 (two) hours to think about starting my day. Constipation was immediately gone.

For the next couple of nights (5-7) it kept me up an extra 5 hours so no big deal I had a great amount of energy to do homework. By day 7, I think it was, I instantly went to sleep, no longer keeping me awake an extra 5 hours.

During this time, the body is getting used to the idea of absorbing ALL of the hormone so this is possibly why I was up an extra 5 hours. By taking it at night the body is ABSORBING ALL OF THE HORMONE and is no longer going down the toilet.

I continued to take the Levo at bedtime and had great results. When I got put on Armour, I took that at night so there was no transition, I immediately went to sleep, it didn't keep me up for an extra 5 hours.

There is no need to get permission from the doctor unless it interferes with other medications. Levo can be taken at any part of the day or night as long as a dose is not skipped. I never skipped a dose. I took it that morning at 5 am then again at 10 pm and DIDN'T need another dose till 10 pm the next night so there was really no extra dose taken either. What happened was, I took, what would have been the 5 am dose, I took it at 10 pm on the previous night.

For me, I was put on Armour because the Levo never seemed to touch the depression but the Armour didn't help to eradicate it either. Since the Circadian Rhythm was balanced I felt like a new person and didn't realize I had low short-term memory loss, short-term concentration or none at times, which are also symptoms of ADRENAL FATIGUE so do some research on this and you will find they mimic HYPOthyroid also. I hope this works for your husband.
energylost
energylost

Simpsonog, The other solution for your husband would be to have ALL of his hormones checked, he will have to DEMAND THIS BE DONE. My Endo wouldn't run them so I HAD TO DEMAND IT, therein was the problem. ALL hormones work together, the body works like a symphony.

ALL of my hormone levels were low to almost nothing in the results so I was immediately put on Progesterone & estrogen, testosterone; by taking these I no longer needed Levo or Armour. This solution may help your husband.

I got the hormones from a PHARMACIST, she wanted to treat me because she saw that I was NOT feeling well. SHE explained to me how I was feeling, it was as if she could FEEL how bad I was feeling. I also expected that she was going to put me on ANOTHER medical drug because we are conditioned to expect this. Nope, she put me on some powerful vitamins and Roots. I immediately took them at home and began to feel better. I wasn't sure if this was in my head so when I took them in the a.m. I was still feeling great again. This may be another solution for your husband.

The reason for ALL of the hormone problems for me, was CHRONIC stress. Chronic stress slowly destroys the body, it immediately depletes the B & C vitamins and other nutrients. I felt renewed taking the vitamins. These SUPER strength, SUPER good vitamins are made by Dr. James Wilson, his website also discusses ADRENAL FATIGUE. I've tried other vitamins, but they don't work the same as Dr. Wilson's.

I have been off Levo and Armour for 3 years now with the help of these vitamins. I can cut down on the dose when I'm feeling well. When the "hypothyroid" or Adrenal Fatigue symptoms return, I increase the dose of the vitamins and I begin to feel normal again.

I had 3 doctors at one time helping me. My first visit with the pharmacist was $35 and NEVER NEEDED to go back; she REPAIRED me, I had IMMEDIATE results. This may be another solution also.
energylost
energylost

To improve some of the most common symptoms include: fatigue, depression, sensitivity to cold, muscle cramps, brain fog, poor memory (short-term), shortness of breath, anxiety, I found BREATHING EXERCISES worked IMMEDIATELY.

I performed this exercise all day, or as much as I could remember on the day I discovered this. I had immediate results by the evening and even bigger results by day 3. This simple, inexpensive exercise really, really helps.
For me, I even got rid of Migraine headaches, keeps anxiety from returning and other symptoms. This is something I will never give up, this has become a daily exercise, for me.
This solution may help your husband.

Dr. Andrew Weil-Tutorial 4-7-8
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Wg-UAYGa2A

You may not be able to hold on 7 so try to hold 5 but slowly work up to 7
energylost
energylost

Should You Take Your Thyroid Medication at Night?
Studies Show TSH Levels Lower When Levothyroxine Taken at Bedtime

Every thyroid patient has heard the advice that for best results, we should take our medication first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach, and wait at least 30 minutes to an hour before eating.
(And also, that we should wait for at least three to four hours before taking calcium or iron, which can interfere with thyroid hormone absorption.) I will add, TAKE THESE IN THE A.M.

But two important studies—a study published in the journal Clinical Endocrinology, and a follow-up larger randomized trial reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine—have found that taking the same dose of levothyroxine (i.e., Synthroid) at bedtime, as compared to first thing in the morning, may be better.

The studies were prompted by the observation that some patients had improved thyroid hormone profiles improved after they switched from taking their levothyroxine in the morning, to bedtime.
Clinical Endocrinology reported on a small pilot study, which looked at the impact on thyroid hormone profiles by changing the time levothyroxine was taken from early morning to bedtime. They also evaluated the impact of this change on the circadian rhythm of TSH and thyroid hormones and thyroid hormone metabolism. The study, while small (12 subjects), was fairly conclusive in its findings, which the researchers said were “striking” and which have “important consequences for the millions of patients who take l-thyroxine daily.”

Researchers reported that taking medication at bedtime, rather than the morning, results in “higher thyroid hormone concentrations and lower TSH concentrations.” TSH decreased and Free T4 levels rose in all patients by changing thyroxine ingestion from early morning to bedtime and T3 levels rose in all but one subject.

And TSH decreased irrespective of the starting TSH levels, suggesting better absorption of the thyroid medication when taken in the evening. Interestingly, the researchers found that the circadian TSH rhythm—the typical daily fluctuations of TSH that occur during a 24-hour period—did not vary.

The researchers suggested several explanations for the results:
• Even when waiting for at least 30 minutes to eat, breakfast may be interfering with the intestinal absorption of levothyroxine.
• “Bowel motility is slower at night,” which means that it takes longer for the levothyroxine tablet to transit through the intestinal system, resulting in longer exposure to the intestinal wall, and therefore, better absorption and uptake of the medication.
• The conversion process of T4 to T3 may be more effective in the evening.
The researchers have suggested that given the results of this study, a large double-blinded randomized study was needed to confirm their results.
That study was conducted and the results were reported on in the Archives of Internal Medicine article. The study was a randomized double-blind crossover trial. Ninety patients completed the trial, which involved a 6-month period of taking 1 capsule in the morning and 1 capsule at bedtime, with one capsule active levothyroxine, the other placebo, and a switch at the three-month point. The researchers evaluated thyroid hormone levels, as well as creatinine levels, lipid levels, body mass index, heart rate, and quality of life parameters.

The researchers found that the patients taking nighttime levothyroxine had a drop in TSH of 1.25, a significant change.

The free thyroxine (Free T4) level went up by 0.07 ng/dL, and total triiodothyronine (Total T3) went up by 6.5 ng/dL. According to the researchers, there were no significant changes in the other factors measured.

The researchers concluded that, given the improvement in thyroid hormone levels, physicians should consider prescribing levothyroxine to be taken at bedtime.

What are the Implications for You as a Thyroid Patient?
Taking medication at bedtime instead of in the morning could have major implications for you and many thyroid patients.
• First, it’s easier, as you don’t have to worry about when to eat breakfast.
• Second, it’s easier to avoid medications, supplements, and foods, like calcium, iron, and high-fiber foods that can interfere with thyroid medication absorption.
• Third, coffee drinkers would not have to wait until an hour after their medication to enjoy their first cup.
• Fourth, it might offer some improvement in symptoms to people who are just not getting optimal absorption by taking thyroid medication during the day.
While these are smaller studies, they confirm what many patients anecdotally have been reporting for years: they feel better if they take their thyroid medication in the evening, rather than the morning.

You may want to talk to your practitioner about changing the time you take your levothyroxine (i.e., Synthroid, Levoxyl, Tirosint) to bedtime, versus morning. And if you decide to change to taking your thyroid medication in the evening, be sure to have your thyroid levels evaluated—six to eight weeks is a reasonable timeframe—after you’ve made the switch. The blood test results, along with any improvements or worsening of symptoms, will help you and your doctor to determine if you need to adjust the dosage or timing of your medication.

What About Natural Thyroid and T3 Medications?
This study was conducted with levothyroxine, a synthetic form of the long-acting T4/thyroxine thyroid hormone. This form of the hormone must first be converted in the body to the active form (T3), and this can take days. Thyroid drugs that contain T3—such as Cytomel, and the natural desiccated thyroid drugs like Nature-throid and Armour Thyroid—are used directly by the body within hours. These drugs were not evaluated in the study, and it's not known if medications containing T3, or natural desiccated thyroid drugs would be better absorbed at night.
Anecdotally, some thyroid patients have reported improvement in symptoms when taking some or all of their T3-based thyroid hormone replacement medications in the evening. But some thyroid patients also find that if they take a medication with T3 later in the day or in the evening, the slight stimulatory effect of the T3 medication can make it difficult to sleep.
So keep in mind that while it's very possible that if a similar study were conducted with T3 drugs, the results would be similar, there is some chance that it would impact sleep quality in some patients.

Only make such a change after discussing it with your doctor.
Optimally, some doctors have suggested that patients who take medications use a time-released or sustained release formulation of T3, or T3 split their doses. This approach seems to minimize sleep interference.

Again, if you do make a change to how you take your T3 thyroid medication, you'll want to have a reevaluation of blood levels and symptoms after several weeks, to determine if you need to adjust the dosage or timing of your medication.
energylost
energylost

My PERSONAL study--T4, T3 or Armour can be taken at bedtime. Results in better absorption. Eradicates or lessens CHRONIC symptoms, Balances the CIRCADIAN RHYTHM.

My personal study, No need to consult a doctor UNLESS it interferes with taking other medications.
Posts You May Be Interested In:
  • Ash

    Sleeping/waking

    I think my body clock is all wrong. I don't sleep well at night, am exhausted during most of the day and just now this evening I'm starting to wake up a bit. Does anyone else have this kind of problem? How do I get a more conventional sleeping pattern, or am I just a night owl?
  • Nina1959

    Something... ordinary... How's the Weather?

    We get heavy here a lot and that is necessary in a support group but sometimes you just want to chat about ordinary things.So, we're from all over the world..How's the weather where you are this month - August 2017?Here in the New England area of USA it is Summer. It's temperate for August in the mid to high 80s F (30 C) daytime and high 50s F (14 C) at night. We get a bit more rain in the form...