Hypothyroidism - Treatment Overview
You are likely to need treatment
hypothyroidism from now on. As a result,
you need to take your medicine as directed. For some people, hypothyroidism gets worse as they age and the dosage of thyroid medicine may have to be
increased gradually as the thyroid continues to slow down.
people treated with thyroid hormone develop symptoms again if their medicine is
stopped. If this occurs, medicine needs to be restarted.
serious illness or infection triggers your hypothyroidism, your thyroid
function most likely will return to normal when you recover. To check
whether thyroid function has returned to normal, thyroid hormone medicine may
be stopped for a short time. In most people, a brief period of hypothyroidism
occurs after thyroid medicine is stopped. There is often a delay in the body's
signals that tell the thyroid to start working again. If the thyroid can
produce enough hormone on its own, treatment is no longer needed. But if
hormone levels remain too low, you need to restart thyroid medicine.
While taking thyroid hormone medicine, you need to see your doctor once a
year for checkups. You will have a blood test (thyroid-stimulating hormone [TSH] test) to make sure you have a normal hormone
Treatment if the condition gets worse
hypothyroidism continue, such as sluggishness,
constipation, confusion, and feeling cold. This may occur if you are not taking
enough thyroid hormone or if your medicine is not absorbed from your
gastrointestinal tract. Having a bowel disease or taking certain other
medicines may block thyroid hormone. If needed,
your doctor will increase your dose.
Your doctor may
suggest you try the combination therapy of
T3/T4 medicine if T4 medicine is not controlling your
If your dose of thyroid hormone is too high, you may
develop complications such as irregular heartbeats and, over time,
osteoporosis. If you have heart disease, too much
medicine can cause pain (angina) and irregular heartbeats. Your doctor will
watch your thyroid levels using a
thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) test. If needed,
your doctor will lower your dose.