Levothyroxine - Generic Synthroid
Common 30-Day Supply: 30
Levothyroxine, generic Synthroid, treats hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) by adding a synthetic version of the hormone thyroxine (T4) to the body. Women are more likely than men to have an underactive thyroid. Symptoms include fatigue, weight gain, dry skin and sensitivity to cold. Levothyroxine is also sold as Unithroid, Levothyroid and Tirosint, Levo-T and Tirosint-Sol.
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Why Is Levothyroxine, Generic Synthroid Prescribed?
Your physician may prescribe levothyroxine to treat underactive thyroid if the cause of your condition is caused by irregular levels of Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) or you don't have enough available (free) thyroxine (T4) in your blood.
It is not indicated for temporary or transient hypothyroidism.
Levothyroxine is also prescribed for suppressive therapy to treat or prevent goiter, enlarged thyroid.
What Is Hypothyroidism?
Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid does not produce enough of the major hormones T4 and triiodothyronine (T3).
What Do T4 And T3 Do?
T4 is necessary for the creation of T3. T3 is used by the cells for
- Food metabolism
- Energy creation
- Healthy skin
- Muscle development, and more.
What Are Symptoms Of Underactive Thyroid?
- Dry skin
- Slow heart beat
- Muscle aches
- Unexplained weight gain, and more
What Is T4?
T4 is a precursor hormone to T3. Although the thyroid produces about 80% T4 and only about 20% T3, most of the T4 in the body is bound to proteins and therefore unusable.
The pituitary gland creates TSH to regulate the amount of T4 produced by the thyroid.
What Is Free T4?
T4 that is bioactive (able to be synthesized by body tissues) is called free T4, or unbound T4.
T3 produced by the thyroid is already in a form that can be used by the body but it can also become bound to proteins and not bioactive.
What Causes Slow Thyroid?
The most common cause of hypothyroidism is Hashimoto's thyroiditis. It is an autoimmune disease that causes the immune system to attack the thyroid gland and inhibit its production of T4 and T3.
Is Hypothyroidism More Common In Women Than Men?
Yes, women are more likely to have an underactive thyroid than men.1 In fact, women are more likely than men to have any type of thyroid dysfunction.2
It is estimated that 20 million American have thyroid disorders and less than half are aware of their condition.3
People over the age of 60 are at higher risk for hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism.1,2
What Is Goiter?
Goiter is an enlargement of the thyroid hormone. It may be caused by hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism or lack of iodine in the diet. An enlarged thyroid may not impact the gland's function but may be uncomfortable or make it difficult to swallow. Goiters may be benign or cancerous.
1 Hypothyroidism | Hashimoto's Disease | MedlinePlus. Medlineplus.gov. https://medlineplus.gov/hypothyroidism.html. Published 2020. Accessed July 20, 2020.
2 Hyperthyroidism |MedlinePlus. Medlineplus.gov. https://medlineplus.gov/hyperthyroidism.html Published 2020. Accessed July 22, 2020.
3 https://www.Thyroid.Org/Media-Main/Press-Room/; 2020 Accessed July 22, 2020.
Levothyroxine sodium tablets, generic levothyroxine, for oral use is a prescription, man-made thyroid hormone that is used to treat a condition called hypothyroidism. It is meant to replace a hormone that is usually made by your thyroid gland. Generally, thyroid replacement treatment is to be taken for life. Levothyroxine should not be used to treat noncancerous growths or enlargement of the thyroid in patients with normal iodine levels, or in cases of temporary hypothyroidism caused by inflammation of the thyroid gland (thyroiditis).
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
Use levothyroxine only as ordered by your doctor. Take levothyroxine as a single dose, preferably on an empty stomach, one-half to one hour before breakfast. Products such as iron and calcium supplements and antacids can lower your body’s ability to absorb levothyroxine, so levothyroxine should be taken 4 hours before or after taking these products.
Thyroid hormones, including levothyroxine, should not be used either alone or in combination with other drugs for the treatment of obesity or weight loss. In patients with normal thyroid levels, doses of levothyroxine used daily for hormone replacement are not helpful for weight loss. Larger doses may result in serious or even life-threatening events, especially when used in combination with certain other drugs used to reduce appetite.
Do not use levothyroxine if you have uncorrected adrenal problems.
Taking too much levothyroxine has been associated with increased bone loss, especially in women after menopause. Once your doctor has found your specific levothyroxine dose, it is important to have lab tests done, as ordered by your doctor, at least once a year.
Foods like soybean flour, cottonseed meal, walnuts, and dietary fiber may cause your body to absorb less levothyroxine from the gastrointestinal tract. Grapefruit juice may cause your body to absorb less levothyroxine and may reduce its effect.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding or are thinking of becoming pregnant while taking levothyroxine. if you are pregnant or breastfeeding or are thinking of becoming pregnant while taking levothyroxine.
Your dose of levothyroxine may need to be increased during your pregnancy. It may take several weeks before you notice an improvement in your symptoms.
Tell your doctor if you are taking any other drugs, including prescription and over-the-counter products. Tell your doctor about any other medical conditions you may have, especially heart disease, diabetes, blood clotting problems, and adrenal or pituitary gland problems.
The dose of other drugs you may be taking to control these conditions may have to be changed while you are taking levothyroxine. If you have diabetes, check your blood sugar levels and/or the glucose in your urine, as ordered by your doctor, and immediately tell your doctor if there are any changes.
If you are taking blood thinners, your blood clotting status should be checked often.
Tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking levothyroxine before any surgery.
Tell your doctor if you develop any of the following symptoms: rapid or abnormal heartbeat, chest pain, difficulty catching your breath, leg cramps, headache, nervousness, irritability, sleeplessness, shaking, change in appetite, weight gain or loss, vomiting, diarrhea, increased sweating, difficulty tolerating heat, fever, changes in menstrual periods, swollen red bumps on the skin (hives) or skin rash, or any other unusual medical event.
Partial hair loss may occur during the first few months you are taking levothyroxine. This is the most important safety information you should know about levothyroxine.
For more information, talk with your doctor. Refer to the Full Prescribing Information, including Medication Guide provided with your medication.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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