In case you missed the first blog post about my recent medical issues, here it is.
And now it is time for an update…
Friday, February 13 I had a consultation with my doctor. My most recent TSH reading was 3.55, which is still quite high. My doctor said that for someone of my age, my TSH should be no higher than 2.4, so while my TSH readings have dropped, they are not what is considered normal for me. We also discussed all of the symptoms I have been having and my options in moving forward.
- Do nothing and check my TSH again in 8-12 weeks.
- Get referred to an endocrinologist (only to have them tell me what my doctor was already saying).
- Start taking medicine (specifically Synthroid, since generic versions are not as closely regulated by the FDA).
I asked my doctor what the possible side effects are of the drug and then asked her to step into my shoes. “Knowing my medical history, the symptoms I am experiencing, my TSH levels and how important health and fitness are to me, if you were me, what would you do?” Her response…”I would go on the medicine and get my TSH tested again in 6 weeks to see how it is affecting you. If you do nothing and test again in 8-12 weeks, you probably aren’t going to see changes in the next 8-12 weeks. If I refer you to an endocrinologist, they are going to recommend you start taking Synthroid, so you’d only be delaying the inevitable.”
After spending a whole hour talking with my doctor (yes…I spent a whole hour with her and got all my questions answered), we decided that going on medicine is my best option. I started the medicine on Saturday and haven’t noticed any difference yet. It should take about 6 weeks for differences to be noticed in how I feel. It does require me to plan the timing of my meals differently and take my vitamins and other pills (glucosamine, amino recovery and allergy meds) at different times. There are a lot of restrictions to prevent other things from binding with the drug, which would make it ineffective in my body.
- My meds need to be taken on an empty stomach with nothing but water and consumed 4 hours after my last food intake and 1 hour before consuming anything except water.
- No food or beverage (except water) for 1 hour after taking my meds.
- No vitamins/glucosamine/amino recovery for 4 hours after taking my meds.
- I can take my allergy meds 1 hour after taking the Synthroid.
This has made me think about when the best time to take the medicine would be…morning? before bed? I decided morning is definitely the best option for my lifestyle. Since I am in bed by 8 pm and get up at 4 am, I would have to eat supper at 4 pm to take my meds before going to bed…that isn’t happening. I typically don’t have a 5-6 hour window without food during the day, so first thing in the morning it is…I just can’t eat right when I get up and now take my “morning” vitamins at lunch time.
I will get my TSH tested again on March 30, which will tell us more about how my body is responding to the medicine.