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Alternatives for Armour Thyroid

Q. When Armour thyroid disappeared, my doctor used a conversion chart to try to get the same dose for me as my Armour. So far, my hair is thinning, my fingernails are peeling back layer by layer, and I have begun to gain weight.

I am usually cold, tired and upset because I am miserable on Synthroid. I’ll have to wait another month before a blood test will tell if the dose is right. I can already tell it isn’t. I’d appreciate any information you have about getting the most from Synthroid, since I can’t get Armour any more.

A. Many people with thyroid problems do well on Synthroid, but some feel better on Armour desiccated thyroid gland. Armour has become scarce lately, with no indication when the manufacturer may replenish the supply.

Your doctor could prescribe Erfa desiccated thyroid from Canada. This is more similar to Armour than synthetic levothyroxine (Synthroid). Other options include getting a compounding pharmacy to make your dose of desiccated thyroid, or having your doctor prescribe a T3 product such as Cytomel in addition to the Synthroid.

Your symptoms suggest too little thyroid activity. We are sending you our Guide to Thyroid Hormones with more information on test results, symptoms and treatment of this condition.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies..
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