Levothyroxine Medicine – Non-Adherence
Levothyroxine Medicine is a synthetic form of the thyroid hormone thyroxine. Levothyroxine is an integral part of treatment for hyperthyroid patients, but there are other medications that can also be prescribed to alleviate symptoms in this condition. One of these medications is Levothyroxine Sodium, which is given in conjunction with Levothyroxine. Levothyroxine can be administered by mouth, as an injection, or as a patch. The purpose of all three forms of administration is the same: to provide for a more natural approach to regulating thyroid function and helping with the adverse side effects of Levothyroxine, particularly those associated with hyperthyroidism and its complications.
In clinical trials, patients taking levothyroxine but treated with a combination of other ingredients experienced fewer colds and more perspiration than patients treated with levothyroxine alone. One of the goals of the clinical trial was to determine if the addition of the non-active ingredient significantly improved patients’ responses to the medication. The investigators report that although the majority of patients who took the combination had stable hypothyroidism as judged by both test procedures and blood tests, a subset of these patients had a more rapid response to their medication. Of these patients, however, there was an increased risk of new or developing hypothyroidism, a reaction to the active ingredient, or an allergic reaction to one of the inactive ingredients in the medication.
Levothyroxine can cause serious, even life-threatening, reactions in some individuals. Levothyroxine Sodium and its metabolite, Levothyroxine, work by inducing an increase in the thyroid gland’s production of thyroid hormones. Levothyroxine and other synthetic thyroxine analogs work by binding to the thyroid and preventing it from making and releasing its hormone. Although Levothyroxine is the most commonly used synthetic thyroid hormone, its use is still limited by factors affecting treatment adherence.
One of the factors limiting the use of Levothyroxine is the risk for hypothyroidism. Levothyroxine is marketed as a prescription drug and should be counted as one of the medications that must be taken daily under the care of a doctor. Levothyroxine tablets should be taken at least one hour before or after the scheduled meal. Because Levothyroxine cannot be metabolized in the body, it is expected that the drug will be partially absorbed into the body through the food that is consumed. This is one of several factors that affect treatment adherence.
Levothyroxine Side Effects
A second factor limiting the use of Levothyroxine is the potential for allergic reaction to its ingredient, Levothyroxine. Levothyroxine is manufactured by Hoffman-La-Roche, a pharmaceutical company that also produces several other prescription drugs. The company’s website states, “There have been no formal data on the effects of… Levothyroxine on patients with acute or chronic forms of celiac disease or Lupus.” The Food and Drug Administration has not determined whether the substance is safe for use in patients with lactose intolerance, Crohn’s disease, or any other condition that affects the immune system. In addition, some researchers believe that Levothyroxine could possibly cause liver damage in certain individuals. If you are currently using or thinking about starting a new prescription drug program, it is important to discuss the risks of Levothyroxine with your health care provider to determine if it is right for you.
In general, the risk of allergic reactions to standard Levothyroxine tablets is very low. Some common side effects include headache, abdominal pain, peeling or dry skin, nausea, and vomiting. Rare but serious side effects include liver problems, blood clots, stroke, and brain aneurysm. For most patients taking the drug for depression, the effects of Levothyroxine rarely cause severe adverse reactions. If you suffer from depression, asthma, or other conditions you should notify your physician before you start taking Levothyroxine.
Levothyroxine is commonly prescribed in combination with other medical conditions such as anti-depressants. In patients with Levothyroxine-induced hyperthyroidism, medical treatments combined with dietary recommendations have shown to be the best option for controlling thyroid disease. To help patients control their thyroid disease while promoting healthy levels of the thyroid gland, medical professionals have designed multiple small meals per day, called regimented meal plans. Although Levothyroxine is usually prescribed in the initial weeks of treatment, patients should avoid extreme food choices to allow the body to slowly adapt to the dietary changes. One important note: patients who are undergoing thyroid replacement therapy should avoid using Levothyroxine and should consult with their physician regarding the safety of the drug when used in conjunction with these medications.
Levothyroxine When To Take
Levothyroxine is among a group of synthetic hormones that has been shown to lead to mild yet significant non-adherence. The majority of patients who begin treatment with Levothyroxine remain on the medication for the duration of approximately five years. The majority of doctors will advise patients to stay on the medication until at least one year after the treatment has been started. Patients who exhibit symptoms of hypothyroidism, stroke, aneurysms, or severe anaphylactic shock should notify their physicians immediately and should complete the medical treatment as directed.