Thyroid Function & Statins

A forum to discuss personal experiences and share information on statins and other cholesterol lowering drugs.

Postby Biologist » Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:30 am

Brooks,

From page 82 of “Adrenal Fatigue: The 21st Century Stress Sydrome”

**http://www.amazon.com/Adrenal-Fatigue-Century-Stress-Syndrome/dp/1890572152/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/192-3347565-6792727?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1231136039&sr=8-1

“Sergent’s White Line (present in about 40% of people with adrenal fatigue)

This test was first described in 1917 by a French physician named Emile Sergent, as a simple test for low adrenal function that is still useful today. To do this test, simply take the dull end of a ballpoint pen and lightly stroke the skin of your abdomen, making a mark about six inches long. Within a few seconds a line will appear. In a normal reaction, the mark made by the pen is initially white but reddens within a few seconds. If you have hypoadrenia, the line will stay white for about two minutes and will also widen. This test, although not always positive in people with hypoadrenia (about 40% of cases) is a slam dunk confirmation of the presence of hypoadrenia.

Sergent’s white line is only present in moderate to severe hypoadrenia and, in borderline cases, may only be present when the adrenals are at a low ebb.”

Since I fail in a big way (i.e., the line never turns red but widens and stays white for over two minutes), it makes me pretty sure that I have adrenal fatigue (which would also account for my fatigue, and is also to be expected after being chronically ill for months/years from adverse statins effects).

Now, the possibility exists that that is ALL I had such that fixing that problem would perhaps have also fixed the hypothyroid issue (where the problem would have been inadequate absorption of adequate amounts of existing T3/T4 by the cells due to an inadequacy of cortisol in the blood from the adrenals). But at this point, I will continue with the schedule I have planned and get to adrenal concerns in a few weeks after trying to increase body temperature with thyroid hormone. (What cinbad writes makes good sense and that is what I will use as a guide.) It is my understanding that later I can go back to letting my thyroid gland do all the work (if the issue turns out to only be adrenal-related) by slowly cutting down on the exogenous thyroid hormone. You cannot depend on doing that with testosterone replacement – the pituitary gland gets use to not sending out gonadotropins (i.e., FSH & LH) and will not reliably restart. However, apparently the pituitary does not get lazy about resending Thyroid Stimulating Hormone if you decide to let it run again. That is my current understanding. (Remember, there is no need for TSH if you are supplying its product with Armour.) But taking thyroid pills is no big deal anyway, so I will not be in any big hurry if I get my energy back in the deal.

BTW, the very next page is where he describes saliva testing as being the preferred test over urine and blood testing for adrenal issues. However, it appears that for Thyroid issues you will need to draw blood or use a Blood Spot test.

ZRT Labs is a good for both types of testing and will send you the kits for free. You pay when you mail them in. Spend some time on their website if you have the time (zrtlab.com).

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Postby cjbrooksjc » Mon Jan 05, 2009 1:01 pm

B: Very helpful and interesting. Thanks.

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Postby Esmeralda » Tue Jan 20, 2009 10:22 am

Prior to beginning Crestor, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and began treatment. I have since discovered that it was the combination of Levothyroxine and Crestor that caused my physical ailments.
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Postby Esmeralda » Tue Jan 20, 2009 10:48 am

To clarify this point, the Levothyroxine and Armour Thyroid do not interact well with many prescription drugs.
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Postby catspjs » Sat Jan 24, 2009 11:36 am

All the while I was on zocor I had symptoms of hypothyroidism...every thyroid test came back negative....No tumors either....A wise rheumatologist did a Vit D level and mine was very low...I started taking just 2000 iu of Vit d a day along with 1200 mg of Calcium....You guess it , the thyroid symptoms have disappeared incl my dry hair and fingers...It is my belief now, that somehow zocor helped my Vit d levels to go down to the point where it affected my thyroid...where, of course, wouldn't show up on any tests....Vit d is a partner in many body functions...Once again statins are supposedly putting "something in" at the expense of taking a whole lot of other stuff out......Interesting posts and confirming what I have figured out on my own......
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Postby redheadedmary » Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:08 pm

My cholesterol never went down when my thyroid disease was treated and regulated. Its still high. It did go down about 20 points though when I lost all of my weight and was skinny again but its still "high" every time its checked on a blood test.
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Postby Biologist » Tue Jan 27, 2009 2:32 am

Esmeralda,

You write:

"Prior to beginning Crestor, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and began treatment. I have since discovered that it was the combination of Levothyroxine and Crestor that caused my physical ailments."

I don't doubt it. How did you make the determination that was the problem and that the two interact poorly? Doctors' comments or reading medical literature?

Thanks.

--------

redheadedmary,

You write:

"My cholesterol never went down when my thyroid disease was treated and regulated. Its still high. It did go down about 20 points though when I lost all of my weight and was skinny again but its still "high" every time its checked on a blood test"

What are your cholesterol levels and how old are you?

I have seen a "distribution chart" in one of my books showing the number of people who reduce their cholesterol levels with thyroid correction versus those whose levels go up or remain the same. By far most go down. A few stay the same and a few go up a bit. As you know, there are many factors involved. As Brooks says, our bodies know where our cholesterol needs to be. You may be just where you should be.

-------

catspjs,

There is no doubt that I have been feeling better with more energy in the last couple of weeks, but the picture for why is not real clear after getting testing results back. I will post on it in this thread before too long. I will say this, my Vitamin D was up over the reference range -- which is good. The reference range is just where most people plot on the graph, not an indicator of optimal values for VD. We know most people are low. I have been supplementing a good bit for months. That statins may have pushed your levels down sounds possible to me, and the fact that your TSH, T3 and T4 levels appeared OK on tests may not be surprising even if you were having thyroid related problems. However, your symptoms may not have been thyroid related though. But maybe.

I don't know if Pharma & Friends (e.g., American Heart Association, JAMA, etc.) have gone after VD the way they went after VE yet, but here is a write up on that attack:

*http://www.newswithviews.com/Richards/byron44.htm

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Postby Biologist » Mon Feb 09, 2009 11:52 pm

In my recent testings there were a couple of surprises. For one, my morning cortisol level (which was the only time of day I tested) was at the high end of the range. One-tenth a point more and it would have been above the range. I thought my levels would be low. Wrong. (Reading all of this thread explains why I believed it would be low.)

The second surprise was that my free and total testosterone levels were much higher than my doctor and I believed they would be (Estradiol level was fine). We have several theories for this, but most involve inadequate clearing. (I will be studying more on this issue. BTW, my endocrine system problems are very statin-related as has been discussed in previous posts.) However, this second surprise may explain the first one. High testosterone may well have been responsible for the high cortisol levels; and these two levels MAY explain the energy-related problems that I was having. (I had not done any testosterone testing in months -- my mistake.) I quit taking thyroid. I have been feeling OK except for major exercise fatigue and a few other issues which I have had for two years.) The literature suggests that I need to get my testosterone levels more normalized before doing anything further. Once that is fixed, as verified by testing in a few weeks, I will be looking at thyroid issue again if need be.

My thyroid levels were pretty normal with TSH being very low as expected with the supplementation. My DHEA level was 2.2 with the range being "less than 6.0" on blood testing; it was 14.1 on a range of 2-23 on saliva testing. (I have been supplementing with 25 mg per day but will likely raise that to 50 mg.s after my next set of tests.) My CRP was 0.68 on a scale of "less than 3.0". My homocistine was 10 with a scale of 'less than 13". I would like to get that lower still and know how to do it.

The saliva testing and the blood testing, while using different scales as they measure in different mediums, where fairly consistent (which was a test of the testing systems I conducted while I was at it).

So my interest in thyroid issues is on hold for now. My morning temperatures are about 97.2 which is about where it was when I started (after correction for a bad thermometer's readings initially). It will be interesting to see if it comes up when testosterone levels come down. Regardless, in the future I may still be looking at the prospect of thyroid supplementation as a potential means of generating more and better mitochondria, as I have discussed in a past post.

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Postby Biologist » Sat Sep 19, 2009 10:31 am

The FDA has done some remarkable things regarding Mercury recently. Totally incredible. Criminal in any scientist's book. Investigations have started, which may lead to more.

Looks like natural Thyroid Hormone is now on the front burner for mischief. It's gotten hot. Better read this:

*http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/09/19/Is-the-FDA-Poised-to-Ban-a-Century-Old-Natural-Remedy.aspx

I recommend you have your doctor change your prescription to a higher dose pill where those pills are still available for now. They will likely not be for long. Stock up and get a pill cutter.

If you are not getting Dr. Mercola's free newsletter, don't think for a minute you are keeping up with what is going on regarding medical politics. I recommend signing up. This goes especially for all doctors.

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Postby cjbrooksjc » Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:40 pm

Below is one Doctor's reaction to Armour vs. Synthriod followed by a cut and paste segment from HSI Alerts.

***************************

Dr. Douglass: "Research shows that the thyroid hormone T3 is more active than T4 – in fact, it is roughly four times as strong as T4. In the body, all T4 hormones must be converted into T3 in order to control metabolism. Many patients do not have the enzymatic capability to make that conversion.

"Synthroid is T4. After I discovered this fact, I switched all of my hypothyroid patients to a natural thyroid product (called Armour). Natural thyroid is derived from the thyroid glands of pigs and is a combination of T3 and T4. The majority of these patients experienced an almost immediate improvement."

**********

Recently, the FDA has taken steps that would seem to signal the end of desiccated thyroid products like Armour.

This situation is being followed by Mary Shomon, a thyroid patient advocate who writes about hypothyroidism and other health issues. In a recent posting on her blog that appears on about.com, Mary describes a "very troubling situation."

It appears that the FDA has asked several companies that produce natural desiccated thyroid to submit a new drug application for their products. Of course, these applications require research that costs millions of dollars. So the companies basically have no choice but to take their products off the market.

***************************

Fill out a MEDWATCH report, write your congressman (the small c is intentional), or write to the fda (same) directly. This is shamefaced collusion at best.

Regards,

Brooks
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normal thyroid tests

Postby Cathy » Tue Sep 22, 2009 1:15 pm

Is there anything out there that will help for hypothyroid besides RX meds? My Dr. says my thyroid is fine,on the low end of "normal" but nothing to worry about, altho, I have all the smytoms. Will not prescribe anything unless I go to a specialist. I can't afford another Dr.!!!!!!!! This statin thing has just about bankrupt me. All the time, another new drug, physical therapy, shrink, bio-feedback ect. Nothing is helping. The pain specialist has me on oxycotin, percocet and zanaflex, just to be able to function half-way. My hair is falling out, I'm so tired all the time, sometimes I sleep all day. On the other hand, most of the time at night I sleep for 2 hours at a time, then awake for 3, sleep for 2. OK enough of my ranting......
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Postby Biologist » Thu Sep 24, 2009 12:36 am

Hi, Cathy.

You sure sound like a good candidate for a trial of thyroid hormone to me. Being "low normal" is a strong indicator since the population used for establishing the range was probably low. There is little doubt average thyroid levels have dropped in the last ten years and almost certainly over the last 50. There are just too many things in the environment these days that adversely effect that gland.

Seems to me either your regular doctor or the specialist with all the pain meds should have tried you on thyroid hormone, and also checked your Vitamin D. Both reduce pain at proper physiologic levels. Could be your doctors are the best candidates for the shrink, then again, so are some of the shrinks...

Be sure to take an Iodine supplement. I do.

I sympothize with you. Your self-diagnosis is likely correct.

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Postby cjbrooksjc » Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:16 pm

Cathy:

You can buy manufactured bovine T3 and T4 on the internet, but you have to be very careful with dosage if you decide that is how you want to address your problem. I am not a doctor or med professional. This is just information.

Best,

Brooks
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Thyroid Function & Statins

Postby cinbad » Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:20 pm

I didn't read all the posts on this subject but wanted to add my personal experience with this. I took Crestor for about 6 yrs. and my Doctor never tested my thyroid. My doctor also knew that I regularly drank 2 or three beers a day. In March 2005 Health Canada put out an advisory that stated that anyone who is hypothyroid or drinks alcohol on a regular basis shouild not be taking Crestor. I quit Crestor in Jan 2007 but did not see the advisory until this year. I have since been tested and I am hypothyroid and I take 21mg. daily of armour thyroid. I quit alcohol in 2005. I have suffered from perepheral neuropathy since 2003 which is degenerative even after stopping Crestor and alcohol and taking thyroid supplements. My neuropathy started in my toes but I am now up to my knees in it. I take all the supplements that I have read about on Spacedoc. I am healthy as a horse except for the neuropathy and I hope that it will stop progressing. I guess my statement here is for newbies that are maybe still on statins and my warning to them is check your thyroid and don't wash down your pills with a beer.
:)
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Postby Biologist » Thu Sep 24, 2009 4:24 pm

Two very interesting posts.

Brooks, I will check into the online T3 & T4. Are they not in the same preparation like Armour Thyroid, Brooks? That would make sense to me that they would be. It should be an extra, and expensive, and seemingly unnecessary process to separate the two, it would seem to me. But you sure have my interest up. I will be seeing my "thyroid doctor" next week to strategize the situation. Any more information you may have on this would be helpful. Thanks. (You can just email me if you would rather.)

cinbad, You write:

"I take 21mg. daily of armour thyroid"

Where do you get such a pill? I thought the smallest was the 30 mg pill?

That info regarding the "March 2005 Health Canada" is very interesting to me. Do you know where I can find it. I have not tried yet to Google it. No warning being provided by a doctor regarding the use of Alcohol and Statins as with Thyroid Issues & Statins should be grounds for summary loss of licensure by our states' medical boards. It may be in the future.

I would have to say that Canada has proven itself to be a much more responsible country than the good old USA when it comes to keeping their citizens healthy and safe. They are the ones who put out the CoQ10 warning on statin prescriptions years ago. I could not be more disgusted with the drug company corruption and the government collusion here in the states. Currently we are a country of idiots and crooks. The sheeple (not people, we have sheeple here) better wise up. I liked what that woman did recently with here "debtor's revolt" video recently. Made some good waves. I think we are doing the same here.

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Postby cjbrooksjc » Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:53 am

B: Not the same. Armour (the now unavailable one) is porcine (p, p, p, piggy thyroid) and the stuff I suggested is bovine (cow thyroid). You can also get either artificial T3 or T4. And the smallest Armour tab is 15 Mg. There's more (pertinent to your Dr visit); I'll email you.

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Postby Biologist » Fri Sep 25, 2009 12:04 pm

Thanks, Brooks.

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