Category Archives: SSRI

FDA Attacks Natural Thyroid Millions Depend On

http://www.healthfreedom.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=878

We have learned that Time-Cap Labs, producer of a generic version of the brand name drug Armour, a natural and bioidentical thyroid replacement, has been ordered by the FDA to stop production. The FDA has decided to classify the company’s product, available for over a century, as an unapproved new drug. Since the new drug approval process is prohibitively expensive for a non-patentable substance, the FDA is in effect banning the natural product. The purpose? Presumably to protect the profits of other, inferior drugs that have been FDA approved.

According to statistics by the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists and other medical organizations, approximately twenty-seven million Americans have a thyroid disorder. Thyroid consumer advocate Mary Shomon projects that 2 million of these patients take either Armour Thyroid or a generic equivalent.

Armour and other “whole” natural thyroid preparations (including Westhroid and Nathroid as well as Time-Cap Lab’s Thyroid) are bio-identical, complete hormone preparations, containing “T4” “T3” “T2” and “T1” in the same proportions made by the human thyroid.

The FDA approved preparations Synthroid (T4), Cytomel (T3), and Levethyroxine (T4) include bio-identical molecules, but are not complete or totally bio-identical as they do not contain “T2” or “T1”. It’s no wonder so many people feel much better with the balanced natural products that have been available for generations.

As famed physician Dr. Jonathan Wright observes: “Natural thyroid has never killed or severely harmed anyone since its first use in the 1890s, prior to the FDA itself. It is a mainstay not only in the treatment of hypothyroidism but also in ‘healthy aging’ therapy. That the FDA should even be thinking of requiring a new drug approval for a safe, 100 plus year old natural treatment is outrageous.”

We will report further as soon as we confirm more of the facts, and as always, we’ll let you know how you can get involved.

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Filed under Abbott, Armour, Autoimmune, Back-order, Bio-identical, Depression, Desiccated thyroid, FDA, Government, Hormone, Hypothyroidism, Naturethroid, Obama, SSRI, Synthroid, T3, T4, Thryoid, Uncategorized

Desiccated thyroid in the management of hypothyroidism: Part III

Posted by Thomas Repas, DO, FACP, FACE, CDE January 8, 2009 10:45 AM

Most people would not dream of directing a cardiologist how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation during a cardiac arrest. They also would not come in to see the surgeon with a specific outline on how to do the procedure. Most would decline to have their surgery done in the same way and with the same techniques as in the 1970s. Despite this, many intelligent, otherwise reasonable people have no hesitation trying to “teach” me about the thyroid. Many of these same people also request to have their thyroid disorder managed similar to how we did decades ago.

Why is this?

There are several reasons. For one, despite the advances made in technology, scientific knowledge and outcomes over recent decades, modern medicine has failed many patients from a humanistic perspective. It is not too much to expect for questions to be answered and treatment options explained. Everyone desires to be listened to and heard. There is nothing more discouraging than when one’s symptoms are ignored. I have witnessed this myself when I and family members have been patients. It is extremely frustrating. Not surprisingly, some pursue alternative options.

Some believe in a more natural approach towards health. Their goal is to minimize the synthetic, processed and man-made. I actually understand this philosophy very well. My family and I grow a large portion of our vegetables organically. We enjoy the sense of connection with the land and the seasons. We take pride in knowing that we participated in the sustainable production of our food. If someone presented to us a well-crafted, scientifically valid argument as to why there is no benefit to organic vs. conventional gardening, we would smile, nod and keep doing what we are doing. We garden organically as much on philosophical grounds as any other reason.

For me to argue for patients to change someone’s belief system based on science is equivalent to attempting to convince them to change their religion or political party on the same grounds. It would be futile as well as absolutely inappropriate.

Health care is different, however, because there is the potential for harm as well as benefit. I am obliged to inform my patients about the positive as well as negative potential consequences of one option over another. This is true no matter if we are discussing alternative vs. more mainstream therapies. However, I realize that I am only one advisor among many. My duty is to provide the most accurate information possible. Patients are free to choose for themselves how they would like to proceed.

Finally, last week I saw a woman who had been on desiccated thyroid for decades. I explained that we now prefer levothyroxine instead of desiccated thyroid. I also quickly pointed out that her thyroid-stimulating hormone has been perfect, between 0.7 mIU/L and 1.0 mIU/L over the last several years. She had no symptoms; it was difficult for me to argue with success. After discussing and asking her what she wanted to do, she left my office still on desiccated thyroid.

Comment by Tom Repas DO FACP FACE CDE — June 12, 2009 12:24 PM

Hello all – I continue to read the comments posted on this and related threads.

I appreciate everyone sharing their insights and experiences. I haven’t responded to every single posted comment because the sheer volume makes it impossible.

I also get the impression that no matter what else I might add, it would be futile and encourage only further attacks.

I confess to purposely choosing a subject which many are passionate about — and which many of my peers avoid discussing at all.

However, if we take our respective positions, dig our heels in and never talk to those with differing opinions, how will medical care ever progress and improve?

Rather than avoiding talking about such topics, I usually prefer to meet them head on and encourage — not discourage — conversation. I’ll do that even if I know that everyone does not agree with me. I could have written about something or taken a position that everyone agrees with — but that would have been too easy.

Several endocrinologist colleagues have told me I’m crazy for writing about such a sensitive issue and in a way that I know would be sure to make me a target.

They are probably correct — but then I’ve never been known to be one who takes the easiest route, simply because is it easy. Don’t forget, I run ultramarathons in my spare time because marathons are “too easy.”

We might not agree on many things but I appreciate everyone sharing their thoughts, opinions and experiences. It actually has helped me in discussing this issue with patients in my own practice.

You have been heard — loud and clear.

Thank you all again for commenting.

(Please DO NOT accuse me of being patronizing — I sincerely do appreciate your comments, even if they differ from my own).

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Filed under Abbott, Armour, Autoimmune, Back-order, Bio-identical, Desiccated thyroid, FDA, Government, Heart Problems, Hormone, Hypothyroidism, Naturethroid, Obama, SSRI, Synthroid, T3, T4, Thryoid, Uncategorized

Stop the Government Takeover of Medicine!

http://www.hotzehwc.com/en/art/258/

We do not want politicians rationing our medical care and telling people that they are somehow too old or too sick for treatment. We do not want politicians deciding which treatments will be available, and which will not.

Whom do we trust more: our doctors or our politicians? Of course we trust our doctors more than our politicians. We must keep and defend our freedoms, starting with our most fundamental freedom to choose the medical care that we need most.

The bill that is passing through the House committees is a complete government takeover of medicine that will restrict our choices and lower the quality of care. HR 3200, misleadingly entitled “America’s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009,” takes away the choice and control that Americans have today over their medical treatment. People will be told under the bill that abortion is covered at taxpayer expense, but some life-saving or life-enhancing treatments are not.

The Obama bill imposes a “public option” that will define which treatments will be allowed. Your access to bio-identical hormones will probably be rejected by the public option, and that could squeeze out even private access to these helpful treatments.

The bill would force people to buy insurance they do not need, and which will not cover what we do need. Taxpayers will be forced to buy that insurance for those who cannot, at a trillion-dollar expense that will bankrupt the government.

The bill requires that government investigate “self-insured employers not being able to pay obligations.” This means government will audit and harass small business owners until they pay for insurance they cannot afford.

The government will dictate the health benefits that must be included by insurance as a condition of being able to participate in the Health Insurance Exchange. The private insurance will have no reason to differ from the public option, and private insurance will soon disappear.

Families with special needs could be hit hardest by this new health bill. In America children with cystic fibrosis live an average of 37 years, but under nationalized health care the life expectancy for this condition is only 27 years in Ireland. That’s because government-run health care does not cover many special-needs conditions, and there is not enough of a private market to fund such care after the government takes over.

The Senate bill’s summary authorizes “home visits” supposedly to “improve immunization coverage.” Americans don’t want government knocking on their doors to demand proof of vaccination.

No one expects the U.S. Post Office to be innovative, and it isn’t. In fact, Post Offices are shortening their hours because they can’t make ends meet. The Post Office did not develop Federal Express, cell phones, and the internet. Do we want medical care in our nation to become like the Post Office? Do we want to kiss goodbye to medical innovation, like possible cures for cancer and other life-saving medical treatments?

Keep the government out of medical care and let the free market work its magic. Return the money to patients so that private medicine can develop the new cures.

The bottom line is that the Obama health care bill gives almost total control to government politicians and bureaucrats to deny you medical care you need. Everyone must say “no” to this government takeover of medicine.

What you can do now:

Go to http://www.house.gov/ and type in your zip code in the upper-left corner to find the Congressman representing you. When their name pulls up, click on it to get to their website. There should be a tab for their district office.

Please call, email, or visit your Congressman while they are in recess this month so they know how you feel about Obama’s plan. Attend town hall meetings in your district like this one, where an ordinary citizen received a thunderous applause for saying: “I look at this health care plan and I see nothing that is about health or about care. What I see is a bureaucratic nightmare, senator. Medicaid is broke, Medicare is broke, Social Security is broke and you want us to believe that a government that can’t even run a cash for clunkers program is going to run one-seventh of our U.S. economy? No sir, no.”

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/08/03/audience-shouts-sebelius-specter-health-care-town-hall-philadelphia/

We have a window of opportunity to make our voices heard! Thank you for speaking out!

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Filed under Abbott, Armour, Autoimmune, Back-order, Bio-identical, Depression, FDA, Government, Heart Problems, Hormone, Hypothyroidism, Naturethroid, Obama, SSRI, Synthroid, T3, T4, Thryoid, Uncategorized

Nature-Throid Natural Desiccated Thyroid Announces Back-Order, Anticipates Availability in 90 Days

http://thyroid.about.com/b/2009/08/17/nature-throid-backorder-thyroid.htm

From Mary Shomon

RLC Labs, the manufacturer of the natural desiccated thyroid drugs Nature-Throid and Westhroid, announced today that their products are currently on back-order. In recent months, shortages of Armour Thyroid during their reformulation caused a large increase in demand for Nature-Throid and Westhroid (which are identical products). After patients reported problems with the reformulated Armour, and many experienced worsening symptoms, an additional demand was put on RLC as patients were switching from Armour Thyroid to Nature-throid and Westhroid. RLC has attempted to ramp up production, but a shortage of raw materials — the “Thyroid USP” desiccated powder that is the main active ingredient — has prevented the company from being able to meet the demand of its customer base, plus the addition of many patients who were formerly on Armour Thyroid.

According to company owner Rick Cox, with regarding to getting more natural desiccated thyroid drugs to market, “We are doing everything we can to move as quickly as we can, safely, to make it happen.” According to Cox, the company is estimating that they will have product availability within 90 days.

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Filed under Abbott, Armour, Back-order, FDA, Government, Hypothyroidism, Naturethroid, SSRI, Synthroid, T3, T4, Thryoid, Uncategorized

Starting a Petition!!!

In the next few days I will be starting a petition regarding Synthroid.  I also will be starting another petition regarding Armour, Nature-throid.  Things are getting kind of scary for us thyroid sufferers.  The FDA and government need to hear us!!!!!  Send letters and sign petitions!!!!  As soon as I have them up I will post!

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Filed under Abbott, Armour, Autoimmune, FDA, Government, Hypothyroidism, Naturethroid, SSRI, Synthroid, T3, T4, Thryoid, Uncategorized

Hypothyroid Medicine Concerns….

I am at the point of hating hypothyroidism.  I get to the point where I am brave enough to try Armour or Naturethroid…and all of a sudden everything is on backorder.  I seriously believe the Armour reformulation is a scam and a conspiracy.  The FDA, government, doctors, and pharmacists want us all to switch to T4 only meds…Synthroid.  Lets be honest.  How many of us actually feel well on Synthroid.  I have been on it for at least 3 years and have not felt good…ever.  Why switch Armour if it was working for so many.  Hell, there was website dedicated to Armour and natural thyroid meds.  Its depressing how we as patients are being treated.  Naturethroid is now on backorder.  This is not fair at all.  There are now thousands of people being bounced between medicines.  These people are feeling miserable.  I feel for them because they tasted what it felt like to feel well.  Please complain to all the companies involved, the FDA and any doctors or pharmacies.  Tell them your concerns.  My true thought here is that the government and the drug companies want us on T4/Synthroid.  The reason for this is becuase if we are on Synthroid or T4 only meds..well we are probably feeling anxiety, depression and other things.  If we are having these feelings then the doctor can then prescribe depression medicine as well as anti-anxiety medicines.  Score for the companies.  They will make more money off of us at the expense of our well-being.  The government wins because they have a bunch of drugged-up people who will not complain no matter what the government does.

Think about it people…its scary!  Fight for your rights because we are losing them slowly.

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Filed under Abbott, Armour, Autoimmune, Depression, FDA, Government, Hypothyroidism, Naturethroid, SSRI, Synthroid, T3, T4, Thryoid, Uncategorized

Armour Thyroid Medication Reformulation Part II

http://www.hospitalsoup.com/health-conditions/thyroid/armour-thyroid-medication-reformulation-part-ii

When Forest Labs changed how Armour Thyroid Medication was formulated, there apparently was no announcement made to physicians, pharmacists or patients taking the drug. Forest has not responded to my request for information or an interview regarding this issue although their Pharmaceutical Customer Service Telephone Number (866-927-3260) states that there are “unexpected production delays” with certain strengths of Armour Thyroid.

When my hypo-thyroid symptoms re-appeared after getting my thyroid prescription refilled, and it was the second time that this had happened, I went online to research possible causes. And imagine my amazement when I discovered I was not the only one having difficulty with the new Armour. I found hundreds of other patients with similar stories reporting brain fog, tiredness, muscle and joint pain, hair falling out, feeling cold, weight gain. All symptoms I was all too familiar with and which were associated with improper levels of thyroid hormone in my body.

According to sources who have been able to speak to someone at Forest Labs, the laboratory changed the fillers in Armour Thyroid. The changes that were reported to have been made include the following: increasing cellulose (this has made Armour more difficult to dissolve), and reducing the amount of dextrose (which was the ingredient which gave it a slightly sweet taste). The “active component” of Armour has said to have remained the same.

Why you must stay vigilant regarding any medications that you take: Medications are made up of “active ingredients” which is the actual part of the tablet containing the specific “medicine” and in-active ingredients which can be flavors, fillers, and dyes. This is why you may have a brand name medication that is similar to a generic version of a drug, but generic versions may work differently for individuals. Because all of us are unique in how we respond to medications, certain fillers or non-active components of a medicine may help or hinder your body from absorbing or responding to a particular medication. That is one reason why in certain cases some physicians will not allow substitution of a generic drug for a brand name, or perhaps vice-versa. In the case of the Armour reformulation it has nothing to do with generic vs. brand names but it is important to understand how fillers, dyes and flavors can effect your response to a medication. From the hundreds of e-mails I’ve received from thyroid patients who had read my first post regarding Armour Thyroid’s reformulation it appears that there are many of us whose bodies are not responding properly to the medication change.

If you are taking Armour Thyroid and have comments about this issue please enter your thoughts below. Let me know if you are experiencing any problems or if the medication is still working for you. One way to tell if you have the “old” Armour or new formulation is that the old formulation had a stronger smell, whereas the new one is less pungent. If you’ve taken Armour before you will understand.

In the next installment, I’ll explain what thyroid medication I am now using, and the good news is that I am slowly getting back to my old self, and the hypo-thyroid symptoms are slowly disappearing.

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Filed under Abbott, Armour, Heart Problems, Hypothyroidism, SSRI, Synthroid, T3, T4, Thryoid, Uncategorized