Synthroid / Levothyroxine

So I have been on Levothyroxine for about a month now.  I got my blood test yesterday and my TSH levels are at 1.8 which apparently is very good…so no change in medication.  All I need to do is carry on taking my pills every day.

The brand name for Levothyroxine is Synthroid.  Essentially it’s a synthetic form of the thyroid hormone.  There could be some side effects but I haven’t had any of the ones listed so far.  I will definitely be keeping an eye out.  Because my thyroid has been falling down on the job, it’s not producing enough thyroid hormone and because it’s not producing the hormone it is producing “thyroid stimulating hormone.”  Hence, high TSH = low thyroid function.  Apparently, the thyroid is super important.  It plays a role in growth and metabolism because it regulates cellular function.  An underactive thyroid can wreak havoc on sex hormone metabolism as well as be a cause for miscarriage as your thyroid cannot keep up with the your needs as well as the needs of another organism.

The other thing I have found is that there is quite a bit of controversy regarding what “normal TSH” levels are and what this means to achieving pregnancy.  Apparently, the normal range for TSH levels used to be 0.5 – 5.0 but for the last couple of years there has been a raging dispute among thyroid experts and some believe that the range should really be 0.3 – 3.0.  My original levels were at 3.5 and my doctor deemed this unacceptable so we know which side of the fence he’s on.

As for thyroid levels affecting fertility, there is a whole lot of speculation out there on that issue as well.  I have run across several message boards as well as an about.com article where women claim that their doctors believe that a woman cannot get much less maintain a pregnancy unless her TSH levels are at about 1 -2.  I can’t seem to find any studies on these claims.  Could my underactive thyroid have been preventing me from getting pregnant?  There is no way to know.  Could I have been pregnant without even knowing it and had a miscarriage?  Possible but unlikely.  In any case, I have to say that I am more comfortable being in the 1-2 range now.  If pregnancy strikes I will be prepared!

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