Most endocrinologists give hypothyroid patients, including those with Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism, a drug called Levothyroxine (also called Synthroid). However, Dr. Friedman has found that desiccated thyroid, often called desiccated thyroid extract (DTE) is more effective. The most common brands of desiccated thyroid are Armour thyroid and NP thyroid. Here are some reasons why-
- 15% of hypothyroid patients with a normal TSH on Levothyroxine feel hypothyroid. This happens less with patients on desiccated thyroid.
- At least 7 articles have compared desiccated thyroid with Levothyroxine and in all of them patients on desiccated thyroid preferred desiccated thyroid over Levothyroxine.
- Levothyroxine contains only T4, while liothyronine (T3) is the active hormone. The body makes 85% T4 and 15% T3. Conventional endocrinologists hope the body goes into over-drive to convert the T4 to T3, but in many patients that doesn’t happen.
- Desiccated thyroid contains T4 and T3 in a good ratio and is a good way to get T4 which acts as a storage hormone, and T3 which is the active hormone.
- Some patients have an alteration in their gene that converts T4 to T3. Although that gene can’t be easily measured, giving the T3 in desiccated thyroid overcomes the problem.
- It was previously thought that desiccated thyroid was not standardized. However, that is no longer true and desiccated thyroid is quite standardized.
- Dr. Friedman is in the process of publishing his work on reverse T3 (rT3) which blocks T3 from binding to the thyroid hormone receptor. He found high (detrimental) rT3 levels in patients on Levothyroxine and lower levels on desiccated thyroid.
If you want to see an expert on desiccated thyroid for hypothyroidism, contact Dr. Friedman.