An Open Letter to All Physicians from a Nurse about thyroid treatment


A Thyroid patient who is also an RN was shocked to see the contents of a letter that a patient’s doctor had sent out to this patient. It was filled with terrible inaccuracies about thyroid treatment, she exclaimed, and she was horrified. No wonder so many thyroid patients are exasperated with their doctors!

So she compiled this excellent letter, refuting several comments made by this doctor, but directing it to ANY doctor who holds these false views.

Take the time to share this on your Facebook pages, your blogs, to your doctor, you name it. Spread the word as we work to Stop the Thyroid Treatment Madness!!


An Open letter to physicians regarding the use of “Pig Thyroid Hormones”

I am writing this letter in response to any physician’s stance against the use of any forms of Natural Desiccated Thyroid (NDT) hormones as replacement for inadequate thyroid hormone levels. I will attempt to include links to medical-journal/peer-reviewed/scientific-based information to help you catch up on the latest in thyroid treatment and information.

I know that you, as a physician, have very limited time when it comes to researching various information on treatment protocols. I acknowledge that you were given limited training on thyroid diagnosis and treatments during your medical school programs, as well as in internship and residency programs, and have likely had to rely on the information provided by Pharmaceutical sales reps.

As such, I believe that your views are unfairly skewed and not fully fleshed out towards the use of T4-only medications such as Synthroid, Levoxyl, and others.

1) Regarding your assertion that Synthroid/T4 only medications are “bio-identical” in structure and thus, are an “adequate replacement” for a thyroid that makes 5 hormones (T4, T3, T2, T1 and calcitonin)

Please review the following photos, showing the chemical structure of human thyroxine (T4) and the chemical structures of T4-only medications such as Tirosint and Synthroid: (source: Synthroid Manufacturer’s Full prescribing information). As you can see below, there is a great difference between the molecular structure of Synthroid and human thyroxine.

Screen Shot 2014-02-17 at 11.55.23 AM











And below, in the top photo, is the human thyroxine (T4) molecule (Source: Chemical and Engineering news: Compared that to the T4 molecule found in Nature-throid, bottom photo, which is one of several commonly-prescribed forms of Natural Desiccated Thyroid (NDT) medication.  (source: Nature-throid prescribing information

As you can see, the molecules are identically formed, and therefore are the ones which are truly “bio-identical in structure”.

Screen Shot 2014-02-17 at 12.00.13 PM











2) Regarding your assertion that the TSH is a stable and reliable test which should be looked at first, while T4 and T3 levels fluctuate frequently and are not stable enough to be considered. 

Here are several medical journal articles which should make anyone rethink the use of the TSH lab test:

And not only the above, but there are a large body of thyroid patients who, for decades, have reported having a very “normal” TSH lab test while having very obvious symptoms of hypothyroidism, including a low temperature, fatigue, exercise intolerance, feeling cold, dry skin, depression, hair loss and more.

3) Regarding your idea as to what amount of T4 or T3 a human thyroid produces in a day (such as 100 mcg T4 and about 6 mcg T3 daily).

That information will vary. For example, another source states that a human thyroid makes on average between 3-5 grains of thyroid hormone per day:  “Estimates of average normal secretion for euthyroid humans are 94-110 µg T4 and 10-22 µg T3 daily (300).  If  you need more, it can be due to exogenous desiccated thyroid (giving it to yourself) vs. the superior absorption of natural release of thyroid hormones.” 


Either way, it varies according to each individual as to what amount of NDT will remove all symptoms.

4) Regarding your assertion that very few thyroid patients have issues with conversion of T4 to T3: 

As you may or may not know, many situations can cause problems with the conversion of T4 to T3 within the body, including a) mineral deficiencies (particularly low iron – a common issue in hypothyroid patients), b) gastrointestinal problems, c) liver problems, d) adrenal cortisol deficiencies (VERY common in T4 only-treated patients due to the inadequacy of being on nothing more than a storage hormone 5) the use of many commonly-prescribed medications including beta blockers or pharmacological doses of corticosteroids.


See Also:

In addition to all the above, there are many thyroid patients who report that their FT3 “looked right” on T4-only, yet they continued to have symptoms of hypothyroidism while on thyroxine.

5) Regarding your assertion that there is no good way to dose Armour and other Natural Desiccated Thyroid Products

The growing body of thyroid patients around the world have frankly not had any issues with dosing NDT. Most dose it twice a day, such as first thing in the morning, and then the early afternoon. And it’s worked well.

Additionally, there are a variety of different strengths to choose from by the manufacturers of Natural Desiccated Thyroid meds such as Armour, NatureThroid, WP Thyroid, NP Thyroid, Erfa etc. For example….

6) Regarding the idea that a supposed “high dose of T3” has a stimulant effect…or is like a large dose of caffeine…or makes you feel good…or is addictive…or doesn’t make much sense physiologically…or may actually be dangerous, especially for the heart. 

I would hope that any doctor who proclaims to be a hormone-balancing “expert” would have a basic working knowledge of the need for T3 hormone in adequate levels for optimal cardiac functioning. Here are some helpful links which demonstrate the need for adequate T3 in order for cardiac functioning to be considered “optimal.”

The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism has reported that long-term levothyroxine replacement therapy in young adults is associated with cardiovascular abnormalities.

And from this article: “Clinical studies have shown that mild forms of thyroid dysfunction, both primary (subclinical hypothyroidism and subclinical hyperthyroidism) and secondary (low T(3) syndrome) have negative prognostic impact in patients with heart failure. In these patients, the administration of synthetic triiodothyronine (T(3)) was well tolerated and induced significant improvement in cardiac function without increased heart rate and metabolic demand “

From this article:  “Altogether, our data indicate that short-term administration of substitutive doses of synthetic L-T3 state reduces activation of the neuroendocrine system and improves LV SV in patients with ventricular dysfunction and low-T3 syndrome”

And this study: “The potential of TH (thyroid hormones) to regenerate a diseased heart has now been tested in patients with acute myocardial infarction in a phase II, randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled study (the THiRST study)”

And this statement, from this American Heart Association-sponsored study states: “…low T3 concentrations are a strong independent predictive marker of poor prognosis in cardiac patients and might represent a determinant factor directly implicated in the evolution and prognosis of these patients. “

To the contrary, hypothyroid patients are not seeking “high doses of T3”. Instead, they seek an amount of NDT that removes their symptoms of hypothyroidism, improves their temperature and metabolism, results in a strong heart and good blood pressure. When we achieve all the latter, we’ve noticed our free T3 in the upper quarter of the range, and the Free T4 around mid-range…and we have no symptoms of excess (if iron and cortisol is also corrected).  It’s all the result of adequate, physiologic doses for replacement, not high doses of NDT with its inherent direct T3.

We are NOT stimulant addicts or drug-seekers, and find that offensive. We are only seeking to replace what our thyroids are not giving us, and to regain a non-hypothyroid state as a result.

We are seeking human decency, wisdom and open-mindedness from our physicians. You would not deny a diabetic patient replacement with the hormone insulin, so why would you deny a person without adequate thyroid function all the right hormones, including the T3 hormone which is critical for every cell in the body to function properly? This seems cruel and unusual treatment in my book, and does NOT correlate with the “first, do no harm” portion of the Hippocratic oath!

7) Regarding the idea that patients are full of “bitter, angry, contentious discourse.”

Do try to understand how it feels to live in a body with a damaged or under-functioning thyroid and to have a doctor replace your missing thyroid hormones with nothing more than a storage hormone. We do not see healthy thyroids only producing a storage hormone. Living life without adequate thyroid hormones (particularly direct T3- the “active” thyroid hormone which every living cell in your body needs to function properly) leaves patients frustrated.

Additionally, put yourself in our shoes when you proclaim us “normal” based on a pituitary hormone, in spite of the fact that we continue to have hypothyroid symptoms. The latter test has repeatedly failed to correspond with how patients feel and function on a daily basis.

Imagine being held to a medication such as Synthroid, which then leaves you with inadequate thyroid hormones to obtain functional levels of daily living, optimal heart function and optimal hormonal balance. Imagine living your life in pain, depression, and with high blood pressure and cholesterol, with inadequate adrenal function, and all your sex hormones thrown off balance simply because your doctor is not open-minded or educated enough to grant you the use of natural desiccated thyroid which can make those symptoms disappear (in the presence of good iron and cortisol). Imagine being unable to get out of bed in the morning due to severe unrelenting fatigue and being unable to think properly due to brain fog caused by lack of thyroid hormones. Imagine missing out on the joys of life, and family, and being a functional member of society, simply because your doctor would not allow you to try a better form of medication. Would you not be upset with your physician if you knew there was a simple solution, yet you were repeatedly brushed off, symptoms ignored, and told to go on with living your half-life and to just “deal with it?”

8) Regarding the idea that Natural Desiccated Thyroid has not worked for some patients

Janie Bowthorpe has compiled several reasons why NDT doesn’t seem to works based on over a decade of reported patient experiences: Can that many patients and their important experiences be unworthy of your open-mindedness and investigation?

In conclusion, I hope that you will read all the above with a more open-mind and rethink your stance on the use of Natural Desiccated Thyroid hormone. It is a proven safe and effective form of treatment for over 122 years and counting. Your patients are counting on YOU to do what is right!


A Hashimoto’s and Graves patient for over 28 years, Post Total Thryoidectomy 2012. Happily out of heart failure and OFF BP and Cholesterol meds, OFF Cholesterol meds since June 2013- when my thyroid doctor put me on Natural Desiccated Thyroid.

65 Responses to “An Open Letter to All Physicians from a Nurse about thyroid treatment”

  1. Jen

    Was the original doctor’s letter published somewhere?

  2. Jill

    Thank you so much for writing this

  3. Morgen

    Dawn’s letter is excellent and she is brave for speaking out.

    I apologize for not posting on this site sooner. I used to be a national hypothyroid consultant, founded a support group that met once a week, had a phone hotline, entered a 80-page international grant application on this issue, started a non-profit and many other things related to this epic problem. The disease is one of the worst there is and made far worse than it has to be by the medical industrial fraud.

    Untreated or under-treated hypothyroidism leads to other diseases, including diabetes. I believe it is the reason for the epidemic of diabetes. Whoa, epidemic in diabetes? There are almost the exact same number of diagnosed diabetes cases as there are hypothyroid cases. Why are they not categorizing hypothyroidism as an epidemic?

    I was fortunate that when I was diagnosed when I was 20, there were no synthetic thyroid yet and no TSH test. I was put on Proloid, a natural pork desiccated thyroid and there I stayed for 30 years. But I was only prescribed 3 grains, and it was not enough and I got many other health problems because that. Even at that level, pharmacists would refuse to fill my prescriptions saying it was too much. However, in 1992 Proloid was forced off the market by the synthetic thyroid companies. I went through the worst nightmare ever, including having my dose reduced to the lowest amount, until 1995 when at the same time I found Nature-Throid and a doctor who was trained in France who was willing to work with me to get my dose increased until my presenting symptoms (50) were solved. I maxed out at 5 grains. It takes a long long time for many symptoms to heal, and they heal at different rates, and probably different for different people. Some are irreversible. This is a very complex issue that doctors want to lump into one simple thing.

    I’ve now been on thyroid for nearly 50 years. I believe I had it since my teens but it wasn’t recognized. At that point, as my doctor said, it was pretty rare. I am certain that I got it from nuclear radiation. I was born within hours of the Hiroshima bomb and just before the Nagasaki one. I’ve done a lot of research on this. Most of my support group members and hotline callers were also born when nuclear radiation was travelling around the world. The American Cancer Association lied about it causing thyroid and other cancers until about 15 years ago when they confessed.

    Janie and I have had some communication over the years. She is doing what I had been planning to do. It’s fortunate that she came along, because I think she is doing a far better job of it than I would have.

    The thyroid issue has been epic in my life. In reality, it stole my life, and I resent that very much.

    I would like to see it go to the next level where we create a foundation, our own clinic and hire our own doctors who will only be hired if they’ve done the work to understand the issue the way we do and who won’t stand in the way of our health, who won’t dose dictated by TSH, who will use desiccated thyroid as the first line of defence and much more.

    Thank you for reading to the end, if you have. I’ll leave you with a delightful fact. Early in the past century, doctors would spend far more time with their thyroid patients to achieve the euthroid level. Some doctors would even go so far as to live with patients in their homes to observe them more closely for a few weeks. From that era is what has supplied the doctors of today with a lot of information on the topic. And yet today’s doctors can’t be bothered.

    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Hi Morgen. 🙂

      • Morgen

        Hi, Janie…

        • Em

          I would like to do this.

          I’m not a doctor, but I am a nurse, and I’d like to get my nurse practitioner’s license in California.

          Like many here, I was told for many years that being at the top of the TSH range, (borderline), was totally normal, and my symptoms were in my head. It created so much resentment of doctors that I couldn’t, (and still can’t), enter a doctor’s office as a patient without my blood pressure spiking through the roof because I already know an argument is coming or a huge disappointment.

          The more I studied endocrinology, however, the more I realized that I was a prime hypothyroid candidate. I have Type 1 Diabetes mellitus, (the autoimmune, youth-associated diabetes), and my mother was hypothyroid while pregnant. She became hyperthyroid after delivery, but while pregnant, she was placed on a grape nuts only diet (“WHUT?! For a pregnant woman?!” – was my reaction). I live in Southern California, but it’s not uncommon for me to take a hooded sweatshirt everywhere i go because under 80 degrees, I become very chilly. My husband laughs at me, as I’m from the northeast, where it gets very cold, and he is from California and is never cold like I am.

          I’m easily irritated though I don’t experience the brain fog that many others suffer. For whatever reason, my organizational ability and mental function was spared. However, I’m always depressed, (which doctors for many decades blamed on my diabetes), which I respond to by taking aggressive action to fight against the things that make me depressed.

          My hair is thin, but I’m blonde, so everyone wrote it off. Prior to moving to California, I had critically low vitamin D levels (3 ng/mL), which since moving has increased to 42 ng/mL, which is STILL very low given the amount of sun I get. As I’m sure everyone knows, adequate vitamin D is needed to properly utilize thyroid hormones. My nails are yellowed. My face is puffy.

          For years I absolutely could NOT lose weight. I was told “eat less!” by doctors, but I was already eating less than 1100 calories per day and running cross country. I was also on the diabetic exchange diet, which is VERY high in carbs. In my early 20s, I found low carb, and I *DID* finally lose some weight. However, people remark to this day that they’re shocked at how little I eat and how very restrictive my diet is. I eat less than 30g net carbs.

          After my blood pressure spiked out of control at my last office visit, and I had a ridiculously high LDL return, I bought Thyroid-S NDT and told no one. While I wouldn’t normally condone this, especially being a nurse, this is the result of connecting the dots between all these symptoms and YEARS of being told that my hypothyroidism is all in my head. I’m acting aggressively.

          I never want another person to experience the ambivalence that I have and would like to specialize in thyroid disorders and Type 1 diabetes (that is a whole separate can of worms to open up with me). Thank you so much for making this site. I thought I was the only one.

          • Em

            ps. At this point, I’m also afraid for my heart and hoping that the Thyroid-S will help me attain normal cholesterol levels. My HDL was “okay”, not as high as I would have liked, but my total cholesterol and LDL were so out of range that my doctor called me to specifically say, “You need to be on Statins now!”

            Unfortunately, I’m also trying to have a baby with my husband, so I had to tell the doctor that there was no way this way happening. She didn’t even mention my high TSH levels until I asked. At this point, she said, it was “borderline high” and not to worry!

          • Janie Bowthorpe

            Hi Em and nope, you are definitely NOT alone. Your experience has been the experience of SO many patients that we’ve had no choice but to support the myriad of thyroid patients who feel forced to self-treat, or who can’t stand to walk into their clueless doctors offices. We’re glad you found STTM!

          • Janie Bowthorpe

            By the way, Em, this is why the latest STTM II book came out. It’s written by doctors and supports the use of Natural Desiccated Thyroid, why the TSH is a lousy test to go by, and more. i.e. no more can doctors ignore what we know to be true when their own colleagues are telling them the same thing in this book. Granted, it won’t have all the details that the revised STTM book has (and which they will need to learn), but it definitely gets the point across about important topics.

    • liza hoskins

      i wish someone would help me. last month my level was 0,357 now today it is 6.970 i cant hardly exist and no one will help me.
      my thyroid was removed 5 years ago and i had a pill. please help me someone.

    • Colleen J Doyle

      It’s 2016 and the first time reading an article that explains my entire life since I wàs 15yo in 1967. The timing is right for Proloid vs generic drugs. The confirmation of mistreatment. Thank you so much for relieving my mind and body for the affirmation that I was never crazy or lazy. Or dumb that I could never explain why. I just began an NDT one week ago. I have such high hopes.

  4. Ruby

    I have just gotten started into self treating myself for my symptoms. I had bloodwork which shows I do have problems with my thyroid and I am now taking Desiccated Thyroid. Getting ready to up the dosage. It is just so hard to find a doctor who understands how to treat a patient with thyroid symptoms and then for me to feel good about asking for specific further tests. I just wish there were more doctors who are educated in the way to treat this illness by how a patient feels from treatment and able to up dosages as they feel better. I am searching for a doctor who will help me to help myself get better. I like the idea of a foundation where a person could get bloodwork done and help with prescribing what we need to treat ourselves. We can learn to treat ourselves.

    • Mimi Wade

      How are you treating yourself? I am under the impression that the NDT’s are available only by Rx. ???

  5. Douglas

    Great article! I shall give it to my doctor. Oh, the first link above under point #2 doesn’t work. We need a new link.

  6. Cathyo

    Thank you for this article. I have had hashimotos for 20 years (diagnosed for14 years). This letter explains my problems. I am going to send it to my family in the hope that it gives them a new understanding of the disease and willl help some of them who are also improperly diagnosed. Through STTM website info I hope to start proper treatment in 2 weeks.

    • Rachel

      Totally agree with you. The letter is brilliant and I’ll also be passing it onto my family and taking a copy to my Doctor.

  7. Margery Entwisle

    What an incredible letter. So well written with admirable restraint. I hope everyone knows that there is a Good Doc list in the Files at Janie’s Yahoo group, Natural Thyroid Hormones. The list is based on feedback from patients, who recommend doctors to be included on the list based on criteria determined by Janie. You have to request membership, and can find the list here: And, if you are patient, and have a doctor you’d like to recommend based on your experiences with this doctor, please email me at

  8. Anns Higgins

    Last month I been craving salt. I been weak ..tense..unable slur speech not all the time… trembling inside my body….I have a doctors appointment this month on making my doctor understand what I am trying to tell him…your article hit home I search a month on this I thought I was going crazy can u give me any advice.thank you.

  9. Concepcion Benson (Connie)

    First I have to apologize to Stop Thyroid Madness ‏@STTM Aug 12
    @ConnieBe4 How do you need help? Have you visited ? You could also buy the book. this was all on twitter..At that time, these were my conditions: I have been very ill and back in August I was having horrible gastrointestinal problems, and this was after I had my gall bladder removed about 6 months before the intestinal problem. I have been going crazy for at least 4 years been through at least 2 sets of doctors from primary care doctors, to specialist in cardiology, gastroenteralogist, and pulmonary, dermatologists, rheumatoid, and a psychotherapist for depression and stress. I am sick and tired of being sick and tired and fighting with doctors to give me the right tests, mainly because I don’t know what they are or how to ask for them and then being told by the doctors that I just need to take medication prescribed which was Synthroid/Levothyroxine. Well, i did take the medicine and in 3 to 4 months I developed ulcers at top of my stomach and in my esophagus, I was missing so much work and truly anything I ate at that point made me nauseated and horrendous heartburn, vomiting, it was awful. I had chest pains, I am wheezing and have consequently gained so much weight that I honestly think that is why I wheeze and snort. From 140 lbs to now 205 lbs and I am only 5’3″. My joints hurt most of the time and my feet swell,,, and on and on….

    I truly like the letter I read from the RN and wish that my doctor would take the time to read this but she is too busy..although she seems to want to help but I have had a battery of tests and xrays and now I am having to get my thyroid biopsied with yet another ENT doctor,,,. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Disease back in August of 2012 and put on synthroid.levothyroxine and that made me sicker than I don’t know what. . Long story short I am now on Armour Thyroid and have been for the past 3 months now going on stomach issues have been addressed and I now do not get heartburn and vomiting but to be honest with you I don’t really see how it is going to help me to lose the weight even though I follow a healthy proportionate diet, I lose 3 to 4 pounds but it just comes right back… I still eat healthy but this is insane. I feel so defeated by this whole mess.

  10. Spencer Nadolsky, DO

    Hi Janie! Hopefully you remember me (fresh new osteopathic family doctor). There is a paradigm shift back towards t4/t3 (whether it be natural or synthroid plus cytomel). Need not worry! The literature is coming out slowly but surely. I have even met a few endos who agree 🙂

    • Janie Bowthorpe

      I do remember you! So good to hear from you again. And the paradigm shift you are seeing is hopeful. Physicians have been in an alien, twilight zone world when it comes to thyroid treatment and it’s beyond time for them to come back to earth and LISTEN to their patients and reality. Glad you are out there. 🙂

  11. Yvonne

    Janie, Dawn’s letter is outstanding! Like much of the material on STTM, the letter has a large amount of useful information in one place and is educational. Everyone should read it, along with the linked studies. I’m saving it into a document and will pass it along to friends, always including the link to STTM. Thank you for sharing the letter with all of us.

  12. Juley

    This link is not working:

  13. Jeanette

    Hello and thanks so very much for posting this. It made me cry because I have been wanting to do the same – get information out there to challenge the doctors who are just not listening to their patients. The crying, well, that could just be because my hormones are unbalanced as I am still sorting out my thyroid issues after living 16 years with Hashimoto’s! I am also a registered nurse and have been trying to find a way to challenge a lot of the information that is out there regarding Desiccated Porcine Hormone (DPH) and, in fact, how complex it is to get to that euthyroid state. I believe many Dr’s here just do not have the knowledge or training to help. There are a lot of naturopathic studies to support what you have declared above but many doctors will not adhere to any of it because it is not supported or minimally supported, by medical research. There are also many patients out there who are living proof that DPH resolves their ongoing symptoms and in so doing, changes their lives, where synthetic replacement has previously failed them. Therefore, I can’t understand how the pharmaceutical companies are winning. There are luckily a couple of forward thinking doctors here in Perth who are leading the way and helping many people live happier, healthier lives. Always willing to help in any way, to get the information out there. Thanks again for sharing this information.

    • Natalie

      Would you be willing to share the names of the forward-thinking doctors in Perth? Thank you! 🙂

      • Gabrielle

        Yes please! Perth Dr who doesn’t roll their eyes at me needed! 😆

  14. Debbie Stevens

    Can someone please refer me to a physician in the Columbus, Ohio area that has more progressive thinking in the areas of thyroid and adrenal hormone level imbalances? I had a subtotal thyroidectomy for hyperthyroidism at age 24. I am on Armour 60 mg and some other meds. I am so drained on my days off work. It’s very hard to wake up. It seems that all I do is work and sleep. I was like this years ago, but got better for a while. Now it’s back again. I am a married 59 year old RN with a big family and I want to feel normal. Thank you very much!

  15. Katherine

    I was diagnosed with Grave’s in 2006 and started taking synthroid after having radio ablation treatment. Two years ago, I started taking cytomel (T3) as well. I talked to my doctor about trying NDT because I still don’t feel right. She said that NDT can be a problem with Grave’s patients because since it’s an autoimmune disease, my body might produce antibodies to the meds. Has anyone else heard anything about this? Does anyone with Grave’s take NDT?

    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Katherine, there are lots of folks who once had Graves and who do wonderfully on NDT. Docs don’t get this. And by the way, you need to b sure you have good iron and cortisol levels to do your very best on NDT. 🙂

    • John

      Katherine, I have heard of this theory, that since the thyroid is under attack, the body will also attack Dessicated Thyroid as well. Jerry Tennant mentioned this in the end of “Hypothyroidism Type 2,” and I’ve heard that even Broda Barnes thought that autoimmune thyroid conditions had to be treated with the synthetics. And they maybe correct, but I would think that it would be due to the issues Janie mentioned or leaky gut. So if I were in your situation, I would look into the issues Janie brings up and also look into diets like either GAPS or a Paleo type Autoimmune protocol. My guess is that NDT plus fixing those issues would be superior to taking the synthetics, but that synthetics may work better if those issues aren’t addressed.

      • Janie Bowthorpe

        STTM is more about patients experiences. And yes, we do see the antibodies increase with the introduction of NDT. But we also see them fall as one goes up and up with NDT towards their optimal dose, possibly due to the fact that the direct T3 is reaching the immune system, and every cell of one’s immune function needs T3 to perform correctly. Others with more stubborn antibodies use selenium, or iodine (yes, many swear by the use of iodine in lowering antibodies!) or Low Dose Naltrexone. So no, we have not found the need to use synthetics with Hashi’s across the board. MANY folks with Hashi’s soar on NDT if they use it correctly (i.e go high enough), use the other supplements mentioned, and correct cortisol and iron issues correctly.

  16. Lin

    The two structures that you claim to be different are actually the same! They are just differently written. Often you don´t write the carbon (C) and and the hydrogen (H), they are just indicated by a bent line. The Na+ is connected to the molecule by an ion bond and therefore just losely connected, just like the H in the other molecule. The manufacturer has probably chosen to use Na as it is a stable ion and it does not harm the body (it is present in in the human body, we have it everyday as salt, NaCl, that also divides into ions in water: Na+ and Cl- immidietely in contact with water. We don´t have any NaCl in our bodies, just the ions). The choice of Na probably gives the molecyle stable properties when dry, but it will for sure come loose as soon as the molecule comes into water-or into our bodies. So, the Na+ will be just a loose ion, like H+ in the other molcule. A COOH-group in water always lets go of the H and all positive ions are therefore possible to connect losely to. The final xH2O just shows us that the molecule likes to surround itself with a number of water molecule, and it is not interesting to know how many, it is just interesting to know that they are present. The molecules are the same.

  17. Mary Lindley

    I live in Walker Co. Al. We do not even have a endo . Dr. Also I have no ins . Yet , I can’t take much more of this, the clinic I am using does not have a clue, & a nurse there is just plain mean!

  18. Sally

    I too had graves disease about 10 years ago. I had RI therapy and was on synthroid for 10 years. My biggest complaints were horrible brain fog and exhaustion. I have have always been very “sharp” and a fast thinker. The brain fog has made me think I can no longer do my job as it is demanding and requires mental clarity.

    I have been on Armour for the last 5 months. Started on 60 mg, stayed on that dose for 4 months(dr’s order), felt really good for about 10 days, then good for about another 10 days. I went downhill from there. I had blood work after 4 months and was extremely hypo. The doc increased me to 90mg, but he thought I would want to go back to synthroid since it worked better for me ( ie…lab results were within “normal” range on synthroid). I was adamant that I wanted to try an increased dose of Armour. I have been on the 90 mg for 21 days and have have a few WONDERFULLY normal days but I am starting to feel hypo again. I have added small amounts of Armour ( about 15 mg) on a few days but sometimes it makes me jittery and I have achiness in my arms. I now know there is hope to feel normal again but want to have all good days rather than a few here and there. My doc has already warned me that if my levels come back in the “hyper” range, he will decrease the dosage immediately. I do have an appointment with a GP female doc in about 3 weeks and she has done research on women’s health issues with a special interest in thyroid issues.

    Any advice I could get would be welcomed…. I want to have my life back!!!

  19. Lenore

    I live in Northern Arkansas we have no Endocronologists here at all. We are closest to Springfield, Mo but I am willing to travel anywhere to find a doctor who will help me. I have had problems with my thyroid since I was a teenager, I also have adrenal problems, is there a doctor out there anyone can recommend. Any help is appreciated.

  20. Kathy Strong

    I found an ND who started me on a combination compounded thyroid at 1 grain as well as DHEA, Estradiol; Progesterone, Testosterone, but I developed an allergic reaction so she had me go off everything one by one until I was only on the thyroid medicine. She then had me try several different tyroid brands with the same allergic reaction of bad itching on my head and back with symptoms intensifying to other parts of the body with continued use. So I found a compounding pharmacy that used Acidophilus as a filler and that seems to help. But my last lab tests showed my T3 level to be “way too high” (It went from 3.8 to 5.9) according to my doctor. She lowered my dose to 50 mcg of Levothyroxine (T4) and 12.5 mcgt of Liothyronine (T3).
    I am so tired I can hardly function I wake up every night multiple times with night sweats and have hot flashes all day long, after reading your book I ordered the Adrenal Saliva Test, here are the results I am 53 years old: DHEA 4.0; Morning Cortisol 3.8; Noon Cortisol 2.3; Evening Cortisol 1.3; and Night Cortisol 0.7. I’m reading this to say my levels are all too low so I would need to try the hydrocortisone protecol. I am looking for a doctor to help with this, I met with one today who referred me to an endocrinologist which I’m not going to do. Have you heard of Dr. Jonathon Wright at the Tahoma Clinic in Washington State? I also believe I have leaky gut syndrome and am wondering should I try to start the no sugar/no wheat diet for that at the same time as healing the adrenal disfunction? Also, how do you figure out how much of the T3 and T4 you take with low adrenal function? Last, should the hot flashes and other symtoms go away when I am on the right amounts of thyroid and the adrenal glands are working properly or should I try to go back on the natural hormones as well? With the brain fog, I am so confused and would greatly appreciate any feedback. If you think there is too much to deal with on here I will set up a phone call with you. Thanks in advance!!!

  21. Simon

    Only the natural source raw thyroid works for me and many of my patients. I admit it, it is true, in my clinical experience. The raw thyroid formulas seem to work better, with less side effects and in more cases, covering more issues than synthetic options.

  22. Sherre Lytle

    I am crying as I type, hurt everywhere, have the fog-depression-confusion so bad I am at times suicidal in prayer begging God to just make it all stop! I am 49 on March 15th my husband found this site for me. I am ordering your book as my “last option” to attempt a last chance at healing or hell to just at least try one more time. Ive had Graves since age 23-25, have so many other diagnoses theyr too many to type. Was on Levo since first graves dx but my last “good physician” was fired from clinic and this new doc DEMANDED I come in for refill visit and he switched me to synthroid 150mg wich i am on my 2nd day on, feel ALL symotoms, pain bad, nausea, shaking, sweating on + on i go. Ty for listenkng! I pray this is a real site as I am ordering your book n going bak to bed to pray and wait for the mailman after I take my 15 mg pain med thank you Pmease God please be real

    • carol van linda

      this medicine and book can and will change your life we have all been whre you are and are now doing so much better thanks to this site hang in there we “get it”

  23. Roger M. Wilcox

    Just for the record, I know something about organic chemistry, and those first two molecule pictures shown above (for Synthroid vs. natural Thyroxine) are NEARLY IDENTICAL. They’re just drawn using two different systems of molecular notation. The only difference is the presence of that hydrated sodium (Na + H2O) on the far right end of the synthroid molecule, which is absent on the thyroxine molecule.

  24. James

    Thanks for telling us about the natural dessicated thyroid – my Dr has not even mentioned this to me. So Thank you.

  25. Ren Gron

    Thank you for this. I live in a quiet little valley and there aren’t any “enlightened ” doctors here. I.e., I’m trapped. Your letter will help, I hope.

  26. Jewel

    On point #8 at the bottom: “Jaine Bowthorpe has compiled several reasons why NDT doesn’t seem to works……” It should be ‘work’….. just trying to help 🙂

  27. Christine

    Hi everybody. I am just at my wits end with doctors. They just do not want to give you enough NDT to feel better! Does anyone know where I can order it online. PLEASE send me a private message. THANK YOU!

  28. Dr. D

    Hi. I’m an endocrinologist in South Florida. I just had to pipe up here to share my experiences. In my training, I was taught to only use levothyroxine. As the years went by, I did notice that some people do respond to dessicated thyroid hormone much better than synthetic. But, NOT EVERYBODY.

    I have found about 90% of my patents (both autoimmune and post-surgical hypothyroidism) feel just fine with levothyroxine. They have no complaints of fatigue, brain-fog, constipation, etc. They’re happy for therapy and feel just fine. They go about their life with good energy and smile on their face. About 10-15% of people on levothyroxine, however, still have complaints consistent with hypothyroidism. The “brain-fog” complaint is a common one, along with weight gain and fatigue. In this 10-15%, I offer Armour or Nature-Throid. In my experience, about 1/3 of the patients given Armour LOVE it. The brain fog is gone, they weight comes off a little easier;….they are happy. But, another 1/3 given Armour or Nature-Throid feel TERRIBLE…anxiety, palpitations, tremor, they can’t sleep (yes, at a variety of different doses)…they beg to get off the stuff and try something else…

    Dessicated thyroid hormone should be an OPTION, yes. But in spite of what you read on the internet, it’s not for everyone. I think it’s because T3 wasn’t meant to be ingested, so when it hits the blood stream there’s no escape mechanism for makes a significant proportion of us sick. It seems that those that have a bad reaction to dessicated thyroid hormone aren’t motivated to get on the ‘net and write about it. All you see on the internet is people who’ve responded well to the hormone.

    So…I think both forms have value. It shouldn’t be just one or the other…try levothyroxine (I suggest to my patients they should try levothyroxine first and see how they feel, then try dessicated as a 2nd option due to my concerns about T3 possible harmful effect on heart and bone). People that say Synthroid should be outlawed are WRONG, and people that say dessicated should be outlawed are WRONG. Medicine is NOT one size fits all. Just because patient “A” had a great outcome with Armour doesn’t mean it will be a fit for patient “B”. I wish more of the alternative thyroid doctors thought the same.

    • Janie Bowthorpe

      Hi Dr. D. We’re very glad to see you have posted here. And you’re brave, because for thyroid patients, most Endocrinologists have been the worst doctors for thyroid treatment they have ever had. 🙁 So we’re glad you, for one, are open to the option of NDT. Good for you!

      Let me explain to you some of what we’ve learned repeatedly as thyroid patients….for one, those 90% you say are fine…are probably not as fine as you think. There are going to be a high percentage of those who are either now on other meds to treat the poor results of treating with only one of five hormones (i.e. depression, rising BP, rising cholesterol, aches and pains….etc) or they are going to see those problems inch their way in the longer they stay on levothyroxine. We…see…this..repeatedly, Dr. D.

      And no, we haven’t had issues with T3 being ingested, nor has it made “a significant proportion of us sick”. Yes, it’s a powerful hormone, but that is why we start low, such as one grain, and raise by a small amount (1/2 grain) every two weeks. See this:

      No one is saying it should only be “one or the other” and we definitely do not agree that it should be outlawed, even if someone exclaims that out of extreme frustration of what it did to them. But what we as informed thyroid patients have found is that most of us should never be started on one of five thyroid hormones. Thyroxine has made millions miserable, sooner or later. It’s a lousy way to treat hypothyroidism for all too many.

      And by the way, there are clear reasons why “Patient B” may not do as well. The first is when doctors hold “patient B” to the TSH lab test. That is a lousy way to treat hypothyroidism. Also read the chapter in the STTM II book written by one your esteemed colleagues about the TSH. Second, here’s the reason why so many don’t do well at first on NDT: The latter link is VERY important to understand.

      We’re GLAD you have posted, and we hope you will learn from us, because there is more for you to learn! And as you do, you’ll end up being a VERY popular Endocrinologist for thyroid patients instead of those we are constantly firing!!

  29. Robin

    Do you know of a way that I can work with a specialist, virtually? I have just moved, do not have a doctor and am out of my thyroid medication. I have hypothyroid issues and have been on medication for 30+ years. I had to change from armour to levothyroxine for insurance purposes at Kaiser. But, I would like to work with someone who can prescribe lab tests and then armour. Do you have any suggestions? Thank you!!

  30. Lucy Weaving

    Thank you so much for this, I will be taking this to my endocrinology appointment next week. I would also like to take another letter that I saw on the sttm Facebook page but I can’t find a link to it anywhere…. Any ideas? Thanks x

  31. sandy

    I have had problems for 35 yrs and finally going to an endro dr this week.keep fingers crossed for me please to get this madness stopped.thanks

  32. cindy wood

    Just found out I have a nodule in my right side, significant size and also have symptoms of hypothyrodism. Cant see a endrocrenologist until June 16th. Reading everything above i am scared of the outcome. I am not one for taking meds unless I have a life threatening diagnosis. Can natural plant base supplements help with hypothyrodism? Non GMO Natural Products?

  33. Felicidad Børresen

    I”m enterested in ur book ,how much it “ll cost?

  34. Priti Shah

    Great letter which echoes what a lot of us are going through. This issue really needs to be tackled from many different angles especially to the highest decision making points which the physicians are unfortunately not. Physicians especially in the UK have to follow NICE guidelines and can do very little themselves without fear of being reprimanded / struck off. The more pressure we apply by finding a watchdog-like body that can raise this then something may get done.


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