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Levoxyl is a prescription medication designed to treat hypothyroidism. How does it work and what makes it different from other thyroid medication?
There are different medications and supplements that are recommended for hypothyroidism, and one of them is Levoxyl. But, what exactly is this drug? How does it work and what are the things that you need to know before taking it?
Hypothyroidism, or low thyroid production is a condition that occurs naturally to a lot of people. This means that their thyroids cannot produce enough or can no longer produce thyroid hormones, which are essential in maintaining the body’s wellbeing.
Aside from naturally occurring hypothyroidism, some individuals develop the condition due to specific causes, which include:
Because thyroid hormones are important for proper mental and physical activity, it is very important to replace the thyroid hormones which the thyroid gland cannot produce, and this is done by taking prescription drugs such as Levoxyl or natural thyroid supplements such as Thyax.
Levoxyl’s main ingredient is levothyroxine or synthetic T4 hormone. This is the chemical equivalent of the naturally occurring T4 hormone produced by the thyroid gland.
Aside from the active ingredient, Levoxyl contains binders. Binders are necessary ingredients in plenty of medications, but they do not really affect the effectiveness of the drug. These include croscarmellose sodium, magnesium stearate and microcrystalline cellulose. Color additives are also used for some of the tablets.
The dosage for Levoxyl is determined by one’s doctor, and is dependent on the patient’s age, weight, severity of the condition, existing medical conditions and intake of other medications and drugs.
The average daily dose for full replacement is approximately 1.7 micrograms per kilogram body weight. Older patients may require less dosage while younger patients and children may require more. Pregnant women, too, may require more than the average dose.
Once the doctor determines a specific dosage, the patient can eventually start the treatment. The treatment usually involves the intake of Levoxyl once a day, each and every day. The recommended time to take the drug is first thing in the morning, right before breakfast. This is done because specific types of food and liquids interfere with the body’s intake of levothyroxine.
The medication should be taken with a full glass of water – unless otherwise directed by one’s doctor. It should be taken at the same time each day to produce the best effects.
When taking Levoxyl, patients should take the tablet whole and should not crush, split or chew it. In the case of infants and children who may have problems swallowing whole tablets, parents can crush the tablet and mix it with one or two teaspoons of water. The preparation should be given immediately and should not be made in advance.
Levoxyl comes in different dosages, with colors indicating the dosage and strength of the tablet. The tablets have doses ranging from 25 to 200 micrograms and come in the colors white, blue, green yellow, peach, pink and purple.
Like any other kind of prescription medication, Levoxyl can cause side effects. There are only two common side effects that were noted among many users and these are difficulty in getting pregnant (for women) and hair loss.
Aside from the two common side effects, other Levoxyl side effects are quite rare with majority of the users of the product. While the side effects are not really common occurrences among users – there are still rare cases when they can manifest.
Less Severe Symptoms
When these rare symptoms do occur, notify the doctor right away.
A lot of people use Levoxyl because they think that it can help them lose weight. While Levoxyl does increase thyroid hormone production, which in turn speeds up the body’s metabolism, the medication is not intended for weight loss. In fact, using Levoxyl in the absence of thyroid problems can even cause adverse reactions and side effects.
All in all, Levoxyl is quite similar to other levothyroxine prescription medications – but still, you should never switch from one brand to another without the recommendation of your doctor.
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Thyax is a natural thyroid remedy that can help stimulate thyroid hormone levels naturally.