Thursday, January 20, 2011

Taking Levothyroxine at Bedtime May be Best for hypothyroid patients

According to new research, those who take levothyroxine, a synthetic thyroid hormone, at bedtime may cut their levels of the thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) thyrotropin as well as boost free thyroxine (F4 hormone) and triiodothyronine (T3 hormone) levels in patients with hypothyroidism, according to Endocrine Today.

For the study, researchers at Maastad Hospital Rotterdam in the Netherlands divided patients with hypothyroidism into two groups. For three months, some participants received a placebo in the morning and one capsule of levothyroxine at bedtime, while others were given levothyroxine in the morning and placebo at bedtime. After three months, the groups switched treatments.

The results showed that those who received levothyroxine at bedtime decreased TSH levels compared to those who were given the pill in the morning. This method of delivery also increased F4 and T3 levels.

"After our study was completed, more than half of the patients decided to continue with bedtime intake of levothyroxine," the researchers wrote, reports the news source.

According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, levothyroxine is used to treat hypothyroidism. Without this hormone, the body cannot function properly, resulting in poor growth, slow speech, lack of energy, weight gain, hair loss, dry skin and increased sensitivity to cold.

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