Four days ago, I was finally able to compose a blog post about two issues: that something fishy/suspicious seemed to be going on with Armour desiccated thyroid for a certain body of hypothyroid or Hashimoto’s patients. Plus some comments were also going around that needed better balance.
For anyone new to this topic and scratching your head about any part above:
1) Armour is a brand prescription of porcine desiccated thyroid that has been around for many, many decades. It was, in fact, the only most successful hypothyroid treatment.
2) Desiccated Thyroid has all five hormones (T4, T3, T2, T1 and calcitonin) and has been changing lives all over again since the turn of this century, unlike T4-only which appeared to be a poor treatment for too many patients since 1960.
3) Over the past few years, Armour was the only desiccated thyroid that patients reported was still working, unlike what patients were reporting about Naturethroid, WP Thyroid, and NP Thyroid. And all three of the latter were recalled with most strengths after numerous patient complaints!
What has been brewing about Armour desiccated thyroid?
Turns out that some patients, in different locations, have been noticing and reporting a downhill slide with Armour, whereas before, they didn’t have those problems. For some on the same dose, their labs plummeted, and in this group, there were occasional posted labs to prove it. Other patients in this group simply noticed a strange return of symptoms after doing well for quite awhile.
The other problem
Unfortunately, a strong statement was also going around that Armour was working for “NO ONE”!! But that was unbalanced and false. For those who were paying attention, there have been another body of patients who are still reporting and experiencing Armour as working, and found the latter statement of “NO ONE” insulting to their own experience. And some of these patients have labs to prove it is still working, too.
Is there a possibility that a large body of us will find Armour not working like it used to? Yes. It happened before in 2009. Yet, even with the latter, and even though it appeared to be a huge percentage who had problems in 2009, there were STILL a minority who claimed they were still fine. Patient experiences DO HAVE gray areas.
Today, no one is a magical soothsayer. And with a variety of opposite patient experiences going on, we are nowhere near being able to claim that Armour is currently working for NO ONE. We need time and more experiences to truly figure out what is going on.
Four Armour Exploration posts were created on the Stop the Thyroid Madness (STTM) facebook page
Below are mention of the four graphic questions. Keep in mind that STTM is not, nor am I, a polling business. This is informal. But it doesn’t take away what we are getting from the comments to each question.
For each question below that was posted on the STTM Facebook page, I also refer here and there to the two camps: those who experienced clear changes vs those who experience still doing well. When you see reference to “optimal“, this refers to having a free T3 in the upper part of the range, and the free T4 around midrange–an important goal we learned about years ago. If we don’t get optimal, our good results eventually backfire. We wanted to differentiate backfiring from not being optimal, to backfiring due to Armour having changed for the negative.
QUESTION #1: Asking where people live who had optimal frees, then redid labs on the same amount of Armour, and now saw their labs were messed up.
This was an attempt to see if locations are common for those who once had optimal labs, then on the same amount and new labs, saw negative changes in their lab results. Before each below will be either GREEN square (representing those experiencing Armour still working), a RED square (representing those whose labs shows a solid experience of a changed Armour) or a BLUE square (representing either a neutral statement, a statement without enough proof, a statement that didn’t fit what the graphic was asking for, or other.)
Had a few state a negative change to labs, but there were problems identifying this as Armour being bad. For example, one possibly had high RT3 (didn’t test it) and another suspected a nodule changing her labs.
One stated she felt she was good, then moved to T4/T3, but we don’t have enough information as she didn’t post labs or go into more detail.
One guy did mention that all labs are showing optimal and have for four years. (Wish we could have seen the labs, but four years is strong). Another gal said basically the same, but no labs. More positive comments like this under the “other” below.
A gal mentioned feeling achy, but no thyroid labs to help explain why and could be about low iron. So better info is needed.
Two gals mentioned previous optimal labs, then they went off. One of the two mentioned she’s getting adrenals checked before saying what caused it.
A gal found herself with “crazy high T3”. Another was over range. But more needs to be explored, as a cortisol problem can do that, too.
One gal had symptoms and raising did nothing, so she stopped the Armour. (What we can’t discern with this is were her raises still too low, which would do nothing for her. Need better info to have a strong lean.)
Another gal says she was stable for years on Armour, then her labs were abnormally low in May and June.
A gal in Ireland experiences all is fine, but no labs for more solid proof.
One gal states optimal on 4 grains plus 25mcg T3. This has been mentioned a few times before and makes you wonder if adding T3 to Armour is a good idea right now. Thus the green.
QUESTION #2: If you are in the camp still experiencing good results with Armour, where do you live?
This is an attempt to discern if locations (i.e. where certain lots of Armour were sent) would explain why some experience still doing well on Armour.
Answers all over the map, though in the US, there were more in the east than the west, and only some in the middle area of the US. Other countries were represented, too, as STTM is for worldwide experiences. This did not give us any definitive answer.
QUESTION #3: This was to see if those who experienced a change in Armour had noticed a change in the tablets.
Then the following comments:
- No changes from Texas.
- No changes in any way for over a year.
- Tastes the same, same shape, same size (and seems to be working)
- Same size; same smell.
- Same smell, but looked and tasted different.
- Felt better on a different script of Armour, but all were the same with the tabs size, smell, etc.
- Pills from Dec. 2020 and May 2021 are different (now darker in color and less depth). This fits the photo above.
- Gal said the new ones are smaller, but no photo produced to give confirmation. You could say the photo with the newer bottle pill on the left is “smaller” in depth.
- A gal states the working tablets smelled like roasted meat; new ones are medicinal/chemical. But she can’t verify it was Armour. (Would like to hear more feedback from others.)
- Last month’s tablets dissolve quickly. This month have to bite in to dissolve. This could also fit what we’re seeing in the photo, as right one (older one) looks chalkier, and new one looks firmer.
QUESTION #4: This question asked how much Armour you have been/are on, and to see labs (free T4, free T3 and RT3) from both camps: those who experienced a negative change in their symptoms with labs to prove it, and those who still experienced doing quite well, and with labs.
Unfortunately and as seen often in groups, getting labs posted can be like trying to suck a thick malted ice cream through a skinny straw. It’s challenging. But below is what we got….
Lots of comments that had nothing to do with labs. But the labs posted showed either potential pooling, or not optimal, or lowered T4 due to rising RT3, or simply a too high RT3. Hard to come to conclusions.
MISCELLANEOUS REPLIES THAT DIDN’ T ALWAYS FIT THE QUESTION, but still interesting…
- On 240 mg Armour for years and no problems. No labs.
- Doing well on Armour.
- From Sweden: Doing good on 240 mg Armour plus 20 mg T3. Another positive response when using both. Hmmmmm
- Some negative replies about Armour that may be more about underdosing. All were pretty low. So not strong enough information.
- At least FOUR different people commenting that ARMOUR IS WORKING WITH SOME T3.
- One interesting comment wondering if COVID did this to a lot of people who have had sudden negative problems.
- One gal feels like a mess with 180mg five days a week, 360mg two days a week. Odd dosing for sure!
- Doing great on 360 mg twice a day and 25 T3 twice a day. (She may have Thyroid Hormone resistance, thus the high amounts. 8 years of of doing great, which is strong for Armour working for her)
- At least three comments for “No issues”. Another comment for “No difference”
The four Armour Exploratory graphic questions underscored the same situation going on for awhile: differences in experiences, meaning one camp experiencing Armour has changed for the negative, and another camp experiencing still doing quite fine on Armour. So looks like we need more time, more reports.
In the meantime, those who went downhill can definitely consider switching to using synthetic T4 with synthetic T3. And do know that people are using different brands of each successfully. And it continues to be important to learn this page: https://stopthethyroidmadness.com/optimal
Others may end up adding T3 to that Armour, but it will be important to have the right amount of cortisol, we as informed patients know first hand. Raising T3 in the presence of a cortisol problem all too frequently results in hyper-like symptoms as T3 climbs high in the blood without the right amount of cortisol. The right amount of cortisol helps that T3 attach to cell receptors. Here’s a saliva cortisol test you can order: https://saliva-cortisol.squarespace.com/
So we’ll all keep an eye out over time.