Results of a double-blind test of T-3 therapy.

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by matthewson, Aug 14, 2005.

  1. matthewson

    matthewson New Member

    D0ble-Blind Clinical Trials

    ! Effectiveness and safety of T3 (triiodothyronine) therapy for euthyroid fibromyalgia: a double-blind placebo-controlled response-driven crossover study. John C. Lowe, MA, DC, Richard L. Garrison, MD, Alan J. Reichman, MD, Jackie Yellin, BA, Mervianna Thompson, RN, MSN, APN, Daniel Kaufman, MD: Clinical Bulletin of Myofascial Therapy, 2(2/3):31-58, 1997.

    Background. Clinical features of fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) resemble those of hypothyroidism although some patients have normal thyroid function tests results. The hypothyroid-like FMS features of these patients may result from partial cellular resistance to thyroid hormone. We treated euthyroid FMS patients with T3 to see if they would respond as do patients with peripheral thyroid hormone resistance syndrome: significant therapeutic effects with supraphysiologic dosages, without target tissue responses typical of thyrotoxicosis.

    Methods. Seven patients were alternately treated with T3 and placebo over an 8-month period.
    Phase crossover was response-driven, based on changes in measures of mean tender point sensitivity by algometry, mean symptom intensity by visual analog scales, and mean pain distribution by the percentage method and the ACR criteria. Testing for adverse responses to supraphysiologic dosages of T3 was performed for heart, bone, muscle, and liver.

    Results. Significant therapeutic effects were shown in T3 phases compared to placebo phases on all measures of FMS status. Effective T3 dosages were supraphysiologic, and ranged from 93.75-to-150 µg. Available patients had maintained improvement at 2-month follow-up. Tests showed no clinically significant cardiac, osseous, muscle, or hepatic adverse effects.

    Conclusions. In this study, supraphysiologic dosages of T3 were safe and significantly effective in the treatment of euthyroid FMS. Though these dosages produced thyroid function test results indicative of hyperthyroidism, our patients had no clinically significant adverse target tissue effects. Results suggest that euthyroid FMS is a clinical phenotype of partial peripheral resistance to thyroid hormone. We recommend that further studies be done to answer the questions: Are euthyroid FMS patients partially resistant to thyroid hormone? And if so, what are the molecular mechanisms of the resistance? Further testing is also necessary to establish the long-term safety of T3 therapy.

  2. elsa

    elsa New Member

    Hey, hey, hey ..... you're on a roll girl !!! Go Sally!!

    I just posted on your other double blind thread. We FM's have long felt like t3 and/or t4 to t3 conversion was not "quite right" with us, but that conventional testing did not show evidence of it.

    I have started a supplement that increases t4-t3 conversion. Interestingly, by basil body temperature has gone up ,... close to normal.

    I have not been on this long, so I holding off in reporting it here.

    Just wanted to tip my hat to you. I know how important the double- blind studies are to you. By sharing, you are giving us even more to hold on to.

  3. matthewson

    matthewson New Member

    I didn't know if I was going to get any response to my postings! You have posted in support of me before and I appreciate that.

    I am interested in the supplement that you are taking. Since I developed this DD over 2 years ago, I also have noticed that my normal temp. is less than 98.6.

    I take tramadol also, but do not take a night dose, so I take the 5-htp instead. I am only taking 50 mg right now, because I was worried about serotonin syndrome. So far, so good. Since I need to take the tramadol for pain relief, I hate to give it up because I don't think the 5-htp will help as much with pain, but it has sure helped with mood and carbohydrate cravings!

    For weight loss, you are supposed to get up to 100mg 3 times a day before meals. For people who are not on any kind of serotonin reuptake med. this might be feasible.

    By the way, my mother decided to try 5-htp and she said it made her very angry! I have a feeling that if you have enough serotonin production, this will not work for you.

    So, anyone who is going to try 5-htp, please be careful.

    Take care, Sally

    Woops, the 5-htp stuff is in response to my other post!
    [This Message was Edited on 08/15/2005]
  4. elsa

    elsa New Member

    Of course I support you. You're not against supplements by any stretch of the imagination. You are just very, very, very, ( did I mention very ?!? ) cautious
    about having studies that fall within your comfort zone to back up what supplements you decide to try. Ain't nothin' wrong with that.

    We need people like you on our research team. I am more of a "grey" area reseacher. You are a "black and white" researcher. Together we can balance each other out.
    I think I wrote to you before about how important
    "balance" is to me ... us.

    Did I mention that I am a double pisces with taurus rising?! I'm guessing that you are not. LOL Probably my exact opposite! HAHA That balance thing again!!

    Anyway, on the topic of 5-htp. I believe you and I are similar in when we were diagnosed and in our treatment paths.
    I can not stand and/or tolerate AD's. ( Have tried many, for different reasons, none of which were depression.) Made my life miserable.

    The first line of defense from my doctor against FM/CFS was to try lexapro. I did. I hated it. I stopped it. I started 5-htp slowly. Worked my way up to 100mgs. 3xd. That was alittle much for me. Settled into 100mgs 2xd. I had many benefits from this , but ,I still had that AD "drugged" kind of feeling. I opted for the tramadol pain relief. I worry about S.S. too.

    I was sorry to see the 5-htp go. It was the right choice for me in the battle of FM headaches. I did not get FM pain relief from it, just improved my headaches. That's not enough benefit for me to give up my tramadol.

    I didn't use to take tramadol at night as I get a delightful "lift" from it and would keep me from sleeping. That was a tough choice, as I woke up with some bad pain ... having gone so many hours without pain medication.

    My solution : Had a sleep study done. Found I have NO REM sleep. Cut out all meds./ supplements that suppress REM sleep. ( That includes ssri's and 5-htp, sam-e, etc..) Then started on lunesta. I now can take a evening dose of tramadol ( 50mgs.) and three advil. About 1 1/2 hours later,I take my lunesta.

    Sally, I am feeling so much better. Correcting my sleep disorder has been just a part of it. Sadly, 5-htp n only made my particular CFS/FM symptoms worse.

    Apparently, tramadol does not effect serotonin too greatly, or it would show up in my sleep disorder. Too much raised serotonin will suppress REM.

    Have you had a sleep study done? I have been harping on this the last 2 months to anyone who will listen. I just did not know that there were more then just deep wave abnormalities in CFS/FM. Had I continued on my treatment plan ... I'd never have started to feel better.

    As far as my supplement for t4 to t3 conversion ... I ain't sayin' yet. LOL! Seriously, I don't mind being my own guinea pig ( with my doctor standing guard over me ), but I'd hate to advise anyone else on something I haven't been on long enough.

    I started it on Aug.8th. In that time my basil temp. has gone from 95 - 96 degrees to 97 - 98.1 degrees. A vast improvement. My other "marker" is that I am even more happy and well- feeling then I was before starting it.

    My goal for it is to improve my cellular matabolism. The ultimate indicator will be if my hands warm up in weather cooler then 85 degrees. LOL

    I'm assuming that your thyroid tests came back as mine did ... normal. Traditional MD's / medicine have not learned yet that FM/CFS effects these things. Not to the point of diseased, but out of wack just the same.

    My doctor's hands are tied ... It's not his fault. He is taking care of me as he can. Our code phrase now is " That's science, not medicine. I can't advise you...". That means " go ahead ... I'll catch you if you fall. Let's document everything and get you better". I love that man!!

    I will write the lab that developed this t4/t3 supplement and ask them for copies of their testing data. If they don't mind and all continues to go well, then I'll happily forward them onto you!

    This is such a LONG post!! Sorry about that dear. I just wanted to be sure I answered your questions. ( and then some apparently !!)

    Keep up your research. Like I mentioned at the start...
    we need all kinds in our corner.

    Talk soon,

  5. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Someone here once posted an article in which the author theorized that it is really the thyroid which is the master gland.

    I don't know whether that's true or not, but it certainly plays an important role in our health.

    This was a very small population for a study. The author is right; more studies need to be done, especially to determine the safety of the proposed treatment.

    If you run into any further research in this area, please post the info. This is very interesting. Thanks again.

    Love, Mikie
  6. blondie45

    blondie45 New Member

    This is very interesting since I have had part of my thyroid removed and developed fibromyalgia after this operation.It was not immediately after, so I really do not attribute my fibromyalgia to that operation. I have blood tests every year that say the remaining portion of my thyroid is fucntioning well with no medication. I still do not believe this every year!
    [This Message was Edited on 08/15/2005]
  7. lilbird

    lilbird New Member

    the FFC is doing. I just started on T3T4 medication. I have only been on it for 19 days and can tell that it is helping.

  8. tansy

    tansy New Member

    This applies to many who have been Dx with ME/CFS as well.

    We have a few doctors here who use more sensitive testing and understand the need to treat thyroid hormone problems. Their careers have been put at risk though, ironically one of the people who reported two of them to our General Medical Council is an influential medical advisor to one of our national ME organisations in the UK. Fortunately on this second occasion the GMC’s ruling meant the doctor can continue to treat his patients.


    I look forward to reading how you get on and what it is you are using. My thyroid issues have improved as well along with the other benefits from my current protocol. Zopliclone (like lunesta) has allowed me to get some sleep, and without that as well I doubt my recent progress would have been possible.

    Love, Tansy

    [This Message was Edited on 08/15/2005]
  9. jake123

    jake123 New Member

    I took T3 abd T4 five years ago when I saw an endocrinologist. My hair, eyebrows, pubes were falling out! My chiropracter directed me to the endo.
    Then I changed PCP's and that doctor said NO T-3 or T-4!!! Trusting him and trying to feel better, I stopped.
    Long story cut short, don't feel better. My rheumy's intern said if you felt better taking the thyroid - go back to your endo! I am.
  10. matthewson

    matthewson New Member

    I am very, very, very cautious! I am a Virgo, that probably explains it all! I am a very methodical person and that is why lab work interested me the most. Have always loved science.

    Glad to hear that you have found a good Dr. who will work with you. That makes all the difference in the world! I have recently switched Drs and this one seems to be a little more up on FMS/CFS. He is younger and graduated from U. of Mi. where there is a lot of research going on into FMS, so I think he was at least exposed to it.

    And tramadol affects me the same way, kind of a fuzzy, can't quite discribe it feeling. It also keeps me up at night so I don't take a night time dose. I have had pretty good luck with ZMA every night(sold here) and Flexeril on the nights that I really can't sleep and have to be up early for work. I really should have a sleep study done to see if I would benefit from another regiment, as I do have trouble staying asleep.

    And yes my thyroid tests are normal. But, the lower temp. thing I guess is part of the whole syndrome. I am looking forward to hearing what you are trying if you decide it is working for you.

    Take care and have a good night. Sally

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