What is Westhroid?Westhroid is a medicine used to treat hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid gland). Westhroid is a synthetic hormone that is intended to replace a hormone that is normally produced by your thyroid gland. It is also used to treat or prevent certain other thyroid conditions such as goiter (an enlarged thyroid gland); inflammation of the thyroid gland; thyroid hormone deficiency due to surgery, radiation, or certain medications; or for the management of certain thyroid cancers. Also, Westhroid is used for thyroid suppression tests as a diagnostic agent to evaluate your thyroid function.
What is the most important information I should know about Westhroid?Although Westhroid can speed up your metabolism, it is not effective as a weight-loss medication and you should not use it for this purpose. Too much Westhroid can cause severe or possibly life-threatening side effects, especially if you are also taking appetite suppressants.
Westhroid is a replacement therapy, so you need to take it every day for life unless your condition is temporary. Tell your doctor immediately if you experience chest pain, rapid or irregular heartbeats, excessive sweating, heat intolerance, or nervousness.
If you have heart disease, your doctor may need to start you on a lower dose of Westhroid to see how you respond to the medication.
Also, if you have diabetes, your doctor will determine if the dose of your diabetes medication needs to be adjusted. Your doctor will monitor your urinary sugar levels.
If you are taking an oral blood thinner (such as warfarin), your doctor will monitor your blood clotting status to determine if the dose of your blood thinner needs to be adjusted.
Who should not take Westhroid?Do not take Westhroid if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.
Do not take Westhroid if your adrenal glands are not making enough steroids or if you have thyrotoxicosis (increased thyroid hormones).
What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Westhroid?Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Westhroid. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you have heart problems, diabetes, blood clotting disorders, or adrenal gland problems.
What is the usual dosage?The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor's approval.
Adults and children: Your doctor will prescribe the appropriate dose for you based on your age, weight, and condition.
How should I take Westhroid?Take Westhroid exactly as prescribed by your doctor. This medication is absorbed better on an empty stomach.
What should I avoid while taking Westhroid?Do not stop taking Westhroid or change the way you take it without talking to your doctor.
What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Westhroid?If Westhroid is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Westhroid with the following: birth control pills, cholestyramine, colestipol, estrogen, insulin or oral antidiabetic medications (such as metformin or glipizide), or blood thinners.
What are the possible side effects of Westhroid?Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.
Side effects may include: chest pain, excessive sweating, heat intolerance, nervousness, rapid or irregular heartbeats
Can I receive Westhroid if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?You can continue to take Westhroid during pregnancy. However, a dose adjustment may be necessary. Small amounts of thyroid hormone are excreted in your breast milk. Tell your doctor immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
What should I do if I miss a dose of Westhroid?If you miss a dose of Westhroid, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at once.
How should I store Westhroid?Store at room temperature. Protect from light.