Hypothyroidism is due to an underactive thyroid gland. This means that the thyroid gland can’t make enough thyroid hormone to keep the body running normally. The major form of thyroid hormone in the blood is Levothyroxine (T4), and Triiodothyronine (T3). The goal of therapy is to reverse all the clinical manifestations of hypothyroidism. This can be accomplished by oral administration of synthetic thyroxine (T4, levothyroxine). It has been suggested that the addition of T3 may be of benefit for some patients.
Desiccated thyroid or thyroid extract refers to dried porcine thyroid glands in therapeutic use. The earliest oral treatment for hypothyroidism consisted of thyroid extract. In the early 1960s, desiccated thyroid hormones began to be replaced by levothyroxine (T4), or by combinations of T4 and T3.
- Is combination therapy (tyroxin, T4, and triiodothyronin, T3) more effective than monotherapy (tyroxin, T4) for patients with hypothyroidism?
- Is thyroid extract more effective than levothyroxine (T4) for patients with hypothyroidism?
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