Can Levothyroxine cause Sweating and Hot Flashes?

Posted by Gail, Volunteer Mentor @baxtersmom, Jan 7, 2020

I started on Levothryroxine around September of last year after testing borderline hypothyroid and complaining of fatigue. After being on 25 mcg except for 3 days a week where I take 50, it got my TSH back to around 2.5 as I recall. I am having the most awful sweating episodes it is as if I am going through menopause all over again. Has anyone had this experience with Levothyroxine? I take some other meds so it is hard to know if this is the culprit but it is the one I began most recently and seems most likely the cause at least to me. I should probably get tested again but is it possible that even if your TSH is where they want it to be (they tested the free T3, T4 and some other things as well) that this particular medication just doesn't agree with me? Has anyone had levothyroxine cause sweating?

@baxtersmom I also have night sweats and I take the same dosage of levothyroxine as you do, but I’ve taken it for quite a while and the night sweats have just been for a couple of years. I have been thinking that mine are due to my immunosuppressants. Obviously something we are taking is causing them.
I just did some googling and apparently both levothyroxine and sirolimus, my immunosuppressant, can cause night sweats but with levothyroxine it’s if you are taking too much, which doesn’t sound as if you are. I recall reading somewhere that the TSH test can be inaccurate and sometimes other testing must be done. Maybe you should ask your doctor about that. I don’t know anything about additional testing.
JK

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Hi, Yes it’s Because we might have been without it for some time… sometimes the doctor will ratchet the dose up very slowly, a little at a time.

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I am having the same issue. when I quit taking it, all the symptoms went away. It doesn't matter what the dose is, it still causes heat intolerance and profuse sweating.

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I've taken it, levothyroxine, for years, never had this as a symptom

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Not everyone does

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Maybe your dose is wrong.

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I was having horrid sweats at all kinds of times, basically got to be several times daily and whole body sweating. It started with my head! Hot head took on a new meaning for me! I mean really hot….wet, with sweat streaming down my face and neck….progressed to whole body. I ended up in Mayo ED and then admitted. Testing showed too much levothyroxine. I was hyperthyroid…..too much meds. Docs reduced medication and after a couple days, I'm doing sooooo much better. no sweats at all. My skin has softened, my hair is softer and growing better, my nail were loosening and in horrible shape….now getting stronger and healthier. So, this little pill was having a ball in my body! Ha, ha…I won! Now I have the correct dosage and my thyroid is happy and doing it's thing. Hope this helps a bit. Blessings and happy new year to you all! Elizabeth

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@ess77 When I saw your email, I went back to the beginning of this thread and saw that I was the one who started it quite a while back. I had the same exact thing happen to me. I stopped it all together and now am fine. I was in the normal TSH range even before I started taking it but my TSH was in the 4 to 5 range I think and the meds got me down in the 2 to 3 range which my doctor said was better. I keep checking it every once in a while to make sure it is stable and it is between 2 and 3. I was sweating and it would start with my head and neck area. I would get really dizzy too and nauseated. They reduced the amount but the symptoms persisted so I just tapered off of it. I believe that primary care doctors should refer people to thyroid doctors before they go putting people on this stuff. This is a very powerful medication and it is very difficult to get the dose just right. Someone with more experience who deals with these issues more frequently should be the one to be dosing this stuff in my humble opinion. As I came to read more and more about thyroid issues and testing, I came to understand how many people get labelled with Hashimoto's Hypothyroidism when the testing they have had really doesn't define to a degree of certainty that is what they have. It is just the label doctors give to people without really doing all the testing necessary to define it. I would not be at all hesitant if I were you to see an endocrinologist or a thyroid specialist if you start to feel bad again or if you are going to be on that medication for the foreseeable future.

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@baxtersmom

@ess77 When I saw your email, I went back to the beginning of this thread and saw that I was the one who started it quite a while back. I had the same exact thing happen to me. I stopped it all together and now am fine. I was in the normal TSH range even before I started taking it but my TSH was in the 4 to 5 range I think and the meds got me down in the 2 to 3 range which my doctor said was better. I keep checking it every once in a while to make sure it is stable and it is between 2 and 3. I was sweating and it would start with my head and neck area. I would get really dizzy too and nauseated. They reduced the amount but the symptoms persisted so I just tapered off of it. I believe that primary care doctors should refer people to thyroid doctors before they go putting people on this stuff. This is a very powerful medication and it is very difficult to get the dose just right. Someone with more experience who deals with these issues more frequently should be the one to be dosing this stuff in my humble opinion. As I came to read more and more about thyroid issues and testing, I came to understand how many people get labelled with Hashimoto's Hypothyroidism when the testing they have had really doesn't define to a degree of certainty that is what they have. It is just the label doctors give to people without really doing all the testing necessary to define it. I would not be at all hesitant if I were you to see an endocrinologist or a thyroid specialist if you start to feel bad again or if you are going to be on that medication for the foreseeable future.

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I agree. An endocrinologist is the expert. Also TSH should be retested soon after the first test to confirm accuracy.

Liked by ess77

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Great! I guess I was a year late! That little thyroid is something else! It affects all our body systems. And, it was affecting most of mine by the time I was in hospital and docs found out what was underlying most of the symptoms. My anxiety level was sky high! Couldn't stop talkng! had tremors1 on and on….so glad we got it figured out. Amazing how much of our health issues are investigation, trial and error. That's why I love Mayo so much. That's what they do well! Inquiring minds…..Blessings. Elizabeth

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Yes, and an endocrinologist found I have primary aldosteronism……we need the expert to ck all the hormone issues, at least I did. Seems several of my hormones are acting up or need help. blessings. Elziabeht

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@baxtersmom

@ess77 When I saw your email, I went back to the beginning of this thread and saw that I was the one who started it quite a while back. I had the same exact thing happen to me. I stopped it all together and now am fine. I was in the normal TSH range even before I started taking it but my TSH was in the 4 to 5 range I think and the meds got me down in the 2 to 3 range which my doctor said was better. I keep checking it every once in a while to make sure it is stable and it is between 2 and 3. I was sweating and it would start with my head and neck area. I would get really dizzy too and nauseated. They reduced the amount but the symptoms persisted so I just tapered off of it. I believe that primary care doctors should refer people to thyroid doctors before they go putting people on this stuff. This is a very powerful medication and it is very difficult to get the dose just right. Someone with more experience who deals with these issues more frequently should be the one to be dosing this stuff in my humble opinion. As I came to read more and more about thyroid issues and testing, I came to understand how many people get labelled with Hashimoto's Hypothyroidism when the testing they have had really doesn't define to a degree of certainty that is what they have. It is just the label doctors give to people without really doing all the testing necessary to define it. I would not be at all hesitant if I were you to see an endocrinologist or a thyroid specialist if you start to feel bad again or if you are going to be on that medication for the foreseeable future.

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I definitely agree with you, @baxtersmom, an endocrinologist is the best doctor to see. I think PCPs often try to do too much but they are not as practiced in these issues. My endo keeps track of my TSH and as he says, it's "spot on".

I pretty much always go to a specialist when I have anything that can be better treated by one. That's what they're there for.
JK

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I am waking up with very stiff joints and frozen toes. The problem gets better as I begin to move but really lasts all day. I have to walk now with a cane. I am also having a disconnect in the joint between my second toe and my foot. There is bruising at the base of the toe and only if I walk putting emphasis on the heel and not the toes does it not feel painful. This morning I was wondering if it is caused by drug interaction. I am taking some new prescription drugs for new concerns. I will turn80this year of 2021. I am to see a new specialist, an orthopedist, in February. Today I thought I should make a list of all the prescription drugs I take each day and find out if there are interactions. Comments?

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@lewismustard

Maybe your dose is wrong.

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my TSH Levels go up if he lowers the dose so it really doesn't matter what the dose is I still have the profuse sweating and heat intolerance and nausea from the heat when taking the medication. I asked to be switched to Armor to see if any different and no difference. The side effects to Armor are the same, profuse sweating and heat intolerance. The manufacturer list that as side effects. I cannot live with the sweating and don't know what to do. My Endo even suggest maybe estrogen to combat the sweating, which I am not willing to do. He did not even know these were side effects of thyroid medication until I told him.

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@ess77

I was having horrid sweats at all kinds of times, basically got to be several times daily and whole body sweating. It started with my head! Hot head took on a new meaning for me! I mean really hot….wet, with sweat streaming down my face and neck….progressed to whole body. I ended up in Mayo ED and then admitted. Testing showed too much levothyroxine. I was hyperthyroid…..too much meds. Docs reduced medication and after a couple days, I'm doing sooooo much better. no sweats at all. My skin has softened, my hair is softer and growing better, my nail were loosening and in horrible shape….now getting stronger and healthier. So, this little pill was having a ball in my body! Ha, ha…I won! Now I have the correct dosage and my thyroid is happy and doing it's thing. Hope this helps a bit. Blessings and happy new year to you all! Elizabeth

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May I ask what your TSH Levels are. My Endo keeps taking me to less than 2. 0 and says that is good. I know better because my hair gets brittle and my nails and skin around my nails get so brittle that my the skin around my thumb nails split. I told him it was too low and to change it. He did change it and my hair and nails became some better, but the sweating and heat intolerance will not go away. What is funny to me is, the profuse sweating and heat intolerance are symptoms that you are to call your doctor about if you start experiencing them. He says he has been doing this for 10 years and I am the only person that has this problem. I told him it is because most women believe it is menopause. He is a PA, but I would think he would be consulting with the doctor about my issues. I am at a loss as what to do. I went off the meds for 4 months and my TSH went to 15.0

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