This morning I woke up and got on the Internet. I got a message from Thyroid Disease activist Mary Shomon's site at http://thyroid.about.com/b/2009/05/31/natural-thyroid-drug-shortages.htm?nl=1. The message said that certain dosages of Armour Thyroid are not available at this time. As I read further on a another site that I found, I read that Armour Thyroid is not FDA approved, and that there is question as to whether the medication may be discontinued at some point. Also, the above site mentions that the few other natural thyroid supplement manufacturers are having to back order some of their tablets as well. I had been worried about this (medication shortage) happening again. Thanks to Mary Shomon for her tireless work as an advocate for those suffering with Thyroid Disease and/or Autoimmune Disease!
I went through this same thing last summer when there was a back order for Armour Thyroid. I am not understanding why this keeps happening. I'm not trying to be dramatic, but I'm really not understanding how there is continuously a shortage of this medicine when it imperative that patients take the medicine. Yes, there are alternatives. But, some people, such as myself, cannot tolerate them.
Last year, my Endocrinologist's nurse told me to take Synthroid when I called the doctor's office in regards to the shortage of medicine and asked about the possibility of having my prescription filled out of the state through a compounding pharmacy that had some available. It's not as simple as switching medications. More importantly, his nurse shouldn't have been giving out that type of advice--not being the doctor. The Nerve!
It turned out that I didn't have to utilize the compounding pharmacy. Luckily, I was able to find a nearby pharmacy that had enough Armour Thyroid. But, the pharmacy that I usually go to as well as several other pharmacies could not get me any medication at that time due to the back order.
I am very concerned about this occurrence. I do not want to ever be on Synthroid or synthetic thyroid hormone ever again, because I believe it has done damage to my body. I am not slandering the product. I just know that my body does not react well to that medicine. I could tell you the horror stories (Actually, I have in other posts on my Blog).
So, I called Forest Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of Armour Thyroid. In response to a series of questions that I asked, I found out the following:
*Many of the Armour Thyroid medications are on back order.
*Armour Thyroid was "Grandfathered" in regarding FDA approval.
*The representative could not answer whether or not Armour Thyroid would be discontinued. When I asked for an address and person to whom I could inquire about this concern, she said that no one would be able to answer that question at this point. "This sounds fishy to me." I will probably write to the company, anyway--just to see.
I am terrified that this medicine might be discontinued at some point. While I wish I didn't have to take any thyroid medicine (due to side affects) , Armour Thyroid "seems" to be the best alternative thus far.
For anyone who wants to get on the "contact" bandwagon, I have some information for you: (If you know anyone who takes Armour Thyroid, please share this information with them).
Phone number for Forest Pharmaceuticals: 1-800-678-1605, extension 7301
Fax number to Forest Pharmaceuticals: 314-493-7457