Thyroid Problems/Thyroid removal


QUESTION: I had my thyroid and two parathyroids removed in July due to cancer.
I was placed on I'm of Levothroxine and was gaining weight
I actually was eating very healthy and less, and doing Zumba 3 times a week.
It was upped to 175 mcg and still gained weight. All total so far, 15 pounds.
It was reduced to 112mcg and I cannot lose even a pound while maintaining a healthy eating plan and exercise.
My TSH level while I was on 175mcg was .002. They said I was hyperactive, but still gained weight.
My doctor told me without a thyroid, they cannot test T3 and T4 levels. Not sure if that is true.

ANSWER: Hello Gail,
Warm welcome to you!
After going through your mail carefully I feel your doctor might have some confusions about measuring T3 and T4. Because the synthetically prepared levothyroxine(T4) is similar to naturally secreted thyroxine hormone in both structure and function. So levothyroxine follows the same metabolic rules in our body as natural thyroxine. Also levothyroxine gets converted to T3 (tri-iodothyronine), the functional molecule. So definitely its possible to measure serum T3 and T4 levels when you are on levothyroxine.

And about your weight gain, I will definitely give you diagnosis. For that please send your age, height, weight before thyroidectomy, present weight and also your eating habits and diet. Most probably when you are gaining weight even after taking levothyroxine, it means your body is struggling to convert T4 to T3. So you may require a combinational therapy of T3 and T4.

Will be waiting for your reply.

Take care. Have a good day. Bye.

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QUESTION: 57....Before...5'5"  160 (Was starting to lose before surgery)
Now 182.....
I am currently doing Atkins with between 15 and 20 carbs a day.I eat mostly veggies, eggs, cheese, bacon. I don't get hungry so I will eat an Atkins bar in place of a meal.
Zumba 3 times a week...1 hour and sometoning exercises.

Hi gail,
Nice to see you!
I calculated you BMI(Body Mass Index) it comes around 30. And your BMR(Basal Metabolic Rate) is around 1650. So you have to consume less than 1650 calories in a day to loose weight. Are you doing it? How many calories approx you consume in a day (including atkins)? Please calculate and tell if possible. By your response I believe you are in Atkins Phase 1. From how many days you are following Atkins?

You should know that at the age of 57 normally the metabolic rate of body slows down. So its bit difficult for you to loose weight than others. But dont worry we will solve your problem out. You may want to have foods increasing your BMR. Also cheese is not a good addition in your diet in my opinion. Veggies are ok. Keep eggs in moderation. How much bacon you eat?

And sorry for the delay :( was busy in hospital rounds.
Also most imporatantly, get you thyroid profile test done.

Anyway keep in touch. You can contact me any time at

Take care. Bye.

Thyroid Problems

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Dr.Shrinidhi Kulkarni


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