Levoxyl (Levothyroxine Sodium)
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Levothyroxine Sodium Information
(lee voe thye rox' een)Thyroid hormone should not be used to treat obesity in patients with normal thyroid function. Levothyroxine is ineffective for weight reduction in normal thyroid patients and may cause serious or life-threatening toxicity, especially when taken with amphetamines. Talk to your doctor about the potential risks associated with this medication.
Before taking levothyroxine,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to levothyroxine, thyroid hormone, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in levothyroxine. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone); amphetamines; anticoagulants ('blood thinners') such as warfarin (Coumadin); aspirin or aspirin-containing products and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs; beta-blockers such as metoprolol (Lopressor), propranolol (Inderal) or timolol (Timoptic); carbamazepine (Equetro, Tegretol); corticosteroids such as dexamethasone; digoxin (Lanoxin); estrogens; furosemide (Lasix); imatinib (Gleevac); insulin or other medications to treat diabetes; lithium (Lithobid); maprotiline; oral contraceptives; phenobarbital; phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek); rifampin (Rifater, Rifamate, Rifadin); selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as sertraline (Zoloft); theophylline (TheoDur); and tricyclic antidepressants such as amitriptyline (Elavil). Many other medications may also interact with levothyroxine, so be sure to tell your doctor about all the medications you are taking, even those that do not appear on this list. Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects.
- if you take an antacid, calcium carbonate (Tums), cholestyramine (Questran), colesevelam (Welchol), colestipol (Colestid), iron, orlistat (Alli, Xenical), simethicone (Phazyme, Gas X), sevelamer (Renvela, Renagel), sodium polystyrene sulfonate (Kayexalate), or sucralfate (Carafate), take it at least 4 hours before or 4 hours after you take levothyroxine.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had diabetes; hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis); kidney disease; liver disease or hepatitis; bleeding problems; porphyria (condition in which abnormal substances build up in the blood and cause problems with the skin or nervous system); cardiovascular disease such as high blood pressure, chest pain (angina), arrhythmias, or heart attack; an underactive adrenal or pituitary gland, or any condition that makes it difficult for you to swallow.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking levothyroxine, call your doctor.
- if you have surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking levothyroxine.
- weight loss
- stomach cramps
- excessive sweating
- increased appetite
- changes in menstrual cycle
- sensitivity to heat
- temporary hair loss, particularly in children during the first month of therapy
- chest pain (angina)
- rapid or irregular heartbeat or pulse