In well-selected candidates for treatment, the most common reason for difficulty is unsteady T3 levels (c25). But I’ll address this question, based on the assumption that the T3 therapy has been administered as well as possible, and still does not work for a patient as hoped. Briefly, the human body is a complexly interrelated system. By affecting one area, many other areas may be affected in turn. For example, getting enough exercise, getting enough sleep, and eating well can each, individually, cause significant changes in the entire body (from bowel movements to headaches). There are many influences that can have widespread effects and that can even recalibrate the system. Such as: T3 therapy, female hormones, adrenal hormones, and other medicines. When combined, these influences can be synergistic or antagonistic. If a patient seems to be progressing nicely on T3 therapy, and that progress is inexplicably halted, it may be that there is an opposing influence that is not allowing endogenous recalibration in a certain area (see “ropes and rings” analogy in book: Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome-A Reversible Thyroid Problem). For example, if a patient is taking .625 mg of Premarin each day, it may be helpful to see how well the patient does on .3mg each day. By changing the “tension” in a potentially oppositional influence, progress can often be resumed (see end of Q22). Other examples of such influences include certain blood pressure medicines and antidepressants.
Nevertheless, T3 therapy is no more a panacea than any other medical treatment. Even though it works exceptionally well for a large number of people who previously were unable to find relief, it sadly, does not work for everyone. When it is decided that an adequate therapeutic trial has been given, and the patient’s symptoms have not responded, the patient will be back in a similar spot he/she was in before hearing of Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome : square one, looking for a solution for his/her frustrating situation. As far as leads go, if the patient’s symptoms are classic for Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome, they are classic for abnormal body temperature patterns. If the patient has an abnormal body temperature pattern that does not respond to T3 therapy (very rare), then perhaps there is some other temperature-mediating factor involved. If the treatment failed because for some reason the patient could not tolerate T3 therapy (usually because of unsteadiness), then the patient may want to look toward the not too distant future. Because although T3 compounded with a sustained release agent in a capsule is a great approach, it’s not perfect. The technology is already available and the application will certainly come that provides for more steady, better controlled, and better tolerated administration of T3 therapy (e.g., infusion pumps, patches, etc.).
It is important to be as supportive as possible towards patients for whom the treatment doesn’t work. They can easily feel despair. I feel it is important that the patients cope as well as they can with their complaints, but I don’t feel that it is warranted to tell them: “You’ll have to live the rest of your life feeling the way you do.” Many of the people who respond fabulously well to T3 therapy have been told that same thing in the past. But it wasn’t true. Such a comment is without basis and should be avoided. It can be very destructive, and accomplishes very little. More than one patient with such symptoms has mentioned suicide. Things change and new answers come everyday, and probably will more so all the time. Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome is a precedent for such simple answers.