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Myth: Once on thyroid, thyroid for life

Once a person needs thyroid medicine to improve symptoms of decreased thyroid system function, or low thyroid blood tests for that matter, s/he will always need thyroid medicine for the rest of her/his life.
FALSE. Even glandular insufficiencies of the thyroid system can be temporary, making it possible for people to be weaned off thyroid medicine sometimes, with their glandular function coming back up to normal. And people without glandular insufficiencies are particularly easy to wean off T3 therapy successfully after their symptoms have resolved.

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About the Author:

Denis Wilson, MD described Wilson 's Temperature Syndrome in 1988 after observing people with symptoms of low thyroid and low body temperature, yet who had normal blood tests. He found that by normalizing their temperatures with T3 (without T4) their symptoms often remained improved even after the treatment was discontinued. He was the first doctor to use sustained-release T3.


  1. Carson December 14, 2015 at 1:58 pm - Reply

    Hi Doctor,

    I was wondering about this because I recently am on a treatment of light hypothyroidism (12.5mcg t3/50mcg t4).
    Doc is just trying to lower Tsh from 2.7 to 1ish are and raise freet3 and free t4.

    I have no Physical* thyroid problems that I know of.

    Ive Always been under the impression that if I ever improved those number and how I feel…that I would need to stay on the medication to maintain that.

    From what your saying here that would be incorrect?

    Thank you

    • Dr. Denis Wilson December 14, 2015 at 2:51 pm - Reply

      Yes Carson, if your TSH started at 2.7 then you would not need to be on medicine for life. In order to feel well you will need your Temperature to be averaging 98.6 orally. If your Temp is not normal then your metabolism is not optimal regardless of what your tests say. If your symptoms do improve on the T4 and T3 you’re taking then your low temperature and symptoms would probably return when you wean off. If you correct your temperature with T3 then there’s a good chance your temp and symptoms would remain improved after you wean off. T3 can reset the system but T4 can’t.

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