What is Eltroxin used for?
Eltroxin tablets 100mcg are used to treat hypothyroidism or underactive thyroid, a condition in which the thyroid gland does not make enough thyroid hormone (thyroxine) needed to regulate the body’s growth and metabolism. Hypothyroidism can be idiopathic (of unknown cause) or congenital as in the case of the autoimmune disease Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, where the thyroid gland is destroyed by the immune system. Eltroxin tablets 100mcg are a replacement hormone to relieve the symptoms of hypothyroidism, including, tiredness, muscle weakness, cramps, feeling the cold, a slow heart rate, dry and flaky skin, hair loss, a deep husky voice and weight gain. Eltroxin tablets 100mcg are also used to treat congenital hypothyroidism in infants born with the disease, acquired hypothyroidism in children, which can develop after birth and into childhood or adolescence, due to a deficiency of iodine in the diet; also juvenile myxoedema, which is a clinical condition of swelling under the skin and thickening of the skin that occurs in children who are deficient in thyroid hormone, usually due to their mother having a nutritional deficiency in iodine while in the womb, and who are physically and mentally underdeveloped.
How does Eltroxin work?
Eltroxin 100mcg tablets contain levothyroxine sodium, a synthetic thyroid hormone that is identical to the naturally occurring thyroid hormone thyroxine or T4, produced by the thyroid gland. Levothyroxine in Eltroxin 100mcg tablets is converted to the more active form of thyroid hormone (T3) which interacts with a specific receptor inside cells to stimulate proteins needed to manage and regulate a variety of processes including how the body regulates temperature, metabolises nutrients and controls growth and development. The overall effect of thyroxine is to Increase rate of metabolism. Thyroxine regulates the production of another hormone called thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) which in turn controls how much thyroxine is produced. Eltroxin 100mcg tablets regulate TSH production in the same way and therefore, substitutes for a lack of endogenous thyroxine (produced by the thyroid gland).
What does Eltroxin contain?
Eltroxin tablets 100mcg contain the active ingredient levothyroxine, which is used to treat hypothyroidism or underactive thyroid.
Treating underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) with Eltroxin
Eltroxin tablets 100mcg contain levothyroxine, which is a synthetic thyroid hormone that is identical to the naturally occurring thyroid hormone thyroxine or T4 and is used to treat hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid gland) by substituting for the lack of thyroid hormone needed to regulate normal growth and metabolism. Eltroxin tablets 100mcg are used to treat idiopathic (of unknown cause) hypothyroidism or congenital hypothyroidism as in the case of the autoimmune disease Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, where the thyroid gland is destroyed by the immune system; also congenital hypothyroidism in infants born with the disease, acquired hypothyroidism in children; also juvenile myxoedema, which is a clinical condition of swelling under the skin and thickening of the skin that occurs in children who are deficient in thyroid hormone, usually due to their mother having a nutritional deficiency in iodine while in the womb, and who are physically and mentally underdeveloped. Eltroxin tablets 100mcg help relieve symptoms of hypothyroidism, including, tiredness, muscle weakness, cramps, feeling the cold, a slow heart rate, dry and flaky skin, hair loss, a deep husky voice and weight gain.
What are the side effects of Eltroxin?
Most of the side effects experienced with taking Eltroxin tablets 100mcg mean that your dose is too high and may need adjusting. The most commonly reported side effects when taking Eltroxin include headache, sleep problems (insomnia), feeling nervous or irritable sweating, flushing, appetite changes, weight loss, muscle weakness/cramps, tremors.
When should Eltroxin not be used?
You should not use Eltroxin tablets 100mcg if you:
- are allergic to levothyroxine or any ingredients in Eltroxin
- are pregnant or are breastfeeding, without discussion with your doctor
- have had a heart attack, a thyroid disorder called thyrotoxicosis, or an adrenal gland problem that is not controlled by treatment
- are a diabetic taking antidiabetics or insulin, without discussion with your doctor, as Eltroxin may affect your glucose tolerance
- are taking other medications that may interact with Eltroxin, such as anticonvulsants like phenytoin and carbamazepine, cardiac glycosides like digoxin for heart failure, cholesterol-lowing drugs containing cholestyramine, tricyclic antidepressants, anticoagulants
What medications interact with Eltroxin?
Several medications interact with Eltroxin tablets 100mcg and should either not be taken while you are taking Eltroxin or only after discussion and instruction from your doctor:
- Drugs that affect Eltroxin: the anticonvulsants phenytoin and carbamazepine, cholesterol-lowing drugs containing cholestyramine
- Drugs that are affected by Eltroxin: the anticonvulsant phenytoin, cardiac glycosides like digoxin for heart failure, tricyclic antidepressants
How should Eltroxin be taken?
You should take your Eltroxin tablets 100mcg swallowed whole with a glass of water once daily on an empty stomach, preferably 30 minutes before eating breakfast. Your doctor may increase your dose depending on your condition and response. Eltroxin tablets 100mcg are a long-term treatment and you should continue to take your Eltroxin tablets 100mcg regularly for as long as recommended by your doctor, which may be for and may be for the rest of your life.
How long should you take Eltroxin?
Eltroxin tablets 100mcg are a long-term treatment and you should continue to take your Eltroxin tablets 100mcg regularly for as long as recommended by your doctor, which may be for and may be for the rest of your life.
Missed dose of Eltroxin
If you miss a dose of Eltroxin tablets 100mcg take it as soon as you remember, unless it is time to take the next dose, then skip the missed dose. Do not take a double dose.
What is Eltroxin?
Eltroxin is a replacement for a hormone that is normally produced by your thyroid gland to regulate the body’s energy and metabolism. Eltroxin is given when the thyroid does not produce enough of this hormone on its own.
Eltroxin treats hypothyroidism (low thyroid hormone). Eltroxin is also used to treat or prevent goiter (enlarged thyroid gland), which can be caused by hormone imbalances, radiation treatment, surgery, or cancer.
Eltroxin should not be used to treat obesity or weight problems.
Eltroxin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Eltroxin is indicated in pediatric and adult patients as a replacement therapy in primary (thyroidal), secondary (pituitary), and tertiary (hypothalamic) congenital or acquired hypothyroidism.
Pituitary Thyrotropin (Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone, TSH) Suppression
Eltroxin is indicated in pediatric and adult patients as an adjunct to surgery and radioiodine therapy in the management of thyrotropin-dependent well-differentiated thyroid cancer.
Limitations of Use:
- Eltroxin is not indicated for suppression of benign thyroid nodules and nontoxic diffuse goiter in iodine-sufficient patients as there are no clinical benefits and overtreatment with Eltroxin may induce hyperthyroidism.
- Eltroxin is not indicated for treatment of hypothyroidism during the recovery phase of subacute thyroiditis.
How should I use Eltroxin?
Use Eltroxin as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Eltroxin is usually given as an injection at your doctor’s office, hospital, or clinic. If you will be using Eltroxin at home, a health care provider will teach you how to use it. Be sure you understand how to use Eltroxin. Follow the procedures you are taught when you use a dose. Contact your health care provider if you have any questions.
- Do not use Eltroxin if it contains particles, is cloudy or discolored, or if the vial is cracked or damaged.
- Always carefully check that you have drawn up the correct dose before administration.
- Keep this product, as well as syringes and needles, out of the reach of children and pets. Do not reuse needles, syringes, or other materials. Ask your health care provider how to dispose of these materials after use. Follow all local rules for disposal.
- Eltroxin works best if you use it at the same time each day.
- Continue to use Eltroxin even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
- It may take several weeks before you notice an improvement in your symptoms. Do not stop or change your dose of Eltroxin without first checking with your doctor.
- If you miss a dose of Eltroxin, use it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Eltroxin.
Uses of Eltroxin in details
Eltroxin is used to treat an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism). It replaces or provides more thyroid hormone, which is normally produced by the thyroid gland. Low thyroid hormone levels can occur naturally or when the thyroid gland is injured by radiation/medications or removed by surgery. Having enough thyroid hormone is important for maintaining normal mental and physical activity. In children, having enough thyroid hormone is important for normal mental and physical development.
This medication is also used to treat other types of thyroid disorders (such as certain types of goiters, thyroid cancer).
This medication should not be used to treat infertility unless it is caused by low thyroid hormone levels.
How to use Eltroxin
Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually once daily on an empty stomach, 30 minutes to 1 hour before breakfast. Take this medication with a full glass of water unless your doctor directs you otherwise.
If you are taking the capsule form of this medication, swallow it whole. Do not split, crush, or chew. People who cannot swallow the capsule whole (such as infants or small children) should use the tablet form of the medication.
For infants or children who cannot swallow whole tablets, crush the tablet and mix in 1 to 2 teaspoons (5 to 10 milliliters) of water, and give using a spoon or dropper right away. Do not prepare a supply in advance or mix the tablet in soy infant formula. Consult your pharmacist for more information.
Dosage is based on your age, weight, medical condition, laboratory test results, and response to treatment.
Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day.
Do not stop taking this medication without first consulting with your doctor. Thyroid replacement treatment is usually taken for life.
There are different brands of Eltroxin available. Do not change brands without first consulting your doctor or pharmacist.
Certain medications (such as cholestyramine, colestipol, colesevelam, antacids, sucralfate, simethicone, iron, sodium polystyrene sulfonate, calcium supplements, orlistat, sevelamer, among others) can decrease the amount of thyroid hormone that is absorbed by your body. If you are taking any of these drugs, separate them from this medication by at least 4 hours.
Symptoms of low thyroid hormone levels include tiredness, muscle aches, constipation, dry skin, weight gain, slow heartbeat, or sensitivity to cold. Tell your doctor if your condition worsens or persists after several weeks of taking this medication.
1 tablet Eltroxin 25 μg contains 25 microgram Eltroxin sodium.
1 tablet Eltroxin 50 μg contains 50 microgram Eltroxin sodium.
1 tablet Eltroxin 75 μg contains 75 microgram Eltroxin sodium.
1 tablet Eltroxin 100 μg contains 100 microgram Eltroxin sodium.
Other Ingredients: Corn starch, croscarmellose sodium, gelatine, lactose monohydrate, magnesium stearate.
The goal of replacement therapy is to achieve and maintain a clinical and biochemical euthyroid state. The goal of suppressive therapy is to inhibit growth and/or function of abnormal thyroid tissue. The dose of Eltroxin™ (Eltroxin sodium tablets) that is adequate to achieve these goals depends on a variety of factors including the patient’s age, body weight, cardiovascular status, concomitant medical conditions, including pregnancy, concomitant medications, and the specific nature of the condition being treated. Hence, the following recommendations serve only as dosing guidelines. Dosing must be individualized and adjustments made based on periodic assessment of the patient’s clinical response and laboratory parameters.
Eltroxin™ (Eltroxin sodium tablets) should be taken in the morning on an empty stomach, at least one-half hour before any food is eaten. Eltroxin™ (Eltroxin sodium tablets) should be taken at least 4 hours apart from drugs that are known to interfere with its absorption.
Due to the long half-life of Eltroxin, the peak therapeutic effect at a given dose of Eltroxin sodium may not be attained for 4-6 weeks.
Caution should be exercised when administering Eltroxin™ (Eltroxin sodium tablets) to patients with underlying cardiovascular disease, to the elderly, and to those with concomitant adrenal insufficiency.
Specific Patient Populations
Hypothyroidism in Adults and in Children in Whom Growth and Puberty are Complete
Therapy may begin at full replacement doses in otherwise healthy individuals less than 50 years old and in those older than 50 years who have been recently treated for hyperthyroidism or who have been hypothyroid for only a short time (such as a few months). The average full replacement dose of Eltroxin sodium is approximately 1.7 mcg/kg/day (e.g., 100-125 mcg/day for a 70 kg adult). Older patients may require less than 1 mcg/kg/day. Eltroxin sodium doses greater than 200 mcg/day are seldom required. An inadequate response to daily doses ≥ 300 mcg/day is rare and may indicate poor compliance, malabsorption, and/or drug interactions.
For most patients older than 50 years or for patients under 50 years of age with underlying cardiac disease, an initial starting dose of 25-50 mcg/day of Eltroxin sodium is recommended, with gradual increments in dose at 6-8 week intervals, as needed. The recommended starting dose of Eltroxin sodium in elderly patients with cardiac disease is 12.5-25 mcg/day, with gradual dose increments at 4-6 week intervals. The Eltroxin sodium dose is generally adjusted in 12.5-25 mcg increments until the patient with primary hypothyroidism is clinically euthyroid and the serum TSH has normalized.
In patients with severe hypothyroidism, the recommended initial Eltroxin sodium dose is 12.5-25 mcg/day with increases of 25 mcg/day every 2-4 weeks, accompanied by clinical and laboratory assessment, until the TSH level is normalized.
In patients with secondary (pituitary) or tertiary (hypothalamic) hypothyroidism, the Eltroxin sodium dose should be titrated until the patient is clinically euthyroid and the serum free-T concentrations, the recommended initial starting dose is 50 mcg/day of Eltroxin sodium.
Infants and Children
Eltroxin therapy is usually initiated at full replacement doses, with the recommended dose per body weight decreasing with age. However, in children with chronic or severe hypothyroidism, an initial dose of 25 mcg/day of Eltroxin sodium is recommended with increments of 25 mcg every 2-4 weeks until the desired effect is achieved.
Hyperactivity in an older child can be minimized if the starting dose is one-fourth of the recommended full replacement dose, and the dose is then increased on a weekly basis by an amount equal to one-fourth the full-recommended replacement dose until the full recommended replacement dose is reached.
Table 3: Eltroxin Sodium Dosing Guidelines for Pediatric Hypothyroidism
AGE Daily Dose Per Kg Body Weight The dose should be adjusted based on clinical response and laboratory parameters (see PRECAUTIONS, Laboratory Tests and Pediatric Use).
Pregnancy– Pregnancy may increase Eltroxin requirements.
Subclinical Hypothyroidism– If this condition is treated, lower Eltroxin sodium dose (e.g., 1 mcg/kg/day) than that used for full replacement may be adequate to normalize the serum TSH level. Patients who are not treated should be monitored yearly for changes in clinical status and thyroid laboratory parameters.
TSH Suppression in Well-differentiated Thyroid Cancer and Thyroid Nodules – The target level for TSH suppression in these conditions has not been established with controlled studies. In addition, the efficacy of TSH suppression for benign nodular disease is controversial. Therefore, the dose of Eltroxin™ (Eltroxin sodium tablets) used for TSH suppression should be individualized based on the specific disease and the patient being treated. In the treatment of well differentiated (papillary and follicular) thyroid cancer, Eltroxin is used as an adjunct to surgery and radioiodine therapy. Generally, TSH is suppressed to < 0.1 mU/L, and this usually requires a Eltroxin sodium dose of greater than 2 mcg/kg/day. However, in patients with high-risk tumors, the target level for TSH suppression may be
Protease Inhibitors: Protease inhibitors (e.g. ritonavir, indinavir, lopinavir) may influence the effect of Eltroxin. Close monitoring of thyroid hormone parameters is recommended. If necessary, the Eltroxin dose has to be adjusted.
Phenytoin: Phenytoin may influence the effect of Eltroxin by displacing Eltroxin from plasma proteins resulting in an elevated fT4 and fT3 fraction. On the other hand, phenytoin increases the hepatic metabolisation of Eltroxin. Close monitoring of thyroid hormone parameters is recommended.
Influence of Eltroxin on Other Medicinal Products: Antidiabetic Medicinal Products: Eltroxin may reduce the effect of antidiabetics. Therefore, it is necessary to check blood glucose levels frequently at the start of thyroid hormone therapy. If necessary, the anti-diabetic dose has to be adjusted.
Coumarin Derivates: Eltroxin may intensify the effect of anticoagulants by displacing them from plasma protein bounds, which may increase the risk of haemorrhage e.g. CNS or gastrointestinal bleeding, especially in elderly patients. Therefore, it is necessary to check the coagulation parameters regularly at the start of and during concomitant therapy. If necessary, the anticoagulant dose has to be adjusted.
The Following Medicinal Products Intensify the Effect of Eltroxin: Salicylates, dicumarol, furosemide, clofibrate;
Salicylates, dicumarol, furosemide in high doses (250 mg), clofibrate and other substances can displace Eltroxin from plasma proteins, resulting in an elevated fT4 fraction.
The Following Medicinal Products May Reduce the Effect of Eltroxin: Orlistat: Hypothyroidism and / or reduced control of hypothyroidism may occur when orlistat and Eltroxin are taken at the same time. This could be due to a decreased absorption of iodine salts and / or Eltroxin.
Sevelamer: Sevelamer may decrease Eltroxin absorption. Therefore, it is recommended that patients are monitored for changes in thyroid function at the start or end of concomitant treatment. If necessary, the Eltroxin dose has to be adjusted.
Tyrosine kinase inhibitors: Tyrosine kinase inhibitors (e.g. imatinib, sunitinib) may decrease the efficacy of Eltroxin. Therefore, it is recommended that patients are monitored for changes in thyroid function at the start or end of concomitant treatment. If necessary, the Eltroxin dose has to be adjusted.
Ion exchange resins: Ion exchange resins (e.g. cholestyramine or cholestipol) inhibit the absorption of Eltroxin. It is therefore recommended that Eltroxin be taken 4 – 5 hours before administration of such agents.
Aluminium containing medicinal products, iron-containing medicinal products, calcium carbonate: Aluminium-containing medicinal products (antacids, sucralfate) have been reported in literature as potentially decreasing the effect of Eltroxin. It is therefore recommended that Eltroxin be administered at least 2 hours prior to the administration of aluminium-containing medicinal products. The same applies to iron-containing medicinal products and calcium carbonate.
Propylthiouracil, glucocorticoids, beta-sympatholytics, and iodine-containing contrast media: These substances inhibit the peripheral conversion of T4 to T3.
Amiodarone: This substance inhibits the peripheral conversion of T4 to T3.
Due to its high iodine content amiodarone can trigger hyperthyroidism as well as hypothyroidism. Particular caution is advised in the case of nodular goiter with possibly unrecognised autonomy.
Sertraline, chloroquine/proguanil: These substances decrease the efficacy of Eltroxin and increase the serum TSH level.
Medicinal Products Leading to Hepatic Enzyme Induction (e.g. Barbiturates, Carbamazepine): These substances can increase the hepatic clearance of Eltroxin.
Oestrogens: Women using oestrogen-containing contraceptives or postmenopausal women under hormone-replacement therapy may have an increased need for Eltroxin.
Interaction with Food: Soy containing compounds: Soy containing compounds can decrease the intestinal absorption of Eltroxin. Therefore, a dosage adjustment of Eltroxin may be necessary, in particular at the beginning or after termination of nutrition with soy supplements.
Eltroxin side effects
Since thyroid hormone occurs naturally in the body, almost anyone can take Eltroxin. You should not use this medication if you have had a heart attack, a thyroid disorder called thyrotoxicosis, or an adrenal gland problem that is not controlled by treatment.
Before you take Eltroxin, tell your doctor if you have a serious thyroid disorder (thyrotoxicosis), heart disease, coronary artery disease, diabetes, anemia, problems with your pituitary or adrenal glands, a history of blood clots, if you have recently had a heart attack, or if you are having any symptoms of a heart attack (chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling).
If you use insulin or take diabetes medicine by mouth, ask your doctor if your dose needs to be changed when you start using Eltroxin.
Different brands of Eltroxin may not work the same. If you get a prescription refill and your new pills look different, talk with your pharmacist or doctor.
It may take several weeks before your body starts to respond to this medication. Do not stop taking the medicine suddenly, even if you feel well.
Many other medicines can be affected by your thyroid hormone levels. Other medicine may also increase or decrease the effects of Eltroxin. Tell your doctor about all medications you use, start using, or stop using during your treatment with Eltroxin. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Keep a list of all your medicines and show it to any healthcare provider who treats you.
Active ingredient matches for Eltroxin:
Levothyroxine in Bahrain, Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Guyana, Hong Kong, India, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Kuwait, Lithuania, Netherlands, New Zealand, Oman, Philippines, Poland, Qatar, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom.
How should Eltroxin be stored?
You should store your Eltroxin tablets 100mcg below 25°C in a cool dry place.