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      Post count: 93172

      Hi Ramone,

      I understand from my endo that the stats in Canada are a one in three
      chance in being cured with drug therapy. However, the bad news
      is that, like you said, you can relapse within two years. I am still
      undecided re: treatment so appreciate your comments. Initially, I thought
      I would try the drug therapy and if that did not work try the
      RAI if necessary. My husband and I are anxious to start a family though
      so have to really weigh the best alternative for my health and plans for a
      family. I will have to decide soon.

      Thanks for the feedback, Diane

        Post count: 93172

        Hi Diane,

        Here in the UK the treatment of choice seems to be drug therapy and I have
        to say that after the initial adjustments to sort out the dosage I’ve been
        fine. Just to add that recent research suggests that antithyroid drugs
        may have some effect on the underlying cause of Graves, the autoantibodies,
        which seem to decrease in response to the drug therapy. I don’t think this
        happens with RAI. Disadvantage though is the possibility of relapse especially
        if you don’t take the drug therapy for long enough (usually about 18 months).
        Good luck with your decision.


          Post count: 93172

          Dear Diane, In other countries, Europe and Japan for example,
          they do drug tx alot and the over all success rates of remission are 55%
          which is much better than 1 in 3. My endo says that there are different
          ways of doing the drugs too. If you want article refs. e-mail me and
          I’ll look them up. Don’t want to bug you, But I can identify with your dilemma. Jeannette

            Post count: 93172

            Hi Diane,

            There are drugs which you can take during pregnancy which don’t cross the
            placenta so don’t affect the baby. PTU is the one I think – there are
            some messages about it around the middle of november, I think, if you look
            back a bit on this BB. Only thing is drug treatment needs to be taken for
            at least 18 months to protect against relapse, and pregnancy can trigger another
            episode so I guess you’re better off not waiting for remission (that’s only
            my opinion so ignore it if you want!).
            Treatment itself worked pretty fast for me – within 2 weeks of starting
            carbimazole I went underactive (which I thought was worse!)and it took a few
            more months with added thyroxine to feel really well but I was functioning
            better than I had been after a couple of months and was getting on OK at
            work, going to aerobics etc.which was impossible before.
            I can’t comment on the RAI, except to say that they don’t offer it here
            if you’re not post-menopausal – I think surgery is more common but maybe that’s a
            difference in the medical culture here.
            Sorry if this is a bit long!

              Post count: 93172

              There IS a difference in the treatment options from country to country.
              USA gives much more RAI than any other country. Japan almost never.

                Post count: 93172

                Hi Jeanette-
                Sorry for the delay in my response. I have been away from the office for
                a couple of days. I am leaning more and more towards drug therapy and
                thank you for your advice. I know one person who did the RAI and it
                destroyed her thyroid so is stuck having to take a replacement for the
                rest of her life.

                I’m also worried about the affects of RAI if I were to get pregnant. Most of
                the research I have done suggests that there is no worries, however, there
                is still that doubt. I would love to get a list of reference materials
                from you. I am not seeing my endo until Tuesday now so will find out
                more from him I’m sure. In the meantime, I continue to gather information.

                Thanks so much for your help Jeanette! Talk to you soon, Diane

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