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  • Anonymous
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      The side effects vary so much. Many people don’t experience any side-effects. The most common, and I experienced this for a short time at the beginning, was itching with rash…but then again I experience itching when (and I am currently) hyperthyroid. The side effects are not typically really bad, just annoying I suppose. But it is easy to stop the meds if they cause side-effects. All you have to do is wait a couple days (usually 3-4) after stopping the meds to have the RadioIodine therapy.
      I can’t really tell you much about RAI. I ahven’t gone that route yet.

      Good Luck,


        Post count: 93172

        Hi, Michael:

        According to my drug reference information on the ATDs:

        “Symptoms of overdose: Changes in menstrual periods; coldness; constipation; dry puffy skin; headache; listlessness or sleepiness; muscle aches; swelling in the front of the neck; unual tiredness or weakness; weight gain (unusual).

        “Check with your doctor IMMEDIATELY if any of the following side effects occur:

        Less common — cough; fever or chills (continuing or severe); general feeling of discomfort, illness or weakness; hoarseness; mouth sores; pain, swelling, or redness in joints; throat infection

        Rare — yellow eyes or skin”

        “Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:

        More common — fever (mild and temporary) skin rash or itching

        Rare — Backache; black, tarry stools; blood in urine or stools; shortness of breath; increase in bleeding or bruising; increase or decrease in urination; numbness of tingling of fingers, toes or face; pinpoint red spots on skin; swelling of feet or lower legs; swollen lymph notes; swollen salivary glands.”

        In addition: “While you are being treated with antithyroid agents, and after you stop treatment with it, DO NOT HAVE ANY IMMUNIZATIONS (VACCINATIONS) WITHOUT YOUR DOCTOR’S APPROVAL. Antithyroid agents may lower your body’s resistance and there is a chance you might get the infection the immunization is meant to prevent. In addition, other person living in your hosehold should not take or have recently taken oral polio vaccine since there is a chance they could pass the polio virus on to you. Also avoid other persons who have tasken oral polio vaccine. Do not get close to them, and do not stay in the same room with them for very long. If you cannot take these precautions, you should consider wearing a protective face mask that covers the nose and mouth.”

        It is important to understand, Michael, that while the ATDs have some dangerous potential side effects, that these side effects are RARE. You need to know what the signs might be, though, to protect yourself should you be unlucky enough to have one of them. If you decide to do the ATDs you will be given regular and periodic blood workups to check your white blood cell count. The ATDs can suppress the bone marrow (hence all the warnings about vaccinations), and in extremely rare circumstances life threatening infections can result.

        As far as RAI is concerned: As background, the effects of radiation on the body are cumulative over a lifetime. In other words, the sun tan you get today, is added to the dental xrays you’ve had, is added to………” That said, the amount of radiation involved with RAI treatment has not been shown to increase the likelihood of any cancers or leukemias in long-term studies, and it does not make you feel ill at the time of the treatment (unlike, for instance, the way people feel who are receiving radiation for cancer treatment). The only direct side effects of RAI are a slight sore, or raspy throat, and a temporary increase in hyper symptoms (due to the release of stored thyroid hormone from dying thyroid cells). Some people consider going hypothyroid a “side effect”,
        but since the objective of RAI, and surgery, is to eliminate the thyroid (or enough of it to try to assure us that we never again will be hyperthyroid), it could be debated whether this should be considered a “side effect” or an “objective.” If you do, in fact, become hypothyroid after RAI treatment, then you must take replacement hormone.

        The side effects of the replacement hormone generally have to do with either getting too much or too little of it. It is very important that you receive the correct dose for YOU, so regular blood checks are important. Too much will bring on hyper symptoms; too little will bring on hypo symptoms. In addition, a very few people are allergic to the fillers and dyes that are used to make the chemical into a pill. This can result in skin rashes or hives. There are a variety of forms, however, for the replacement hormone, and being allergic to one does not mean you will be allergic to the others.

        I hope this helps.

        Good luck with your decision.


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