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Is my acne due to my thyroid if my levels are "normal"?

I'm a 23 year old female with Hypothyroidism. I was diagnosed when I was 10 years old. I've been to an endocrinologist regularly and one of the problems I've had since puberty is acne. It's never too bad, but it's never gone. I was put on birth control, but I still have acne. I've seen a dermatologist and after doing what she's told me it's only gotten worse. I know there's a correlation between having a garbage thyroid and acne, but shouldn't it have cleared up since my thyroid levels are now in the normal range on medication, I'm on birth control pills, and doing what my dermatologist tells me? It's so frustrating. Is it still because of my thyroid?
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Avatar universal
You will be interested in the following info I found on the subject of acne and hypothyroidism.  "when thyroid hormone is deficient, the body cannot convert cholesterol to the steroids pregnenolone, progesterone and DHEA. Of these, progesterone is the most important in the prevention and cure of acne—and thyroid hormone plus natural vitamin A work to ensure its formation.

So why not just take straight progesterone?  You can, but if you have a thyroid deficiency, it's most important to correct that, since thyroid plays the greater role in overall metabolic health. Personally, I've never noticed any skin differences from supplementing progesterone, but I did see results once I started supporting my thyroid."

In trying to assess a person's thyroid status the most important indicator should always be an evaluation for symptoms that occur more frequently with hypothyroidism.  So please tell us about all your symptoms.  Also, please post your most current thyroid related test results and reference ranges shown on the lab report.   What thyroid med are you taking and what is the daily dosage?
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I don't have my current lab results and I'm due for a check up actually. I'm currently on levothyroxine 125mcg and have been on this current dosage for the last 3 years.
1756321 tn?1547095325
During the four years of untreated Hashimoto's thyroiditis I had acne. Labs were in "normal" range until 4 years later TSH had finally risen above the range to 6 and I started thyroxine. I've always had clear skin even as a teenager. Until Hashi's arrived.  Back to clear skin again a couple of months after starting thyroxine.
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I've been taking levothyroxine for the past 10 years and I still have acne. Also, I don't have Hashimotos according  to my doctor. My hormone levels were checked and I was told I had high levels of testosterone so was put on Spironolactone for facial hair and acne. It did clear up my acne a little bit, but it didn't do anything for the hair so I stopped taking it as recommended by my doctor.
Avatar universal
First thing to note is that hypothyroidism is not just inadequate thyroid hormone.  Instead it is correctly defined as inadequate T3 effect is tissue throughout the body due to insufficient supply of or response to, thyroid hormone.   There are a number of variables that affect response at the cellular level.  So, the level of  TISSUE T3 EFFECT determines a person's thyroid status.  

Lots of hypothyroid patients taking T4 thyroid med like levothyroxine find that their body does not convert the T4 to T3 adequately.   There is extensive scientific evidence of this.  This results in Free T3 levels that are lower than Free T4, and too low relieve hypo symptoms.    A good thyroid doctor will diagnose and treat hypothyroid patients clinically, by testing and adjusting Free T4 and Free T3 level as needed to relieve hypo symptoms, without being influenced by resultant TSH levels.     So you may need to add a source of T3 to your med.  In the absence of your old test results, we will be better able to assess your status after seeing your new test results.  Do you have any other symptoms at all?

Also hypo patients are frequently deficient in other important areas such as Vitamin D, B12 and ferritin.  If you have not been tested for those you should request to do so.  D should be at least 50, B12 in the upper end of its range, and ferritin should be at least 100.  Ferritin is important to conversion of T4 to T3.

Another thing to always keep in mind is that you should delay your med in the morning before the blood draw for tests, in order to avoid false high results.   Doctors don't usually tell you this, but it is even spelled out in the ATA/AACE Guidelines for Hypothyroidism.  Make sure they always test you for Free T4 and Free T3, not Total T4 and Total T3.  When you have new results, we will be happy to help interpret and advise further.  If you want to confirm anything I have said, click on my name and then scroll down to my Journal and read at least the one page Overview of a paper on Diagnosis and Treatment of Hypothyroidism: a Patient''s Perspective.

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