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The days of scheduling a doctor's appointment and getting in the same day (or even month) are well past. This delay in care is especially true for patients who need to see a specialist like an endocrinologist or thyroid doctor. Even getting same-day care for something that requires more immediate care, like a urinary tract infection or the flu, is near impossible. And most doctors won't prescribe a medication without seeing you first—even for refills. If you find you are in a bind with getting your thyroid medication refilled, read on to learn how simple it is to get a thyroid prescription refill online with telemedicine.
Telemedicine makes it possible for health care professionals like doctors, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants to evaluate, diagnose, and treat patients virtually. With telemedicine platforms, patients can access their health care providers remotely via phone or the internet.
Virtual care can be a perfect solution for people who need a specialist who does not require a hands-on physical exam every visit. For example, people with autoimmune disorders, rheumatological diseases, and endocrine conditions can benefit from getting care virtually. Furthermore, meeting virtually with more flexibility can be especially beneficial for people who require regular management of chronic conditions like hypothyroidism or Hashimoto's thyroiditis.
Aside from specialty care, many primary care and urgent care services are available via telemedicine, including treatments for urinary tract infections, common colds, and the flu. Indeed, several offices are now providing telemedicine services for people who may have a contagious illness to avoid the spread of pathogens in their clinics. In addition, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, more health providers realize the benefits of treating patients remotely. The world is now seeing more and more telemedicine services offered to meet patients where they are at and better our population's health.
Doctors specializing in caring for specific body systems like endocrinologists are overwhelmed with the number of patients they see in the office. Regrettably, this means that patients who need specialized care cannot get in to see their doctor in an acceptable amount of time. Fortunately, patients with a thyroid condition like hypothyroidism can easily get care virtually to avoid long wait times.
Other benefits of telemedicine for hypothyroidism include:
- Ease of access
- Saving patients and their providers time
- Giving people who live in remote areas access to care
- Reducing exposure to pathogens
- Less time away from work
- No need for childcare or eldercare
- More patient follow-through
- More privacy
- Increased personalization
Furthermore, many people do not necessarily require a full-blown office visit to resolve an immediate need, such as getting a refill for a medication they have been taking consistently for several years. Thus, telemedicine can be an excellent solution for simple needs as well as more complex care.
Despite its many benefits, telemedicine isn't for everyone, nor for every circumstance or health condition. For example, people who need a physical evaluation, such as listening to heart and lung sounds or pelvic exams, still need care in a clinical setting. However, with remote lab testing and face-to-face interactions, many providers can help treat conditions from the comfort of your home.
As we have seen, there are many benefits to using telemedicine for your thyroid needs. However, there are a few things you will need to keep in mind when deciding where to get your thyroid care.
- The laws regulating and governing telemedicine practice can vary state-to-state, meaning some services may not be available to you, depending on where you live.
- Doctors licensed in certain states are not always able to provide care across state lines. Thus, most telemedicine companies should ask you first what state you are located in, so they can match you with a provider who is licensed to provide care to you.
- Some medications cannot be prescribed via telemedicine, mainly controlled substances.
- Telemedicine is often a more affordable option or is at least comparable to an in-person doctor's appointment. However, some online health providers cannot accept specific insurances, so take a look at cost from all angles before deciding on your care.
Accessing a board-certified endocrinologist or thyroid doctor is easy with Paloma Health. Our thyroid doctors specialize in treating hypothyroidism , so people with hypothyroidism or Hashimoto's can access care virtually no matter where they are located.
Scheduling a consultation is simple. All you need to do is:
- Select your state.
- Identify if you have already been diagnosed with hypothyroidism.
- Choose your insurance or pay out-of-pocket.
Some insurances will cover part or all of your visit, whereas others will not. You can also choose to pay out-of-pocket. However, consultations are affordable even if your insurance does contribute to your fees.
How to test your thyroid function
If you have not been diagnosed with hypothyroidism, you will want your thyroid function tested with an at-home thyroid test kit. Completing this blood test is straightforward: we mail a kit to you, and all you have to do is perform a finger stick to get a small sample of blood.
Having your labs results before a thyroid consultation is essential so that you and your doctor know what your thyroid function is and can explore how to treat your thyroid health if necessary.
People with hypothyroidism often require routine testing to make sure their thyroid function is stable. Sometimes, your doctor may recommend checking your thyroid after making medication changes as well, or if your symptoms have all of a sudden worsened. Easy access to testing can make it that much easier to take care of your thyroid and feel your best.
The at-home thyroid test kit provides a comprehensive overview of your thyroid by including:
- TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone)
- Free T4 (thyroxine)
- Free T3 (triiodothyronine)
- TPO antibodies (thyroid peroxidase antibodies)
You also have the option to add on Vitamin D and/or Reverse T3. If you are unsure if you should include either of these tests, you can always schedule a complimentary call with a Paloma Health care advisor.
Indeed, you can get an online prescription for your thyroid medication without a face-to-face consultation with a thyroid doctor, if appropriate. Hypothyroidism management does not necessarily require a hands-on physical exam for medication to be prescribed. The main factors considered to determine what treatment is best are a blood test and an account of your symptoms, health history, family history, and lifestyle.
If you are looking to get a thyroid prescription fast, telemedicine may be the quickest option.
It is very straightforward to get an online prescription refill for your thyroid medication. Our thyroid doctors and endocrinologists are board-certified in providing specialty thyroid care, with a particular focus on hypothyroidism. With our online doctor prescription services, you can have your thyroid medication refilled or even a new thyroid medication prescribed to you after bloodwork and a consultation.
Steps to getting a thyroid prescription refill online
One of the biggest frustrations people taking thyroid medication face is getting a prescription refill quickly. And, there are a variety of instances where you may run out of your thyroid medication. For example, you may plain forget to ask for a refill, or your doctor may require an office visit, but you can't get in before your medication runs out. Or, perhaps you are traveling on vacation and forgot it at home. Whatever the case, getting a thyroid prescription refill online for an existing levothyroxine prescription is doable and very simple with Paloma Health's Refill Program.
Follow these steps to get started on getting a thyroid medication refill online:
1. You fill out a short, 5-minute online questionnaire that will give your Paloma Health provider insight into your thyroid condition, medical history, and existing prescription.
2. Once you have completed your questionnaire, a provider will review your information, prescribe the appropriate medication refill, or reach out to you if you have additional questions.
3. After your provider completes your prescription, you can pick up your medication at your preferred retail or online pharmacy.
There are no wait times to book an appointment and no time spent waiting in the doctor's office. Most importantly, every effort is made on our end to keep you and your thyroid healthy so you can dedicate your valuable time and energy to other areas of your life.
Nearly all people with hypothyroidism require thyroid hormone medication to normalize thyroid hormone levels in their bodies. Without this medication, you can suffer from the same symptoms that you may have experienced before you started treatment, including:
- Fatigue and malaise
- Weight gain
- Slowed heart rate
- High blood pressure
- Brain fog
- Depression and sadness
- Thinning hair and eyebrows
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Irregular periods
- Dry skin
- Cold intolerance
In severe (albeit rare) cases, some people with untreated hypothyroidism may experience myxedema coma, which can be life-threatening. This condition can be caused by forgetting your medication, an illness, trauma, or surgery. Symptoms of myxedema coma include:
- Weakness and lethargy
- Low body temperature
- Swelling, especially in the face, neck, tongue, and limbs
- Trouble breathing
If you have these symptoms, it is paramount that you seek emergency medical care. Similarly, people with hypothyroidism should communicate with loved ones and those they live with about the potential for myxedema coma and help them learn how to recognize these symptoms.
Running out of your thyroid medication can be a setback, especially if you do not quickly get back on your medication. As you may recall from when you first began treatment, it can take several weeks to titrate your medication to the correct dose. Falling off your medication schedule may mean you have to repeat blood work and titrate back up to your therapeutic dose, depending on how long it has been since you last took your medication.
What to do if you miss a dose of your thyroid medication
If you miss a dose of thyroid medication, you should take it as soon as you realize you forgot it. However, if you are getting close to when you need to take your next dose, skip the missed dose and make sure to take your next dose on time.
Suppose you miss several days in between doses. In that case, you will want to contact your doctor to see what they recommend for restarting your medication. They may want to do bloodwork to assess your thyroid levels as you get back on your medication, or they may even require you to come to the office.
How to avoid lapses between refills of thyroid medication
Running out of thyroid medication can lead to some health consequences, some of which can be severe. Therefore, you must have a plan in place to ensure you never run out of your thyroid medication.
Know your refill count
Once you are on a stable dose of your medication, make sure you know how many refills you have before you need to see your doctor next. Set a reminder on your phone or your calendar when you have one refill left, so you make sure to get an appointment scheduled with your doctor. Often, your pharmacy will also let you know when you are low on refills so you can plan your appointment, but don't bank on it.
Schedule your appointments well in advance
Most endocrinologists will want to see you once a year for a thyroid function test and medication refill. However, if you see multiple doctors, it can help to group your doctor's visits together in a specific month, so you remember when you were last seen and when you need to be seen again. For example, some people like to do all of their wellness visits and preventative care screenings at the beginning of every year, so they don't have to worry about appointments staggered throughout the year.
No matter how you choose to schedule your appointments, make sure to do so well in advance as it can take several weeks to get seen. Alternatively, you can get your thyroid care through Paloma Health and schedule a visit at the drop of a hat so that you never miss an appointment or fall behind on your medications.
Get multiple months-supply at a time
If your insurance allows or it is affordable to pay out-of-pocket, see if you can get a few months of your thyroid prescription at one time. Many pharmacies will fill up to three months at a time, which makes it less likely that you will forget to pick up a refill.
Opt for a delivery service
Sometimes, getting to the pharmacy is one of the biggest roadblocks to getting your medication refilled on time. With more online prescription services, it is easier to have your prescriptions mailed to your home address. Many mail-order pharmacies also deliver medication in bundles of up to three months.
Get text or call notifications from your pharmacist
Many pharmacies offer a service that helps you remember to pick up your prescriptions or to refill them. Make sure your contact information is current, so they can send you reminders as needed.
Have a backup plan
Life can get in the way, and we can forget to get medications refilled on time. If you are in a pinch, are traveling, or can't get in to see your doctor, have a plan in place for getting your medications. Paloma Health can help you get thyroid medication refills of levothyroxine quickly when you need it.
Good thyroid care goes beyond medication. It also requires consistent follow-up and support when your symptoms are out-of-whack or your health status changes (like you become pregnant or ill). Paloma Health believes that a healthy thyroid requires a well-rounded approach, which is why we offer services like dietary support from thyroid nutritionists in addition to thyroid testing and treatment. We also ensure you have excellent follow-up care with an individualized approach to managing your thyroid.
Here are some other considerations you will want to take into account when you are treating hypothyroidism:
Follow a thyroid-healthy diet
Dietary stress can have a significant impact on your thyroid health. Most people with hypothyroidism have Hashimoto's, an autoimmune disorder where your immune system mistakenly attacks your thyroid gland. Research suggests that autoimmune conditions like Hashimoto's may stem from your gut or can be exacerbated by the items we ingest.
Adhering to a thyroid-friendly diet can help you gain more control over your thyroid health as a whole. Eliminating certain foods can not only decrease thyroid and system-wide inflammation, but it can improve how your body absorbs medications like levothyroxine. Furthermore, you can correct nutritional deficiencies that may hinder your thyroid hormone production.
If you are unsure where to start with a thyroid-friendly diet, meet with a Paloma Health thyroid nutritionist to make an individualized diet plan and check out this review of Paloma Health's platform.
Take thyroid supplements
Thyroid supplements are in no way a replacement for thyroid medication. However, by increasing your intake of certain nutrients, you can help optimize your thyroid and whole-body health. Make sure to consult with a Paloma Health thyroid doctor before choosing or changing your dietary supplement.
Need a thyroid prescription refill online with telemedicine? Fill out this form to get your levothyroxine prescription sent to your preferred pharmacy.