Does Levothyroxine Cause Osteoporosis?

does levothyroxine cause osteoporosis
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Levothyroxine, a type ofthyroid hormone, is prescribed to treat hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is a condition caused by an underactivethyroid gland. In some cases, levothyroxine can cause side effects, including osteoporosis, which is a condition in which the bones become weak and brittle. In this article, we will look at the link between levothyroxine and osteoporosis, as well as how to prevent the development of this condition.

What is Levothyroxine?

Levothyroxine is a synthetic form of the thyroid hormone thyroxine. It is used to treat hypothyroidism, a condition in which the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough hormones. Levothyroxine helps to restore the normal level of thyroid hormones in the body and can improve symptoms such as fatigue, weight gain, and depression.

What is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones become weak and brittle, making them more likely to break. It is a common condition, especially in older adults, and can increase the risk of fractures. The most common symptom of osteoporosis is bone pain. Other symptoms include a stooped posture, loss of height, and fractures.

The Link Between Levothyroxine and Osteoporosis

There is some evidence to suggest that levothyroxine can cause osteoporosis. In some cases, levothyroxine can cause an increase in the production of parathyroid hormone (PTH), which can lead to an increase in calcium in the blood. This can lead to the bones becoming weak and brittle. A study from the Yale School of Medicine found that people taking levothyroxine were more likely to develop osteoporosis compared to those who didn’t take the medication.

Who is at Risk of Developing Osteoporosis?

Anyone can develop osteoporosis, but there are certain factors that can increase the risk. These include: older age, female gender, low body weight, a family history of osteoporosis, smoking, and a sedentary lifestyle. People taking levothyroxine are also at an increased risk of developing osteoporosis.

Preventing Osteoporosis

It’s important to take steps to prevent the development of osteoporosis. Here are some tips:

Eat a Healthy Diet

Eating a healthy diet that is rich in calcium and vitamin D can help to maintain strong bones. Foods such as dairy products, leafy green vegetables, nuts, and fish are all good sources of these nutrients.


Regular exercise can help to build and maintain strong bones. Weight-bearing exercises such as walking, running, and lifting weights are particularly beneficial. It’s also important to do exercises that work the muscles and tendons around the bones to help protect them.

Quit Smoking

Smoking can increase the risk of osteoporosis and other bone-related conditions. Quitting smoking can help to reduce the risk.

Take Supplements

If you are not getting enough calcium and vitamin D through your diet, it’s a good idea to take supplements. Talk to your doctor about the best supplements for you.


Levothyroxine can increase the risk of osteoporosis. It’s important to be aware of this risk and take steps to prevent the development of this condition. Eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, quitting smoking, and taking supplements can all help to protect your bones. If you are taking levothyroxine and are concerned about your bone health, talk to your doctor.

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