If you’re looking at treatment options for low thyroid hormone levels, you may want to learn more about Synthroid (levothyroxine).
Synthroid is a prescription drug that’s used to treat the following conditions in adults and some children:
Synthroid comes as a tablet that you swallow. The active ingredient is levothyroxine. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.)
Keep reading for details on Synthroid, its cost, and how to save money on prescriptions.
Note: For more details on Synthroid, see this in-depth article.
The price you pay for Synthroid can vary. Your cost may depend on your treatment plan, your insurance coverage (if you have it), and the pharmacy you use.
To find out how much you’ll pay for Synthroid, including what your out-of-pocket costs may be, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
Note: If you have insurance, you may need to get prior authorization before your insurance provider will cover Synthroid. This means your insurer and your doctor will discuss Synthroid in regard to your treatment. Then the insurance company will determine whether the drug is covered. If Synthroid requires prior authorization and you don’t receive it before you start treatment, you could pay the full cost of the drug.
Be sure to ask your insurance company whether Synthroid requires prior authorization.
If you need help covering the cost of Synthroid or understanding your insurance, take a look at these resources:
On these sites, you can find insurance information, details on drug assistance programs, and links to copay cards, coupons, or other services.
If you have questions about how to pay for your prescription, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. If you have health insurance, you may also need to speak with your insurance provider.
Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about Synthroid and cost.
What’s the cost of Synthroid without insurance vs. with insurance?
If you have health insurance that covers Synthroid, what you’ll pay may vary depending on your specific plan. To find out exactly what you’d pay for Synthroid, check with your insurance provider.
If you pay for Synthroid without insurance, the cost will vary depending on the pharmacy you choose. If you pay out of pocket and want to save money, you may want to talk with your doctor or pharmacist about taking the generic version, levothyroxine, instead. (Generic drugs usually cost less than brand-name drugs.)
Does Synthroid’s cost vary depending on the tablet strength (such as 50 mcg vs. 100 mcg)?
If you use health insurance to pay for Synthroid, your cost will probably be similar regardless of which strength you take. If you pay for Synthroid without insurance, your cost may be a little different depending on the strength. If you need two different strengths of Synthroid to make up your daily dose, you may end up paying for two prescriptions.
Synthroid tablets come in several different strengths, ranging from 25 micrograms (mcg) to 300 mcg. You can learn more about Synthroid’s strengths and dosage in this article.
Synthroid is available as the generic drug levothyroxine. A generic drug is an exact copy of the active drug in a brand-name medication. A generic is considered just as safe and effective as the original drug. And generics generally cost less than brand-name drugs. Levothyroxine comes as tablets and capsules.
Synthroid and levothyroxine are approved for the same uses, so it may be possible to switch from one to the other. If you’ve been prescribed Synthroid and you’re interested in using levothyroxine instead, talk with your doctor. They may prefer that you take one version instead of the other. This is because with certain drugs such as Synthroid, switching from the brand name to the generic (or vice versa) can affect how the medication works in your body.
If you change from Synthroid to levothyroxine, your doctor will likely check your thyroid levels. They’ll adjust your levothyroxine dosage if your thyroid levels change.
If you’re taking Synthroid but want to switch to levothyroxine, you’ll also need to check with your insurance provider. This is because it may only cover one drug or the other.
To find out how the costs of Synthroid and levothyroxine compare, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider. You can also read more about levothyroxine’s cost in this article.
Why is there such a cost difference between brand-name drugs and generics?
Years of research and testing are needed to ensure that brand-name drugs are safe and effective. This testing can make the drugs expensive. The manufacturer of a brand-name drug can sell the drug for up to 20 years. After that, other drugmakers can create generic versions. This competition in the market can lead to lower costs for generics. And because generics have the same active ingredients as brand-name drugs, they don’t need to be studied again. This can also lead to lower generic costs.
If you take Synthroid long term, you may be able to lower your costs in the following ways:
Look into getting a 90-day supply of your medication. You may be able to get a 90-day supply of Synthroid if approved by your insurance company. This could reduce your number of trips to the pharmacy and help lower the cost of Synthroid. If you’re interested in getting a 90-day supply of this drug, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
Use a mail-order pharmacy to get your medication. Using a mail-order pharmacy might help lower your cost for Synthroid. Plus, you could get your medication without leaving home. Some Medicare plans may help cover the cost of mail-order drugs. You may be able to get a 90-day supply of the drug through mail order. The drugmaker also has an option called the Synthroid Delivers Program.
If you don’t have health insurance, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They may be able to suggest online pharmacy options that could work for you.
If you still have questions about the cost of Synthroid, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They may be able to give you a better idea of what you’ll pay for this drug. But if you have health insurance, you’ll need to talk with your insurance provider to learn the actual cost you’d pay for Synthroid.
- If I take a lower dose of levothyroxine, will my cost be less?
- If I can’t afford Synthroid, what are my other options?
- What should I do if my insurance stops covering Synthroid?
To learn more about Synthroid, see these articles:
- Synthroid (levothyroxine)
- All About Synthroid’s Dosage
- Synthroid Interactions: Alcohol, Medications, and Others
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Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.