Brought to you by Medinformer
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMSBack to top
- Increased sensitivity to cold
- Dry skin
- Weight gain
- Puffy face
- Muscle weakness
- Elevated blood cholesterol level
- Muscle aches, tenderness and stiffness
- Pain, stiffness or swelling in your joints
- Heavier than normal or irregular menstrual periods
- Thinning hair
- Slowed heart rate
- Impaired memory
COMPLICATIONS OF UNTREATED HYPOTHYROIDISMBack to top
- Goiter – constant stimulation of your thyroid to release more hormones may cause the gland to become larger.
- Heart problems – increased risk of heart disease, primarily because high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol — the “bad” cholesterol Hypothyroidism can also lead to an enlarged heart and heart failure.
- Mental health issues – depression and slowed mental functioning.
- Peripheral neuropathy – damage to the nerves that carry information from your brain and spinal cord to the rest of your body, for example, your arms and legs. Signs and symptoms of peripheral neuropathy may include pain, numbness and
tingling in the area affected by the nerve damage. It may also cause muscle weakness or loss of muscle control.
- Myxoedema – rare, life-threatening condition is the result of long-term, undiagnosed hypothyroidism. Its signs and symptoms include:
low blood pressure, decreased breathing,
decreased body temperature, unresponsiveness
and even coma.
- Infertility – Low levels of thyroid hormone can interfere with ovulation.
- Birth defects – babies born to women with untreated thyroid disease have a higher risk of birth defects – intellectual and developmental problems
RISK FACTORS Back to top
- Women have been seen to have a higher risk than men.
- Risk increases with age especially if you are over sixty years of age.
- Having a family history of any thyroid disease increases your risk as well as having a first-degree family member who has hypothyroidism.
- Autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes or celiac disease has been seen to increase the risk.
NOTE: Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that is inherited. An inflammatory reaction occurs after eating gluten activated the immune system.
This immune response attacks the small intestine and as a results causes damage to it. 
- Receiving radiation therapy to your neck or upper chest increase the risk.
- Being treated with radioactive iodine or anti-thyroid medications may cause hypothyroidisms if the dosage is high.
- Surgery to the thyroid may cause hypothyroidism.
- Pregnancy of six months postpartum may cause hypothyroidism.
1. Gentile, J.M. [Internet]. 4 Lifestyle Tips for Hypothyroidism. America: Remedy Health Media
LLC; [updated 2019; cited 2019 Aug 15]. Available from: https://www.endocrineweb.com/conditions/hypot
2. Rodriguez, D. [Internet]. 8 Ways to live better when Diagnosed with Hypothyroidism. New York, US;
[updated 2017 Oct 27; cited 2019 Aug 15]. Available
Mayo Clinic Staff [Internet]. Hypothyroidism
9underactive thyroid). America: Mayo Clinic;
[updated 2018 Dec 04; cited 2019 Aug 23]. Available
Norman, J. [Internet]. Hypothyroidism: Overview.
Causes and Symptoms. New Jersey: endocrineWeb;
[updated 2019 Jul 10; cited 2019 Aug 23]. Available
WebMD [Inetrnet]. Hypothyroidism. America:
WebMD LLC; [updated 2019 Aug 16; cited 2019 Aug
23]. Available from:
Celiac Disease Foundation [Internet]. What is Celiac
Disease?. America: Celiac Disease Foundtation; [cited
2019 Aug 26]. Available from:
For more health information
Click on the body area you want to know more about. Select a related health topic from the menu
WHY IS IT A PROBLEM?4a Dry skin may not only be unsightly, but also itchy and cause more complex skin conditions. It is often a lifelong problem. Signs and symptoms of dry skin depend on your age, your health, where you live, time spent outdoors and the cause of the problem. Dry skin is likely…
WHAT IS CHOLESTEROL? A fat molecule that is white, insoluble and waxy Essential for many metabolic processes There are different types of cholesterol HDL is the ‘good’ cholesterol LDL is the ‘bad’ cholesterol Triglycerides, a type of fat, also form part of the lipid profile Eating foods rich in saturated fats will increase the amount…