Thyroid Disorders Community
Top Symptoms of Hypothyroidism
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This patient support community is for discussions relating to thyroid issues, goiter, Graves disease, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Human Growth Hormone (HGH), hyperthyroid, hypothyroid, metabolism, parathyroid, pituitary gland, thyroiditis, and thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH).

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Top Symptoms of Hypothyroidism

While thinking about treating hypothyroidism clinically, as discussed in other posts, I wondered what members would consider as the top 8 symptoms that might have been the ones included in a study where thyroid tests were correlated with hypo symptoms.  Here's my best guess.  Do you have other symptoms that you think are more typical of being hypo?  If so, please post them so we can discuss.


1. weight gain/inability to lose weight
2.  low body temperature
3.  fatigue/exhaustion
4.  hair coarse/dry/falling out
5.  aches in joints/feet
6.  constipation
7.  difficulty concentrating/"brain fog"
8.  diminished sex drive
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21 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
Those symptoms all sound like old age....lol

My biggest is "cold intolerance"..
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Avatar_m_tn
I noticed in one link that a Doctor said that our thyroid levels tend to diminish with age.   So if we hypothyroids  get a good thyroid doctor who will treat our symptoms by properly adjusting FT3 and FT4, then maybe we will never get old. LOL
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1139187_tn?1355710247
I am on no meds, last test yesterday was tsh of 7.50.  My biggest complaints are:



3.  fatigue/exhaustion
7.  difficulty concentrating/"brain fog"
8.  diminished sex drive

Id like to add "ringing in ears" to your list if possible..  
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Avatar_f_tn
How about going for an even ten???

Low BP and/or HR

Swelling

I think we're just not going to KNOW when we get old...what will we have to compare it to?  LOL  We'll both think we're hypo at 105!
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Avatar_m_tn
Bruce:  I know that ear ringing is a big item for you , but I don;t think it is to the general population of hypothyrid patients.

Worthy candidates, goolarra.  Thanks.

Totie:  Funny thing.  After our exchange of posts, I ran across this.
http://www.hormonerestoration.com/files/HRshort.pdf  
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1503643_tn?1311521838
what about inflammation of tendons and slowed dumping/digestion? I have both of these symptoms and were told that they are directly related to my thyroid issues.

what do you think?
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231441_tn?1333896366
I have always found that GERD and Reflux are strongly related to my thyroid status. Both of course are caused by the slowing of body systems in response to hypo.  So constipation also fits in here.

Feeling cold is my no. 1, along with fatigue which hits a few hours after waking.

Extreme exercise intollerance (feeling like one is moving through treacle), everything becomes so hard.

I start thinking suicidal thoughts and become extremely self critical, even self harming when hypo.

OK.  My ten.  Reckon we're all pretty much in agreement.

1. Cold intolerance
2. Fatigue, unrelieved by rest.
3. Weight gain / inability to lose weight.
4. Slowing of gut (constipation / GERD / Reflux).
5. Brain fog, slowed thinking.
6. Depression
7. Exercise intollerance
8. Muscle and joint problems
9. Menstrual problems and reduced sex drive
10. Skin & hair problems
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1503643_tn?1311521838
sounds about right
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798555_tn?1292791151
I think every hypothyroid individual will have somewhat of a different list here. There might be some difference from someone with Hashimoto compared to someone that has medically induced hypo from RAI, TT.

My most bothersome symptoms when levels are in hypo territory are body pain and just trying to stay awake.

What I was surprised not to see here, was insomnia, when hypo........? That symptom alone can cause others.....it's a domino effect.

My top ten hypo symptoms:

1) Overall body muscle, joint, tendon, nerve dis-function, aches, pains
2) Trouble staying awake during the day and great fatigue
3) Anxiety, night time insomnia
4) Heat and cold intolerance with sweats / chills any time
5) Brain fog, slowed thinking
6) Slowing of gut (constipation / GERD / Reflux)
7) HIGH BP when hypO, yes sounds backwards
8) High fasting glucose when hypo
9) Weight loss (sorry, its true)
10) Itchy skin and thinning hair (wait, I'm also 43)

When I'm Euthyroid, most of these go away, or are manageable.

Find it interesting when people living in warmer climates also notice cold intolerance.  Try that, where it actually gets cold. Can you say layers? LOL  

I' know I'll be cold till June.
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Avatar_m_tn
The reason I chose 8 instead of 10 is that the study that I have mentioned showing the correlation of FT3 to symptoms, included only 8 symptoms.  They referred to those as the most typical 8, and got the study participants to subjectively give each of the 8 a numerical rating.  Then they added all the ratings for a given patient and used that total symptom score in the study.  That is why I have said that it was amazing that the correlation was as good as it showed, considering the subjective ratings of symptoms became the independent variable in the statistical analysis.  By the way, you'll recall that FT4 and TSH did not correlate very well at all with these symptom scores.  

Since I don't have access to the details of the study, I was just wondering what members would consider the 8 most typical (most frequent) symptoms of being hypo.  I guess selecting the 8 symptoms is also very subjective, but at least each patient was rating the severity of the same symptoms list.
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393685_tn?1325870933
Your list is right on G.

I think you nailed the top 8 in the original post.

I'm torn with #4 and switching that out with GI distress. but those are farly lateral too with hypothyroid patients. IDK?

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393685_tn?1325870933
I never was a go getter in the #8 complaint... lol so for me, yeah that wouldn't make the cut but it is a prominent symptom for others. :)
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219241_tn?1357815389
In our warmer clime, here in the supposed sunny Land of Oz, I think most of us hypos notice the cold intolerance more because our weather changes so dramatically. It can be, like today, 28C (82F)and yet two days ago barely 14C (52F) When it chops and changes so dramatically, we hypos have a hard time getting adjusted.  I have been in USA when it was snowing and I would rather that than this poor body of mine just getting used to the heat then the next day having to wear a jumper (sweater) and feeling so intolerably chilled so much I can't talk as if I was in -25F!  Back in the 1990's I never worried about it being so radical. Just put a jacket on if it got cooler, never gave it a thought. Now.....man I hate it so much, it's like a bone chilling morgue I sit in!

I have Hashimoto's and no thyroid anymore but I don't think my list is much different to any one else's. I DID have VERY itchy skin prior to diagnosis, and found I had very poor kidney function at that time. ( I thought it was due to my nightly glass of Tawny Port!) Since thyroid removal, barely any itchiness.


To Stella,
For me my list is as follows, in no particular order;

1. Heavy menstruation
2. Mood changes. Irritability, depression.
3. Fatigue which is not restored by resting.
4. Inability to keep thoughts straight, brain feels sluggish, unable to hold a list in my head past 2 items.
5. Weight gain
6. Constipation
7. Hair loss
8. Lack of sex drive
9. Cold intolerance.
10. Heart palpitations.

I have a couple more
11. Inability to cope with stress
12. Worsened Sleep apnoea
13. Alcohol cravings.

Of course, everyone is different, but I seem to have alot of the more common symptoms.

Not everyone is text book though, as LazyMoose states, weight loss instead of weight gain, can and does happen. You look at my list and it can look as if I am just getting into the pre-menopausal state.  I am 47. But I have had these symptoms since at least 1994, and I go nutso trying to convince doctors to look at the whole picture not just palm me off with all the excuses we all know so well.
  
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967168_tn?1343732745
Not sure how accurate this list is, but I think I found it on thyroid.com or something similar - it's a checklist:

My risk factors for hypothyroidism include:
____ I was treated for hypothyroidism in the past (Dr. *** 1998)
____ I have a history of miscarriage (13)
____ I am gaining weight inappropriately (50 lbs)
____ I'm unable to lose weight with diet/exercise
____ I am constipated, sometimes severely
____ I have hypothermia/low body temperature
____ I feel fatigued, exhausted
____ Feeling run down, sluggish, lethargic
____ My hair is coarse and dry, breaking, brittle, falling out (3/31/09)
____ My skin is coarse, dry, scaly, and thick
____ I have a hoarse or gravely voice
____ I have puffiness and swelling around the eyes and face
____ I have pains, aches in joints, hands and feet
____ I am having irregular menstrual cycles (heavier, more frequent)
____ I have had trouble conceiving a baby (1999)
____ I feel depressed (10/2009 Treated by Dr *** w/Lexapro)
____ My moods change easily
____ I have difficulty concentrating
____ I'm more forgetful lately
____ My hair is falling out (3/31/09)
____ I can't seem to remember things
____ I have no sex drive
____ I am getting more frequent infections, that last longer (treated w/Levaquin)
____ I'm snoring more lately (June 2009)
____ I have/may have sleep apnea (Dx 8/22/09)
____ I feel shortness of breath/ and tightness in the chest (Nov 2004)
____ I feel the need to yawn get oxygen
____ My eyes feel sensitive to light (2009)
____ I have strange feelings in neck or throat (2010)
____ I have tinnitus (ringing in ears)
____ I have vertigo
____ I feel some lightheadedness (dx NCS/OI - frequent syncope & pre syncope)
____ I have severe menstrual cramps (dx 2005 Endometriosis & Adenomyosis)
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks Lisa.  That's a long list of possible symptoms.  I was just trying to determine which ones members consider as most important, or most typical.  
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1503643_tn?1311521838
I don't know if I fit into this category, I no longer have a thyroid or isthmus...just one parathyroid left.  I take levoxyl to compensate.

My symptoms are :

1  fatigue/feel tired
2  joint/tendon/muscle pain and inflammation
3  intolerance to cold/heat
4  weight gain/loss (have to keep 2 sets of clothes)
5  nausea and headaches - usually accompany each other
6  Sense of being in a fog - trouble concentrating
7  trouble sleeping
8  hair loss/dryness

Hope this helps  :)
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649848_tn?1357751184
I might have missed it, but I don't think I saw high cholesterol on any list.  My cholesterol rises and falls with my thyroid levels. The doctor who diagnosed me said that hypothyroidism causes high cholesterol, but this many not be a wide spread issue.

Dry, itchy scaly skin is usually a common symptom as well, as is hoarseness.
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1117655_tn?1291332417
alligator skin from head to toe
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Avatar_m_tn
Dry Itchy Skin
"Insomnia"
Digestive problems
Blood pressure spikes
High Cholesterol although contolled with Staten
Fast Heart Rate
Lower than normal body temp. Normal Range for me @ 94.5-97.6
Hip, Lower back pain
Muscle aches
Acid Reflux, controlled by medication
Diagnosed with Hashimoto's, Prior to Taking Vit D and Magnesium, I had severe Muscle pain, also Depression, brain fog and anxiety.

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535882_tn?1396580285
sounds like your hypod.
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1378884_tn?1315509445
I concur with gimel on the original 8.

I am definatly hypo. Right now I am just back from taking another blood test for  FT3,FT4 and antibodies. I have muscle/feet/joint pain/stiffness. I am also having GI issues too. I was doing fairly well until this past week. It's definatly a rollercoster ride. :-)

I have had every symptom listed above by everyone at one time or another throughout this journey. It all depends on how bad my levels are before my med change kicks in.
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