Identify a medical Condition?

A female friend has loss great amounts on hair on her head and has thinned down to a few strands here and there over her head. She has also gained weight through her neck all the way down to her hips, but her arms and legs are very thin. Thin to the point that they are almost frail and resemble the extremities of a 50+ year old woman, she is only 34? Could this be a thyroid issue?

3 comments

  • fiona

    Has your friend examined her condition to her local doctor?
    it’s wise to do so, as she may need the necessary treatment involved,
    based on what you have said, thyroid seemed to be the issue here,
    since her neck gland has enlarged..
    Here are the main symptoms if her problem is thyroid condition:

    10. Muscle and Joint Pains, Carpal Tunnel/Tendonitis Problems.

    Aches and pains in your muscles and joints, weakness in the arms and a tendency to develop carpal tunnel in the arms/hands and tarsal tunnel in the legs, can all be symptoms of undiagnosed thyroid problems.

    9. Neck Discomfort/Enlargement.

    A feeling of swelling in the neck, discomfort with turtlenecks or neckties, a hoarse voice or a visibly enlarged thyroid can all be symptoms of thyroid disease.

    To help find out if your friend’s thyroid may be enlarged, try a simple "Thyroid Neck Check" test at home.

    8. Hair/Skin Changes.

    Hair and skin are particularly vulnerable to thyroid conditions, and in particular, hair loss is frequently associated with thyroid problems. With hypothyroidism, hair frequently becomes brittle, coarse and dry, while breaking off and falling out easily. Skin can become coarse, thick, dry,and scaly. In hypothyroidism, there is often an unusual loss of hair in the outer edge of the eyebrow. With hyperthyroidism, severe hair loss can also occur, and skin can become fragile and thin.

    7. Bowel Problems.

    Severe or long-term constipation is frequently associated with hypothyroidism, while diarrhea or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is associated with hyperthyroidism.

    6. Menstrual Irregularities and Fertility Problems.

    Heavier, more frequent and more painful periods are frequently associated with hypothyroidism, and shorter, lighter or infrequent menstruation can be associated with hyperthyroidism. Infertility can also be associated with undiagnosed thyroid conditions.

    5. Family History.
    If your friend have a family history of thyroid problems, she is at a higher risk of having a thyroid condition herself. She may not always be aware of thyroid problems in her family, though, because among older people, it is often referred to as "gland trouble" or "goiter." So pay attention to any discussions of glandular conditions or goiter or weight gain due to "a glandular problem," as these may be indirect ways of referring to thyroid conditions.

    4. Cholesterol Issues

    High cholesterol, especially when it is not responsive to diet, exercise or cholesterol-lowering medication, can be a sign of undiagnosed hypothyroidism. Unusually low cholesterol levels may be a sign of hyperthyroidism.

    3. Depression and Anxiety.

    Depression or anxiety — including sudden onset of panic disorder — can be symptoms of thyroid disease. Hypothyroidism is most typically associated with depression, while hyperthyroidism is more commonly associated with anxiety or panic attacks. Depression that does not respond to antidepressants may also be a sign of an undiagnosed thyroid disorder.

    2. Weight Changes.

    Your friend may be on a low-fat, low-calorie diet with a rigorous exercise program, but are failing to lose or gain any weight. Or she may have joined a diet program or support group, such as Weight Watchers, and you are the only one who isn’t losing any weight. Difficulty losing weight can be a sign of hypothyroidism. She may be losing weight while eating the same amount of food as usual — or even losing while eating more than normal. Unexplained weight changes and issues can be signs of both hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

    1. Fatigue.

    Feeling exhausted when your friend wake up, feeling as if 8 or 10 hours of sleep a night is insufficient or being unable to function all day without a nap can all be signs of thyroid problems. (With hyperthyroidism, she may also have night time insomnia that leaves her exhausted during the day.)

  • It could be thyroid plus something else driving the exaggerated hormonal changes. Endometriosis, ovarian cysts and uterine tumors come to mind. She had better get in for a complete metabolic workup and full physical exam or she will pay with a very short life. Consider it cancer until proven otherwise. She needs to take this that seriously–and also rule out cancer!

  • greydoc6

    My guess would be Cushing Syndrome, often caused by a pituitary tumor that produces excess ACTH, causing an elevation of cortisol and a cascade of other hormonal problems. Excess hair (hirsutism) is common, but male pattern baldness may ensue. Weight gain in the central part of the body – truncal obesity – was the key clue.

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