Main Article on Hypothyroidism Question: For hypothyroidism, what were the symptoms and signs you experienced? Submit Your Comment Comment from: Pam, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: January 25 My discovery of hypothyroidism: I have always been very healthy and just gave up running at age 68. My symptoms that I attributed to aging and maybe the start of dementia were as follows: worsening depression, and needing 10 to 12 hours of sleep per night, only to yawn all day! I felt it was very hard to concentrate or focus on a task from start to finish, had no energy, anxiety, constipation, even bladder control problems I never had before (uncontrollable urine output that soaked my pants and went into my shoes (while shopping)! I gained weight but did not feel hungry or eat much, had leg and foot cramps along with muscle pain that moved around which made no sense, dry mouth, extremely dry skin some times in patches; my legs and heels were first, finally smaller areas on my face. Moisturizing all these places made no or little difference! I just went from myself to feeling like I was getting old superfast, it was changing my life from being a 'go-getter' to a 'couch and house potato.' I had been under a lot of stress for almost two years before this. I changed doctors and my new doctor decided to check my thyroid hormones. My TSH was very low. She put me on Synthroid (levothyroxine), tested blood again 6 week later and when she got the results she doubled the dosage! First it felt like I was coming out of a fog, then tasks were easier to do, then I began feeling more like my old self little by little. It is unreal what kind of damage that tiny little gland can control! Thinking back this must have been going on for a while. Once the medication started, 1 tiny pill each morning with a full glass of water, it really didn't take long to find the right dose and now I feel so much better. Get your TSH, T-3, and T4 checked if you have some of these symptoms, you will so glad you did, it is so underdiagnosed. Especially females my age or even younger! Comment from: likenohope, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 29 I just found out today that there is a good chance I have hypothyroidism. With me I have the sweats so bad that my hair is soaked and it comes on with no warning. I have depression, no energy and never want to leave my home. My face swells and my hands are so bad they blister because they rub together, my left clavicle popped out and is no longer attached to the sternum. I am never hungry, have lost too much weight, the muscles in both arms are damaged and I know there is more, but I have suffered for so many years I was ready to give up on life. Now that we know I can be treated and hope I get better. Comment from: 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 17 With my hypothyroidism, I pretty much experienced the fatigue, lack of appetite, weight gain, and some confusion at times. I kept asking my doctor to check my thyroid hormones, since there is a family history. Unfortunately, if you come back in the normal range, which is quite large, they tell you you're normal. I found out I was coming back in the very low normal range, and I evidently was more toward the high normal range when I was feeling great. I was lucky and found an internist who was willing to listen and go back to previous tests to see that I was in fact having a problem. Now taking Armour Thyroid, and feel great! Moral of the story, if you feel like it's not right, it probably isn't. Find a doctor who will listen! Published: August 27 I have experienced many symptoms for a number of years. In fact, I was treated for depression instead of hypothyroidism for several years. At times, I thought I was "losing my mind" it was so severe. My symptoms included: confusion, inability to think clearly, total lack of energy, exhaustion, loss of interest in "everything," aches and pains (mainly in my legs/ankles/feet), and gained 35 pounds despite a lack of appetite. This has been a long struggle for me with problems at home and work (to be expected when I cannot think clearly). However, things are improving now -- there is hope! Comment from: Didi, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 15 I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism about 15 years ago and underwent a partial thyroidectomy due to a nodule the size of a jelly bean. I went 3 years without having to take any medications at all. After blood work every six months for those 3 years, my TSH rose and doctors put me on 50 MCG Synthroid which I took until last week. I went for blood work 2 weeks ago and my TSH has risen from 1.1 to 2.83 to 4.15 over the last year. Doctor has now raised my Synthroid to 75 MCG and I am having a very hard time adjusting. I have night sweats, headaches, sleeplessness, wrist and hip pain. I saw the doctor today and he is going to try 50 MCG alternating with 75 MCG for 2 weeks and then 75 MCG daily. It looks like it may be the last hurrah for what is left of my thyroid and I am not looking forward to the time it might take to regulate it. Comment from: Lana, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 12 I am a 25 year old female, diagnosed 20 plus years ago with hypothyroidism. I am taking medicine for 10 years or more. I am not your usual hypothyroid patient. I am less than 95 lb., and my energy varies day to day with vitamin supplement. After a brief stint with gall bladder removal, the practitioners told me conflicting results of my thyroid tests. Comment from: Chanel, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: December 31 For the last couple of months I had all these weird symptoms. I felt so weak in my muscles; I had muscle twitches, and tingling in my hands and feet, with unexplained weight gain. I went to the doctor because I thought I was low on vitamins. The doctor did blood tests and found out I have hypothyroidism. I started my medication 4 days ago. I hope the medication works! QUESTION Where is the thyroid gland located? See Answer Comment from: Vicki, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 06 I have had symptoms most of my life, infertility, depression, always cold, but less than a month ago I ended up in the emergency room. While walking a short distance to my car in winter, I became very cold, had a migraine, threw up several times and eventually had to call 911 on my way home. They could not find a temp or BP. I couldn't breathe very well. After warming me up for over an hour, my temp. was 95. I had been telling my doctor about my problems, she put me on Synthroid, evidently it didn't work. I told her I thought it was getting worse, not better. I saw her less than two months before this incident with that very complaint. At the hospital I was diagnosed with Hashimoto Thyroiditis - acquired hypothyroidism. My psychiatrist put me on Armour Thyroid and after three days my migraine finally went away. I am still exhausted, can't get out of bed for more than a few hours, temp yesterday was 97. I see my GP on Friday; I am going to give her a piece of my mind! Comment from: Debbie, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: December 02 I'm 41 and have been getting treated for hypothyroidism for two years. I asked my doctor to retest me for thyroidism due to the steady increase in my weight in spite of increased activity and my daily need for a nap around 3 or 4pm. Once I had my blood work done prior to 8 am, suddenly my results showed hypothyroidism. My medication has been changed from Armour to Synthroid and my weight has continued to rise. I'm the only one walking around at work without a jacket on because I seldom feel the cold. I am still battling depression and fuzzy thinking. And it seems my blood is sluggish no matter my fluid intake when I go in early for blood workups, I have low blood pressure and lack of hydration according to the nurse. Comment from: Mustang Mamma, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 07 I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism seven months after my third child was born. I was losing my baby weight really quickly, then suddenly I started gaining weight as fast as I had lost it. I read in a thyroid book that that sometimes happens after you've had a baby -- it's as if you have a burst of hyperthyroidism and then it goes to hypothyroidism and that sometimes it goes back to normal --mine didn't. I was tired, couldn't get off the couch, and thought I had post-partum depression. I started having heart palpitations, for which I decided to go to the doctor. He tested my TSH and found my levels very high. That was seven years ago, and now I can tell when my levels are out of normal range and need to be rechecked. I have no energy and start to feel depressed again, losing interest in everything. I even start to feel that way when I am on the high side of normal – low-to-normal range is best for me. I've heard Armour Thyroid helps with the brain fuzz and to help lose weight, and I plan on asking my doctor about it at my next checkup. I have never lost the weight on Synthroid and, in fact, have continued to gain. Comment from: 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: October 07 I have been treated for hypothyroidism now for several years. I was first treated with Synthroid for a couple of years and had almost no help from it; I actually felt better when I went off of it. The doctor had a fit so he set me up with an endocrinologist who agreed to give me the old-time treatment of Armour Thyroid, which took care of the major symptoms, pretty quickly. I would recommend it as this is inherited from my father's side of the family. I have only had to have the Armour mg raised once in 10 years. Comment from: caroline, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 17 I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism some 20 years ago when I was in my mid-thirties. I have been taking thyroxine ever since. My blood is tested every 6 months and apparently is normal, but I still have most of the symptoms of hypothyroidism: fatigue,a low metabolism, low blood pressure, slight anemia, slow heart rate, thin hair, poor immunity and depression. I wish I knew what could be done about this. Published: August 27 I am a 49-year-old female. I always knew I had a family history of hypothyroidism (my father, his two sister as well as their mother were all diagnosed in their late forties to early fifties) but I didn't have health insurance so hadn't been to see my physician for an exam for over eight years. However, I didn't know there were symptoms for which I should have been vigilant. I started becoming increasingly constipated over the last two to three years. I also began to become increasingly less tolerant of cold. My periods became erratic then quit all together. I slowly began to gain weight (over two years about 20 pounds). I began to feel more and more "bloated" with no appetite. I became increasingly depressed and mentally "fuzzy," forgetting things and just not feeling like myself in terms of mental acuity. I was able to see my physician three weeks ago. I didn't think to mention ANY of these symptoms because I had pretty much justified all of them in my mind, making the assumption they were all "natural" lifecycle changes. My physician took blood work including TSH level, and he put me on levothyroxine three weeks ago. I am starting to feel more like my old self, though I am still working on building up my energy reserve. I just started my period yesterday, which my physician said was due to getting my thyroid level back in the "normal" range. Comment from: Kalika, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 26 I've been on levothroxine for almost 3 years now. I never really showed physical symptoms other then some slight hair loss but that could also be menopause. My numbers showed hypothroidism, so I was put on levothroxine. SLIDESHOW Hyperthyroidism Symptoms and Treatment See Slideshow Comment from: KellyAnneG, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: April 23 I'm 26. Hypothyroidism was discovered by my OB/GYN a few months ago after a yearly blood test she gives me. I had no idea I had hypothyroidism! The doctor told me this is why I'm having hot flashes and night sweats before my time! I gained 10 pounds but that fluctuates wildly depending on what time of the month it is. My periods were lasting 10 days and were very heavy during the last five days; so much I was afraid I was bleeding too much! After starting Synthroid, my periods are back to normal and the hot flashes and night sweats, while still not completely gone, are much better! Comment from: cherwright, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: April 16 I have experienced thyroid problems for five years now and it has certainly been hard battle with weight gain, fuzzy brain function, dry skin and lack of energy. What has helped is exercise in the form of walking every day. I am on medication, and I have yet to find a doctor who really shows an interest in this condition in my city...All my best wishes to thyroid sufferers out there, keep exercising, grill all foods and avoid sugar. Comment from: hopingtogetbettersoo, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: April 15 Last August I started feeling tired/fatigued and I had some bowel problems. Then one night, I started to have sharp pain and tightness in my lower right abdomen. I went to the emergency room afraid I had appendicitis. It turned out I didn't, but I had fluid in my pelvis, but no STDs or lady problems. They sent me home, but I started having a lot of hip pain on both sides, and then a couple weeks later, I started with wrist pain, like tendonitis. I was diagnosed with tendonitis and bursitis in the hips and tendonitis in the wrists, given some anti-inflammatory medications. I was told to rest and it would go away. It didn't and it only got worse. I could barely walk because of my hip problems and had pain in my knees and back as well, and hands and feet, and shooting pain and muscle twitching all the time. I also had chest and abdominal pain. I couldn't concentrate. I thought I had Lyme disease, but the test came back negative. Eventually they did a bone scan and saw inflammation in my hips, knees, shoulders, ankles and feet and diagnosed me with reactive arthritis (since the rheumatoid arthritis and lupus blood tests were normal and there is no blood test for reactive arthritis). But there were so many things that didn't make sense - I didn't have morning stiffness; I got tested and it turns out I have hypothyroidism. I can't walk more than five minutes right now because my knees are so bad. I just started taking the pills two days ago, and I am really hoping and praying that this is the answer to my problems. Comment from: jerik721, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 13 I will be 40 in two weeks. For hypothyroidism, I had symptoms of weight gain, fuzzy thinking, severe fatigue and depression. My hair became very coarse. I also had muscle weakness, weight gain, and bloating. I went to my doctor and was given antidepressants, which made everything worse. I put on another 50 pounds in seven months. I did some research and I started to think there may be something going on with my thyroid. I went to a different doctor and I found out that my levels were in the very low “normal” range. Due to my symptoms, he put me on Synthroid right away. I have only been on it for two weeks and I feel like a totally new person. The weight is falling off. Thank goodness for a doctor who looks and listens to his patient. Comment from: tt9, 45-54 (Patient) Published: April 09 I have had my thyroid doses switched at least 8 times a year with extreme fatigue. My thyroid is too high on one test and they put me on medicine to lower it, then with the medicine prescribed it's too low, so they put me on another dose. I have been going through this for almost 3 years, but they claim there's no reason to remove it. I am tired of being fatigue. From the very moment I wake I am exhausted, until the time I go to bed. Surely there is something they can do. Comment from: Robbo, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: April 02 Thank you so much for your comments. I have only just received results that I have 'sub-clinical hypothyroidism' after badgering my dismissive GP to take blood. He tried to tell me my exhaustion was all in my mind, due to depression, etc...I told him I know the difference between normal tiredness and the tiredness I have been feeling. My GP says he can't give me medication until my thyroid carks it. I told him I need something because I'm studying full-time next semester and I don't know how I will find the energy (and motivation, etc.). Comment from: patient 37, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 22 I am a 37 year old female and have been diagnosed with hypothyroidism. I am supposed to take the medication at 50mg, but due to the fact that I don't have insurance, I can't get my medication anymore, so I have been off it for about four months. I started gaining weight around the time I started taking the medication and that upset me. Yet now that I have been not taking it, I still can't get my weight down. I don't know what to do and I am frustrated with this condition. Comment from: Karen, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 08 I woke up one morning and the front of my neck was quite swollen. I looked like a bull frog. My doctor tested my blood and discovered hypothyroidism. She prescribed a thyroid medication and I was fine for a couple of years until another routine blood test indicated that my thyroid medication needed adjusting. Again, I was fine for several years. However, after a recent yearly physical, my doctor said that I now have hyperthyroidism. I still have to take the thyroid medication, but in a lower dose. The "moral" of this story is that if one has thyroid problems, blood tests need to be done several times per year. Comment from: shady, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 19 I went to the specialist and he has diagnosed me with hypothyroidism, as well as having nodules which are causing interference with my pituitary gland and my thyroid. To make a long story short, I have been waiting for surgery to have the nodule removed, and have been bumped now three times plus. I am getting totally frustrated, and feel terrible. I just want my body back. I am going to see the specialist again tomorrow, and he is going to reassess me. Comment from: patro, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: January 04 My doctor lowered the dose of a medication I had been on for 20 years and I started to feel awful. In the evening, my heart would pound like a drum, I couldn't sleep, I began to gain weight and lose energy. I had strange episodes of feeling like my body was shutting down. My doctor wouldn't listen and kept my dose at 125mg. I found another doctor who listened to me and raised it back to 150mg, and I feel good and normal again. Comment from: 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: December 29 I was diagnosed with Hypothryoidism right after the birth of my son - 15 years ago. I did not experience the weight gain, but I was extremely tired, my skin became very dry and I had noticed my face seemed puffy. My hands would also fall asleep if I sat in one position for very long. I saw an internist who ran blood work and diagnosed me with low thyroid. I was put on medication and have been taking it now for over 15 years. I've been on the same dose most of that time, until about two years ago when my hormone levels became erratic. Since then my dose has been increased and decreased several times. My doctor checks my hormone levels every 3 months now and is trying to regulate my levels, but it's been difficult. I was also diagnosed with depression one year ago, but I feel I was depressed for at least a year before that. I don't know if this is related to my hypothyroidism, but I'm on a higher dose of my medication, and I am feeling better overall. Comment from: Wanda, 35-44 Female (Caregiver) Published: November 25 my first symptom before diagnosis was depression, then quickly followed with weight gain, lethargy, loss in appetite, constipation, decreased respirations, and increase in blood pressure, and finally fibromyalgia. I had more extensive testing and found out I had Hashimoto's hypothyroidism. I was soooo happy to find this out as I was becoming a hypochondriac in my family's eyes! Medication and monitoring and POW ... I felt 16 again instead of 35! Comment from: Carolanne, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 14 I've had hypothyroidism since birth and I take 175mg of levothyroxine daily. I've got most of the symptoms that are listed. I get my blood tested every six months or so it always comes back fine! But I'm always tired. I've got horse hair its now getting thinner! I can't concentrate on anything as I just can't be bothered. I've got dry skin and I get palpitations. My weight yo-yos up and down from a size 8 to a size 14. I've got a terrible memory, but then again, I do have weeks on end when I feel like a normal person. Comment from: Lynn, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 29 Fatigue, muscle weakness, muscle aches, racing heart beat, shortness of breath, dry skin, hair loss, puffy face/eyes, heavy and painful periods with ovarian cysts, unexplained weight gain, difficulty losing weight, nausea, high cholesterol, dizziness/ faintness, excessive thirst, frequent urination, sometimes headaches, etc. Comment from: Sleepy head, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: December 09 I was very tired during the day, irritable, unable to concentrate. My hair at the front became thinner. My Hypothyroidism led on to sleep apnoea. I was made to feel better by thyroxine tablets, but not altogether and was referred to a sleep clinic. I have an air pressure machine to sleep with, and thyroxine and I feel fabulous now! I have my life back. Comment from: Chwaer ei chwaer, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: November 06 My Doctor put me on Levothyroxine 75mg (daily) in May of this year after telling me I had Hypothyroidism. Three weeks later I thought I was dying, rapid pulse, elevated B/P and chest pains etc. My dose was reduced to 25 micrograms a day, for the last 4 weeks I have been feeling really bad again, elevated B/P and fast pulse, loud heartbeats in my head. It is a horrible way to feel, I returned to my doctor yesterday and she wants me to return in a month for a blood tests to check my TSH levels again. I feel so poorly that I have thrown my tablets in the bin. For the last 2 weeks I had been taking my tablet on alternate days to see if it helped, but I didn't tell the doctor that I am a 45 years old female with a young son, I hate being like this and don't know what to do.