What is MYXEDEMA?
Myxedema is used to describe a dermatological change that can occur in hypothyroidism, and some forms of hyperthyroidism. It is known to occur in various forms of hypothyroidism, and also in Graves’ disease. It is more common in women than in men.
Myxedema describes a specific form of cutaneous and dermal edema secondary to increased deposition of connective tissue components. These include: glycosaminoglycans, hyahironic acid and other mucopolysaccharides.
Myxedema coma: a loss of brain functions as a result of severe, longstanding low level of thyroid hormone in the blood. Considered a life threatening complication of hypothyroidism and represents the far more serious side of the spectrum of thyroid disease.
It is a condition marked by thickening and swelling of the skin caused by the thyroid gland. The function of the thyroid hormones is to regulate your metabolism.
Symptoms associated with underactive thyroid/hypothyroidism are:
- Weight gain
- Cold sensitivity
Hypothyroidism is common on women over 50 years. It can be caused by a viral infection, certain medications, radiation exposure, and autoimmune disease, inherited or congenital disorders. Myxedema occurs more frequently when hypothyroidism is left untreated.
Treatment is done using Thyroid replacement hormones. These medications are effective in eliminating the symptoms that accompany Myxedema and hypothyroidism. One should seek medical attention if they have:
- Very low body temperature
- Difficulty in breathing
- Low blood sugar
- Difficulty thinking clearly