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Depression

Dysthymia and Thyroid Problems

02/07/2008

Question:

If a person has dysthymia, what are the chances that there is an undiagnosed thyroid issue? One of the drugs being used to treat this disorder is thyroxine. Thyroid levels have been unchecked, but weight gain (and inability to lose it), dry skin, mood problems and constipation have been observed.

Answer:

In the absence of a thyroid function tests and in the presence of the symptoms you mention, the chances of hypothyroidism are substantial. It is certainly worth obtaining a TSH to assess the possibility because the treatment will be different if the TSH is high.

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Response by:

Lawson  Wulsin, MD Lawson Wulsin, MD
Professor of Psychiatry and Family Medicine, Training Director of the Family Medicine Psychiatry Residency Program
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati