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Myxedema Coma

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What is myxedema coma?

Myxedema coma is a loss of brain function as a result of severe, longstanding low level of thyroid hormone in the blood (hypothyroidism). Myxedema coma is considered a life-threatening complication of hypothyroidism and represents the far more serious side of the spectrum of thyroid disease.

Who is affected by myxedema coma?

Myxedema coma is not common, but tends to be seen more frequently in elderly patients and in women. There is an increased incidence in the winter months, which is likely secondary to the extremes in temperature. Myxedema coma can actually result in death. Fortunately, the condition is rare.

What are the symptoms of hypothyroidism?

Before a patient develops myxedema coma, features of hypothyroidism are usually present and may have gone unsuspected for a long period of time.

These symptoms include:

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/12/2013

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Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/myxedema_coma/article.htm

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