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Can hypothyroidism cause weight gain and hairfall ?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 40 Questions
I have had excessive weight gain and hair thinning within the last 6 months. I have gone on mulitple diets and nothing is working. I am 17 years old and wondering if this is hypothyroidism
Posted Mon, 30 Apr 2012 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Jyoti Patil 1 hour later

Thanks for posting your query.

I understand your concern regarding the problem.

You have provided with good information but I would like to know a few more things as this would help me in suggesting you better.

1. May I know your gender, height and current weight?

2. How many kilograms/lbs have you put on during the last 6 months?

3. Do you have any other symptoms apart from the ones mentioned in your question?

4. Is your hair loss approximately more than 100 strands in a day?

Excessive weight gain and hair thinning are definitely among the symptoms of Hypothyroidism. But it is not sufficient enough to make the diagnosis of Hypothyroidism.

Majority of the symptoms of Hypothyroidism are related to metabolic slowing of body. Common complaints are fatigue, weight gain, dry skin, dry and coarse hair, depression, etc.

It is advisable to rule out hypothyroidism if you have any of the symptoms above.

Hypothyroidism can be easily diagnosed by performing blood tests. The blood levels of thyroid hormones can be measured directly and are usually decreased. However, in early Hypothyroidism, the level of thyroid hormones (T3- Tri-iodothyronine and T4- Thyroxine) may be normal. Therefore, the main tool for detection of Hypothyroidism is measurement of TSH ( Thyroid Stimulating Hormone).

Further treatment depends on results of the blood test.

Other possibilities could be:

1. A simple nutritional dietary deficiency of Vitamins and minerals can cause Hairloss.

2.Nutritional Anemia can be another reason for the hair loss

3. Sedentary lifestyle most commonly causes weight gain.

4. Other endocrine disorders like Diabetes Mellitus, gonadal hormone imbalances, Polycystic ovarian disease can also cause weight gain and also hair loss.

I would suggest you to get the following routine investigations done:

1. A complete hemogram with hemoglobin.

2. Thyroid profile.

You need a detailed clinical evaluation by a general physician, hence I would suggest you to consult one.

Awaiting Your response.


Dr. Jyoti Patil.
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