Get your Health question answered in 3 easy steps

198 Doctors Online
Doctor Image
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 18 years

I will be looking into your question and guiding you through the process. Please write your question below.

What causes sudden weight loss?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Michelle Gibson James

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 15469 Questions

default
Posted on Wed, 13 Aug 2014 in Elderly Problems
Question: Ive noticed lately that Ive been losing weight. Im 69 and when im gardening I do sweat alot. Ive never lost this much weight like this year. Im getting nervous and hope it is not serious. I have an appointment with my Doctor on 08/18/14. I could use some advise on what to do now.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
need tests to determine cause of weight loss

Detailed Answer:
Hi, thanks for using healthcare magic

Unintentional weight can be a concern. Normally when a person notices that they are not intentionally losing weight, the more serious conditions have to be ruled out first.

In quite a few persons, the weight loss may not be due to a serious condition such as cancer but this has to be ruled out first.
To rule this out, the doctor would first need to take a history of any relevant symptoms such as loss of appetite, pain such as abdominal pain, vomiting, change in stool habits, blood in stool or urine, recent screening tests such as colonoscopy, PSA.

In addition, if the weight loss is confirmed by examination, blood tests and imaging may be needed. The exact tests would vary according to the signs found on examination but would include complete blood count and ESR (this is a test which checks for inflammation in the body)

Weight loss and heat intolerance (which may involve excess sweating) may also sometimes be due to high levels of thyroid hormone so your doctor may also suggest a thyroid hormone test.

The other causes of excess sweating are normally related to abnormalities of the sympathetic nervous system which is part of the nervous system of the body.

Summary: (1) may not be due to serious condition but need to be ruled out
(2)may be due to thyroid gland problems
(3)other serious conditions such as cancer would have to be ruled out by blood tests and examination
(4)at the moment there is no particular home management except using high calorie drinks such as ensure till you can determine the cause of the weight loss.

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
premium_optimized

The User accepted the expert's answer

Share on
Question is related to
Diseases and Conditions ,  
Medical Procedures
Lab Tests
Medical Topics ,  

Recent questions on Abdominal pain

doctor1 MD

I just finished eating and my stomach started cramping real bad.I had a little gas, and a loose bowel movement, and then It was like acid or bile coming out. I have been having pain in my right side under my ribs and in my right back. Very painful. I am 61 years old , weight is 188,Height is 5ft.6in. I do have irritable bowel but it hasn't been bothering me a lot lately.

doctor1 MD

sir, the son of my friend was feeling backpain,and knee joint pain and also abdominal pain for last six months.now after making usg the local doctor could not find his left kidney,he was moved to a hospital. there . after scanning the doctor says that his left kidney has dried and non functioning.but no report yet to receive.now the patient feeling pain as earlier with fever.the doctor suspect there may be a stone in dried kidney and it is to be examined. please advise me what to do now because my friend is very much worried thinking the future of his son

doctor1 MD

My daughter is a crohn's sufferer, diagnosed 12 months ago. She is on immunosuppressants and suffers repeat bladder infections. The crohn's itself is under control (we think) but today she is in pain again with an urgent need to pass water and there has been blood in her urine which has been absent with previous infections. She has mentioned her illness to doctors when getting treatment for "water infections" and they have been fairly dismissive of a link to crohns. The problem is we do not know what to expect if a flare-up occurs. Could this latest symptom (blood in her urine) be a symptom of flare-up or should we stop being concerned and assume it is another water/bladder infection? I would like her to go to A&E and get it checked but don't want to touble doctors unnecessarily.

doctor1 MD

I have had 3 c sections and since my last one 2 years ago I have had general discomfort in my lower mostly left abdomen. Lately I have had frequent urgent uncomfortable urination, with negative urine culture. Had renal ultrasound today that looked fairly normal I think. Wonder about scar tissue? Also I have ulcerative colitis but haven't had a serious flair in about 2 years.

doctor1 MD

My husband got very nauseated and extremely sweaty while urinating. He also got shaky. This happened once before about 5 years ago. What could cause this?

doctor1 MD

I'm having slight bleeding when I urinate and also light vaginal bleeding . I am also having slight abdominal pain . I had cervical cancer and had to have a complete hysterectomy 36 years ago in which they removed my uterus, 1 ovary and cervix. ....

doctor1 MD

Hi doctor so my partner and i had a baby 8 and a half months ago we were using condoms as protection. I have underacfive thyroid . We decided last month or so to leave contraception and have our second child. My periods past two months have been...