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Silent thyroiditis

  • Alternative Names

    Lymphocytic thyroiditis; Subacute lymphocytic thyroiditis; Painless thyroiditis; Thyroiditis - silent


    The earliest symptoms result from an overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism). These symptoms may last for 3 months or fewer. Later symptoms may be of an underactive thyroid (including fatigue and cold intolerance) until the thyroid recovers.

    Symptoms are usually mild and may include:

    • Fatigue
    • Frequent bowel movements
    • Heat intolerance
    • Increased appetite
    • Increased sweating
    • Irregular menstrual periods
    • Irritability
    • Muscle cramps
    • Nervousness, restlessness
    • Palpitations
    • Weakness
    • Weight loss

    Signs and tests

    A physical examination may show:

    • Enlarged thyroid gland
    • Rapid heart rate
    • Shaking hands

    Tests may show:

    • Decreased radioactive iodine uptake
    • Increased blood levels of the thyroid hormones T3 and T4
    • White blood cells (lymphocytes) on a thyroid biopsy