by EBSCO Medical Review Board

Problems vary from person to person. It depends on the level of hormone change. Hypothyroidism happens slowly over a number of years. A person may not notice they are having problems at first. They may also think the problems are caused by something else, such as stress.

People may have one or more of these symptoms:

  • Lack of energy and strength
  • Coarse, brittle hair, or hair loss
  • Facial puffiness
  • Dry skin
  • Swollen hands or feet
  • Being very cold
  • Weight gain
  • Problems passing stool
  • An achy feeling all over
  • Irritability
  • Memory loss
  • Problems with focus
  • Blurred vision
  • Menstrual problems or problems getting pregnant
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Severe problems may be:

  • Shortness of breath during activity or when lying flat
  • Low body temperature —Hypothermia
  • Slowed heartbeat


Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid). National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases website. Available at: Accessed May 4, 2022.

Hypothyroidism in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Accessed May 4, 2022.

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