Question

Thyroid Disorders

How do thyroid disorder symptoms mimic schizophrenia?

A Answers (1)

  • ADonna Hill Howes, RN, Family Medicine, answered
    Thyroid disorder is a medical condition that can cause symptoms similar to those found in people with schizophrenia. When people show up at the doctor displaying some of the signs of schizophrenia, a physician will perform laboratory tests to rule out medical illnesses that mimic schizophrenia. One of the diseases they check for is thyroid disorder. When a person's thyroid is underactive or overactive, they may display some symptoms that are similar to those found in people with schizophrenia. With hyperthyroidism people may experience:
    • tremors or shaking
    • nervousness or anxiety
    • trouble sleeping
    • confusion
    • withdrawal from others
    Symptoms of hypothyroidism can include:
    • dull facial expression or lack of emotions
    • speaking slowly 
    • confusion
    • memory loss
    For these reasons, people with the above symptoms are tested for thyroid disorder before schizophrenia can be diagnosed.
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