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myxedema(mik-sĕ-dē′mă ) [ myx- + edema]
The hypothyroid patient often complains of sluggishness, intolerance of cold, apathy, fatigue, and constipation. Findings may include infiltration of the subcutaneous layers of the skin by mucopolysaccharides. The hair may become dry and brittle. If the syndrome is left untreated, hypothermia, coma, and death may result.
Thyroid hormone replacement reverses the symptoms and reestablishes normal metabolic function.