Pain in your wrist? Get your neck checked
Photo caption: Butterfly-shaped thyroid gland is situated beneath the Adam's apple
(NC) That pain and numbness in your wrist and perhaps your arm may be connected to your neck. The cause may be your thyroid gland, located just below your Adam's apple.
Often diagnosed as repetitive strain injury (RSI) or carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), this inflammatory disorder in the wrist may be caused by repetitive activities, physical injury or a medical condition such as hypothyroidism. In fact, hypothyroidism is commonly considered as an important risk factor for CTS.
Hypothyroidism (under-active thyroid) develops when the thyroid gland is under-active and fails to produce sufficient hormones that regulate the growth, maturation and speed of metabolism. These hormones stimulate almost every tissue in the body to produce proteins and increase the amount of oxygen that cells use.
Hypothyroidism slows the metabolism. This may lead to weight gain, fatigue,
constipation, depression, increased sensitivity to cold, and/or dry skin and hair.
Untreated hypothyroidism may lead to complications such as heart disease, clinical depression, increased cholesterol levels and enlarged thyroid that may affect swallowing. In pregnant women, an untreated thyroid disorder may increase the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, learning disabilities and other developmental problems in children.
To find out if your wrist pain and numbness may be linked to hypothyroidism, ask your doctor for a TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) test. This simple blood test is considered the most accurate for diagnosing hypothyroidism, which usually is easily treated with thyroid hormone replacement therapy.
For more information on thyroid disorder, visit www.thyroidsymptoms.ca
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