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J R Soc Med. 1982 February; 75(2): 102–106.
PMCID: PMC1437265

Thyroid dysfunction and rheumatic diseases.


Musculoskeletal symptoms developing during the treatment of thyroid disease were studied in 150 patients; 17 developed a symptom complex of early morning stiffness together with shoulder girdle pain and weakness; similar symptoms were seen in only 3 of 100 controls. A prospective study of 16 patients with recent onset rheumatoid arthritis followed during the first 6 months of penicillamine therapy showed no changes in thyroid function tests. It is suggested that changing or abnormal thyroid status may precipitate or exacerbate musculoskeletal disease. Finally, in a retrospective study of 26 patients with both thyroid disease and rheumatoid arthritis, 4 patients had a simultaneous onset of both myxoedema and rheumatoid arthritis, the activity of which was greatly improved by correction of the hypothyroid state.

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Selected References

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