What are the symptoms of myxedema coma?
When a patient presents with myxedema coma the following may be present:
- the body temperature is usually abnormally low (hypothermia), the core temperature may be as low as 80 F (26.6 C);
- severe mental changes including hallucinations, disorientation, seizures, and ultimately, deep coma;
- significant swelling (edema) all over the body with swollen eyes and thickening of the tongue,
- sparse, dry hair, and loss of the outer thirds of the eyebrows;
- difficulty breathing;
- collections of fluid around the lungs and heart (pleural effusion and pericardial effusions);
- the heart may slow down and its ability to pump blood forward can be impaired;
- the gastrointestinal tract does not function well and sometimes it becomes paralyzed, thereby necessitating surgery; and
- blood test abnormalities are a result of the increased fluid in the body. For example, sodium levels drop because of dilution, which is caused by the body retaining extra water.