Thyroid UK

Rhinitis and Hypothyroidism

While I was trying to find some information about rhinitis and hypothyroisim (having suffered lot myself ever since my TT) I came across this extract from a Turkish study:

The following conclusion was drawn:

Besides other examinations, thyroid functions should also be assessed in patients presenting with rhinitis symptoms.

I was struggling to find anything specific on TUK . There is information on 'Breathing problems' in general, primarily decreased Lung Function, but not about the constant nasal obstruction of Perennial Rhinitis.

I have suffered from this for years, so I found this very interesting. I have had to have two operations to remove polyps from my nose, which the surgeon assured me were the result of the constant nasal obstruction.

30 Replies

Wish I'd known that many, many years ago - when I was in my teens, in fact. I've suffered with rhinitis ever since and none of the so-called specialists I've seen appear to have known anything about it. Pfft!


Thank you for this. The exact info I need for ENT tomorrow. He does not believe my sinus lump and 4 year headache is connected to my TT


Lily905 hope you get the excellent treatment I did from an ENT specialist. He was very curt thorough and considerate.

He was the second Dr to feel my neck, in twelve years...said my thyroid was bulky and ordered a scan.

It helped prove what I had been saying for years.

He offered another type of scan for my head and ears (cant recall the exact name)but as I am claustrophobic I declined.

My ear/ throat problems had previously been ignored. Since taking thyroxine and antibiotic ear drops the tinnitus/repeated sinus infections have gone and hearing improved. This was over a year ago. The runny nose has stayed though.

All the best for tomorrow. wyn


You might find useful some of the extra abstracts in this document:



Some things there good to know rod.

Now no need to put myself through the humiliation of a Dr telling most old people have a runny nose especially when they begin to eat!

And so glad I am beyond rat... I mean child bearing age. We complain about rats but we do owe them some gratitude for all these studies.



Thanks, Rod! Was that on TUK?


No. Done "to order"! :-)

1) Go to PubMed,

2) Sign up to "My NCBI" (I think this is needed - but not sure) - or sign in if you have already signed up.

3) Type "rhinitis hypothyroid" into the search box.

4) Click on the left on "Abstract available".

5) Click toward the top on "Display settings" and choose "Abstract".

6) Click toward the top on "Send To" and fill in the email address you want it sent to.

7) When it arrives, save it as a PDF on your computer (how you do that depends on your system - I have Cute PDF installed, but could have copied it all into a Word document and saved that as PDF).

8) Put it into somewhere you can share it like Dropbox.

9) Get a link to the document and post that!

Sounds a lot, but most of that is actually trivial. Just a couple of bits needs more thought.

Entirely because you posted such a useful and obviously interesting link - I thought that there might be something else available.



Marram states: "There is information on 'Breathing problems' in general, primarily decreased Lung Function, but not about the constant nasal obstruction of Perennial Rhinitis." Please can you direct me to any literature re hypothyroidism and breathing problems. I would be most interested as I've encountered breathing difficulties and I thought there might be a thyroid connection. For a long time I thought it was probably due to my bad posture, so have enrolled in a pilates class... I've been on thyroxine (50 mcg) for 7 years. My TSH is 3.2. It was higher when I had lots of problems breathing, felt as if my lungs weren't doing their job properly, was gasping to the point of hyperventilating. Also, some time ago on this website I saw a reference to a study which suggested that TSH over 2.4 (or thereabouts) was a heart risk. Please can you tell me which medical or scientific journal this article comes from, as I would like to show my GP.

I get a lot of interesting info from this website. Thanks to you all.



Thanks Rod. The article by Schlenker EH."Effects of hypothyroidism on the respiratory system and control of breathing: Human studies and animal models"

looks interesting. Not sure whether its downloadable. I'll try it.

Respir Physiol Neurobiol. 2012 Apr 30;181(2):123-31. doi: 10.1016/j.resp.2012.02.007. Epub 2012 Feb 28. Review.'


39.95 dollars is what I see.-(


i certainly can't afford that, so I'll just have to imagine what the scholarly medical journal article says about hashimoto's hypothyroidism and breathing difficulties. ):

I'm still looking for the source article that explains the risk of heart failure associated with TSH over 2.5 (or something).

thanks Rod


I didn't notice it with this one, but some journals have a patient access system. You follow their instructions and they send you a copy for free. Worth emailing them anyway - worst they can do is say "no".


thanks, will do.



Good find Marram, seems just as I wonder about something...someone on here comes up with a study.

Have met many women and one man with under active thyroid who have nasal and sinus problems and many who have had polyps removed. Two in my family.

I just assumed it is one of the many conditions that comes with thyroid disease but have not heard of any Medical acknowledgement until now.

For the life of me I can't remember the name of the operation on the ligament of the hands. It was so common to have this procedure and all of the people I met who had it done were taking levothyroxine for hypothyroidism.



For the life of me I can't remember the name of the operation on the ligament of the hands.

Do you mean Carpal tunnel release surgery?


Yes thats the one . Ta



Thank You. I had the claustrophobic scan a year ago. He refuses to accept any results & my sinus history for 4 years from other doctors & hospitals. He is lying in his letters to my GP saying he has examined me when he has not moved from behind his desk. My GP refered me to a Pain Psychologist about this & I am well prepared with my history all typed up to give to him. Also suggestions & questions about what I think should be done next & I am going to say his letters contradict my px, history & the examinations said he did.

He is very highly strung & I expect him to raise his voice etc. I feel confident with talking through all the problems I have had with him with the pain psychologist that I can remain calm & not let him make me upset or appear scared. I just want him to refer me to the ENT at the hospital where I had my TT & for him to know he cannot get away with lying & rewriting my history. He must think people are stupid to try & get away with this.

Sorry about the rant. Hospital Specialists who do not know or do their speciality drive me round the bend. "I wont get fooled again".


It makes one's blood boil when so-called professionals actually stoop to dishonesty and bullying. No entirely relevant but my husband has extremely sever psoriasis and when me relocated he had to stop seeing the excellent dermatology professor in St Thomas' in London and go to the local dermatology dept. What a horrible experience!

The consultant was overbearing, rude, completely incapable of listening to the patient, and told a pack of lies about the medication my husband had been taking to control his condition. It seemed she wanted him to stop the medication so he would have a flare-up, just so she could see how bad it could get!

You just rant away. That's what TUK is for, among other things.

'Won't get fooled again'. Cue for a song.

We'll all join in.



what is the medication?


HYdroxyurea (or hydroxycarbamide) - She kept telling him to reduce it because he could only take it up to a certain point as the effects are cumulative, and one he reached that limit, he would never be able to take it again. It is absolute nonsense, if he starts to show signs of toxic effects in his blood, he can stop taking it for a week or two and his blood recovers completely.

What she was telling him was true of Methotrexate, which he took many years ago, and once he reached his tolerance limit it had to be discontinued for good.


Hydroxycarbamide is often used permanently by haematologists for blood disorders. Like you say, the effects do not appear to be cumulative. This should apply when it is used in dermatology too.

Methotrexate is also used long-term, and has been studied more extensively in psoriasis than hydroxycarbamide. Some patients develop liver damage, usually several years into treatment, but most do not and can safely continue. A liver biopsy is often performed 2-3 years after the start of treatment. It sounds as though your husband was unlucky with methotrexate :(


Yes, he had several liver biopsies during the course of his time on Methotrexate. It controlled his psoriasis and his Psoriatic arthropathy very well, but then he started getting liver damage so they discontinued it. Cyclosporine made his blood pressure soar, but hydroxycarbamide has been reasonably effective. I plan to ask the dermatologist about LDN next time we see him.



Low dose naltrexone? Low dose naltrexone is not used in conventional medicine. I think it's quite unlikely that the dermatologist will have heard of it. I'm not saying it doesn't work (I have no idea), just that it is exclusively prescribed by a small number of unconventional physicians.

>Cyclosporine made his blood pressure soar

That's common, unfortunately.

>hydroxycarbamide has been reasonably effective

It sounds like hydroxycarbamide has worked rather well but...

Ustekinumab (Stelara) is the latest treatment for severe psoriasis. It appears to be one of the most effective treatments yet, but is only used after conventional treatments have failed (it costs about £10 000 per year for one patient). Stelara is given by injection, the first injection is repeated after one month, and then it is given once every three months.

Etanercept (Enbrel) and adalimumab (Humira) are also useful in severe psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. As with Stelara, standard meds and phototherapy (usually PUVA) are tried first.

Take care,



He has had Psoriasis for over 40 years and also has deformed fingers and toes plus lower spine is fused by calcification, he has had several rounds of PUVA with almost no results. Topical treatments include liquid Coal Tar, Betnovate and Coal Tar, Betnovate RD 4-in-1, Dovonex, Dovobet, all these have been used alone or in combination with oral medications. Every form of topical treatment has been used and several kinds of oral medications including Tigason, one which he calls 'resoxane' but probably is called something different (his Spanish accent!) methotrexate, Cyclosporin, and Hydroxycarbamide.

There were probably a few trials in between before we met which I don't know about. All biologicals have been ruled out because there is evidence of TB contact (could be from years ago when he worked in a mental hospital. Some patients did have TB although he never actually came in contact officially, and has never been unwell from it). As you can see, he has been there, done that, got the T-shirt! I worry more about him than I do myself! It can be hard work because we can never truly relax, every single day his skin treatment must be done or he suffers. I find that the PAPAA website is not nearly as supportive or useful as this one. Sorry, rant over!

I know it really belongs somewhere else, but it shows why I have to be in good health. I can't afford to neglect him, or he ends up in hospital dehydrated and on a saline drip. It has happened and probably will again, but I an certainly going to do my best to prevent it!



Probably razoxane.

>All biologicals have been ruled out because there is evidence of TB contact.

Before a biologic is initiated, all patients need to be evaluated for the possibility of latent tuberculosis. A chest X-ray and tuberculin skin test are needed. If latent tuberculosis seems likely, a specialist infectious diseases physician should be consulted for advice. Isoniazid 300mg per day is the most common preventive treatment when biologics are used in patients who may have latent tuberculosis. The benefits and risks do need to be carefully weighed up, but biologics are not entirely ruled out in this situation.


Did you see this?

Sorry it was not until I replied that realised you had seen this person before! Hopefully he is off on a jolly and you get a more listening thinking outside of the training manual person.

:-) wyn


Hmm - I think we may know this Mary person ..... and she's a right troublemaker and witters (creatively) on a lot! J :D xx


Got it. She's in awe. Half as much DO would do me. wyn


Thank you so much for this info. I have suffered all my 60yrs with this. and still do. In fact have yet again been off work with an infection.


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