Skin problems associated with thyroid disease - Thyroid UK

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Skin problems associated with thyroid disease

I noticed my skin was getting very dry, rubbing my shins the floor looked like an advert for dandruff shampoo. Looking around the net for reasons/solutions I came across this site.

Thought it was very informative for anyone interested.

An underactive thyroid may result in:

Cold, pale and dry skin

Delayed wound healing

A yellowish hue to the skin due to carotenaemia

Sparse, brittle hair which comes out in handfuls

Slow growing ridged and brittle nails

Myxoedema resulting in puffy eyelids and hands – another presentation of mucinosis.

Thyrotoxicosis results in an increase in metabolic rate. This may result in:

Smooth, moist, warm skin

Flushing of face and hands

Overgrown nails (acropachy, clubbing), which may lift off the nail bed (onycholysis)

Fine soft thinned scalp hair

Generalised itching (pruritus)


Increased skin pigmentation

Graves disease can be associated with other autoimmune conditions, including vitiligo.

Pretibial myxoedema

Pretibial myxoedema or thyroid dermopathy affects 5% of patients with Graves disease. It may appear before, during or after the thyrotoxic state and is sometimes associated with an underactive thyroid. Pretibial myxoedema presents with a swollen and lumpy appearance over the shins and sometimes also affects the feet. The skin may be discoloured pink or purple, with prominent hair follicles. This is known as ‘peau d'orange’ (orange-peel) appearance. It may instead look warty or ‘verrucous’.

2 Replies

Flatfeet, it can take months after being optimally medicated for the dry flaking skin to improve. Skin may be one of the last symptoms to respond. I've seen a lot of posters recommend pure coconut oil for dryness.


Thanks Clutter that's good to know, will mention at my endo appointment.


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