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Hypothyroid and reaction to the cold weather?

Hypothyroid and reaction to the cold weather?

I am sure that I have an issue with my immune system. I talked to my very unhelpful GP about this yesterday when we discussed my TSH of 5.9 and she said there was nothing wrong with me. I asked if I could have the antibody tests and she said no so I've decided to pay for them myself.

I have recently started to have bizarre reactions to the cold weather when I am outside for more than 5 minutes. It started with my face and hands being scorching hot, red and rashy. I am not sure the photos do it justice but those that have seen it in person seem alarmed and always point it out. My colleague said my hands looked like they'd been dipped in acid! Once I'm indoors it tend to go away after 15 minutes and I'll take an antihistamine to help.

I showed these pictures to my GP who said it is eczema. I am struggling to agree as I have never heard of eczema that only lasts 15 minutes and then disappears completly! I used to have eczema on my arms and it lasted ages.

Today I walked the 30 minutes home and my legs started to feel like they were on fire. I took my leggings off and they looked sunburnt and were swollen. I have taken an antihistamine and it's gone.

I am not sure this has anything to do with hypothyroidism but has anyone else experienced this? I googled it and it looks like there may be a link?... possibly to Hashimoto's? I am at the very early stages of considering I might have a thyroid problem and want to know if I might need to look into this further.

10 Replies

Hi Sleepyjen, it could well be another hypothyroid symptom. As others advised you yesterday, you definitely do seem to be hypothyroid, it's just you have a numpty doctor (sadly not unusual). Have a look at this old thread:

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Could it be cold urticaria (hives)

A couple of years before I was diagnosed hypo. I took the dog for a walk one very cold day and my legs started to feel very itchy. When I got home and took my jeans off I had quite bad urticaria (hives) on my legs. This settled and went away 1/2 hour later.

I got it again a fours years ago around the same time of year, but this time I was in doors. I had my thyroid levels checked and my TSH had gone quite high and my Vitamin D level was very low.

I have not had it again until a few weeks ago, this time I was outside again, legs very cold and itching and the urticaria again. I was due my thyroid test and when I got results TSH had gone up again. I am still waiting for Vitamin D result and it will be interesting to see if comes back low, if it does then my theory is that cold urticaria is possible connected to thyroid levels or Vitamin D levels.

I think someone on the forum last week said they had read urticaria can be associated with low Vitamin D levels. Have you had yours checked and are you on any thyroid meds,? A TSH of 5.9 is over range.


Lucylocks it does sound the same as what you had. I suggested to the GP that it could be a reaction to the cold (unfortunately didn't know the term cold urticaria before I went in) and she rubbished the idea.

The GP didn't agree that my TSH was anything to worry about. I've paid to do my own test and will make sure I do it first thing in the morning as the NHS one I had was at lunchtime. The test I've ordered will also check Vitamin D. I will post again when I have the results.

Thanks for your help.


Yes post your results and you will great advice from the members here.

Make sure you fast before doing the test and do it before 9.00am.

Good luck,


I get the same thing around my mouth after eating certain foods (that are possibly rich in histamine). Mine is very itchy and disappears after a couple of hours.


Hmm yes I think my body is certainly overreacting and I have a lot of food allergies and intolerances, just seemed so odd to react to being outside! I fear I will become a hermit!


Sounds like the immune system has gone screwy. I think it is all due to a lingering gut infection, my family all developed similar intolerances and we're not all the same age so it's unlikely to be hereditary intolerances.

I am now just wondering if antibiotics will improve it or make it worse.


I am researching the autoimmune paleo diet and think I need to give it a try. I've been gluten free for 2 years, eat low dairy (trying to cut out completly) and I still have bizarre reactions almost every time we eat out. I spoke to my doctor about my immune system but she didn't agree I have an issue.

Nobody else in my family has these reactions so I am just trying to work out what's going on!


Make sure it's not histamine foods you're eating/drinking. Fermented stuff like beer, blue cheese and pickled vegetables seem to be the worst.

I've had my immune system evaluated and it was low in places but not out of range. It's an expensive test so I can't recommend it.

The paleo diet will be a last resort for me, I am very motivated to find a cure and get on with my life.


Not good at advising but your TSH is very high. Whats up with your doc saying its ok!!!

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