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Author Topic: FAQ: BPD and thyroid disorders?  (Read 6422 times)
crazyhorse
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« on: February 17, 2007, 06:24:55 PM »

I am curious about this possible connection between BPD and thyroid problems. Thyroid problems run in by BP stbxw's family. My wife has told me that she has a thyroid problem too but she is not currently on thyroid medication because she has been tested and it is now just within normal range.

She has been on Effexor for at least the two years that I have known her. She told me that the Effexor was for her thyroid condition. I never really believed this because Effexor is more commonly prescribed for depression. I suppose if there is a link between thyroid problems and BPD, her taking the Effexor could indirectly be connected to her thyroid condition.

Still, my wife refuses to take any responsibility for her behavior or our marital problems. If only her mind was open to some of this maybe we would not be getting divorced. We have been separated now for a month. I am afraid it is too late.  

« Last Edit: November 13, 2018, 06:48:02 PM by Skip » Logged


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stpmom
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« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2007, 07:34:51 PM »

Some of what I have read on thyroid talks about carefull monitoring the thyroid when taking certain medications.  Try doing a serch on thyroid and Effexor maybe that answer your questions.
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eve7
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2007, 07:39:37 PM »

I have never heard of an anti-depressant used to treat hypothyroidism. Now, understand, I'm not saying that it's not possible or that it doesn't happen. Most thyroid drugs in the market are T3s, T4s, and T3/T4 combos (which I take). As a patient, I question "normal range" because different labs have different ranges that may or may not fit the needs of the patient. Plus, there's just so much information on the thyroid out there that most GPs and some endocrinologists just do not know.

Was your stbxwife pulled off her medication by a doctor or did she just stop taking it? If she was pulled off by a doctor, she might want to get a second opinion. So much affects the hormone production level of the thyroid such as diet, stress levels, activity, and the amount of sunlight. Also, there is a possible link between thyroid problems and bi-polar disorder. So, with that in mind, just think how much the thyroid can affect the brain when it comes to other disorders.
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insearchofpeace

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« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2008, 06:30:35 PM »

My ex BPDgf/lover was hypothyroid.  My T initially waved this off as  irrelevant to her behavior, but I did some digging and found  a few citations in the clinical literature showing evidence that this endocrine disorder in women (hypothyroidism is common in women) can overlap mental dysfunction in a number of cognitive domains. Im not saying that the results suggest hypo-T is a predictor of BPD specifically, but BPD is a complex pyschiatric disease and the neurochemistry isnt fully understood.

I mention this as something I found interesting and possible important when we consider the risk factors for BPD (at least in women).
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JoannaK
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« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2008, 07:09:27 PM »

It would be great if anyone with BPD had a full-fledged physical before they were psychologically evaluated.  But if the person is treated and is still hypothyroid, then the thyroid levels may be meaningless in terms of the BPD behavior.  Many, many, many people are low on thyroid hormones and they are not BPD. 

I have read something about this before, tomba.
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Abigail
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« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2008, 09:28:34 PM »

Our doctor has treated many individuals with BPD and he has found that a significant percentage have thyroid problems.  Another common problem is vitamin B12 deficiency.  My husband and daughter (who both have BPD) both take 1000 mg. of B12 as part of their treatment (their B12 levels were low).  I'm thinking that it might have been as many as one-third of those with BPD had thyroid problems as well, but I am not positive on that number.

My daugher had an overactive thyroid but my husband doesn't have any thyroid problems.  And as Joanna pointed out, many people have thyroid problems and are not BPD. 
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ozzy
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« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2008, 11:12:03 AM »

Quote from "Sometimes I Act Crazy"



"It is also conceivable, of course, that congenital malformation produces the development disconnection, producing a subtly handicapped child whose comprimised coping skills frustrate caregivers"

My four month old son was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. Some reading on the subject suggests heredity as a possible factor.

My udBPDw has a family history of mental illness, although diagnosis is not necessarily happening.

I am really starting to wonder if there is a link between thyroid function, thyroid stimulating hormone from the petuitary gland and BPD.

I know in congenital hypothyroidism brain function is the main concern and when untreated leads to what they used to call "cretinism"
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ozzy
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« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2008, 12:16:43 PM »

Just another note:

I have learned that screening for hypothyroidism in infants is a fairly new thing. Approx 30 years.

With that being a factor then is it not reasonable to assume that there are many people 30 years and older out there who may have been born with some level of hypothyroidism? And went untreated as a result? Perhaps minor underdevelopment of brain function?

My experiences all point to this as a possibility. But what do I know?
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Abigail
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« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2008, 01:53:14 PM »

Although I have not heard if there is an actual connection between the two, I do know that thyroid problems (whether hypo or hyper, I'm not sure) are fairly common in those that have BPD.  Our doctor has treated a lot of BPD patients and he has found that approximately one third of them have a thyroid problem as well.

Abigail
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ozzy
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« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2008, 02:16:25 PM »

Could the difference be that when it is "congenital hypothyroidism" there is an initial interruption in brain development. Something that happens in infancy. Hey 1 in 4000 infants. How does the math work out?

And consider the variances in the length of time before Thyrozine levels are stabalized.
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OneTrickPony
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« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2008, 06:57:15 PM »

My now exBPDgf had hypothyroidism. She was on Synthroid for it.

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Interposed
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« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2008, 11:44:01 PM »

I've read the medical journal articles, too, that link BPD to hypothyroid. It was curiosity on my part because my DH's BPDXW is hypothyroid, and he talked about how much worse it got after her thyroid lobe removal. (She was hyperthyroid before that, with unpleasant psych symptoms, but apparently not the big bundle of fun she turned into afterward.)

I've been really curious about this link, too. In my reading, I learned like some of you that it does not correlate 100%, which makes sense. My assumption before I ran into this post was that there are those who are predisposed for whatever reason, and those who are not. Since from my DH's account, the BPDXW had very unpleasant jealousy issues and a fairly short temper before her thyroid lobe was removed, I figured that she must be predisposed.

Though, who knows? I'm no expert. Perhaps hyperthyroid is a factor, too? Although I've never run into it in my reading, and in my case it's fairly pointless to go any further. It's not like she's looking for a cure.

But one last tip for my fellow travelers in curiosity - I was curious if any of the medical journal articles I read were freely available through google. While I didn't find that, if you throw in "borderline personality disorder" and "hypothryoid", there would appear to be a slew of info out there.
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GlennT
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« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2008, 11:02:43 AM »

Hiya Folks; My ex bp said they found a tumor on her pituitary gland. The Doc said it could have happened from any kind of trauma from her past, and that they grow slowly. Her condition was called Hypopituiarism. So, I typed that in along with mental diseases, and I found some journals dating back to 1885!
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Skip
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« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2010, 10:06:45 AM »

From what I've read some people have had there BPD symptoms almost vanish or at least scale back from getting there thyroid under control via medication. Wondering what other peoples thoughts are on this.

If someone  has an overactive or under-active thyroid, it affects their emotions.  Treating this will alleviate the thyroid related symptoms.

With an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism), one may experience:

   Unusual nervousness

   Restlessness

   Anxiety

   Irritability

On the opposite end of the spectrum, with have an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), one may experience:

   Mild to severe fatigue

   :)epression

Is there a relationship or is it dual diagnosis?  This suggests the later - or a lack of evidence to support the former.

Circulating thyroid autoantibodies are more prevalent in patients with mood disorders than in the general population, but longitudinal clinical data that establish a relationship between thyroid antibody status and the course of any psychiatric syndrome have been lacking. In addition, scant attention has been paid to thyroid hormones and autoimmunity in borderline personality disorder (BPD).

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12897379

Thyroid disease affects the moods of most, but it is ampified in people with mood conditions such as:

~atypical depression (which may present as dysthymia)

~bipolar spectrum syndrome (including manic-depression, mixed mania, bipolar depression, rapid-~cycling bipolar disorder, cyclothymia, and premenstrual syndromes)

~borderline personality disorder

~or psychotic disorder (typically paranoid psychosis).


www.currentpsychiatry.com/home/article/identifying-hypothyroidisms-psychiatric-presentations/190d5808f9bdd646cf3a8560587e35cc.html
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bpdfamfan
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« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2010, 10:15:40 AM »

An imbalanced thyroid can cause depression but I've never heard of BPD-like symptoms.  I've had thyroid problems for years & although I experienced weight gain & depression at times (I can tell when it is "low" I didn't experience BPD symptoms.  Hyperthyroid can cause some anxiety & palpitations (among other symptoms)

Either way (hyper or hypo)  thyroid problems can make a person miserable & they really need to be treated (by a doctor--not just iodine at the health food store 
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justisntright
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« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2010, 10:17:24 AM »

my uBPDw has an underperforming thyroid. She takes a dose some where between 60 and 120. I did see some mild changes in here moods but once she was back on track not feeling to tired and run down. It was something else to complain about. Some how she got her dr to perscribe her adderol. She says it gives her focus and more energy and it just so happens it has great weight loss associated with it. I think its been over two years on thyroid and one with the thy/addy cocktail. She is now extremely skinny to the point people make comments about it looking unhealthy. It also appears that the addy is causing a heart problem. She is so addicted that she knows if she complains to much about the heart problem she will be taken off the addy. We had a recent life insurance policy update. she had to do a battery of tests. One came back stateing she was malnourished...oh that felt like a venting...sorry.

hope that helps
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11yrs2long
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« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2010, 01:14:58 PM »

This is really interesting,

My BPDW had her thyroid removed (or 95% of it) in her early twenties. She takes thyroid medication.

I wonder if there is a link?
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worriedmom
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« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2010, 03:06:11 PM »

I have hypothyroidism. It has to be treated quite aggressively if my count goes over the mid range of normal all my symptoms start coming back and it aint pretty.  Smiling (click to insert in post) It's one of the big issues with hypothyroidism that each person needs to be treated not to the "numbers" but for the symptoms. My mother's count was always just in the high end of the scale so her doctor did not treat her until a medication she was on tipped her over the line. The change in her was remarkable, cognitively she improved dramatically. She was 77 and seeing her doctor for post stroke and dementia care. By being treated she got 7 yrs of better mental health. I wish she had gotten it earlier, would have made my life soo much easier. Too many GPs look at the numbers only and downplay the symptoms or put it off to depression or other problems. If this is happening to you the best thing to do is find an endocrinologist and interview them to find out if they believe in aggressively treating the symptoms not following the numbers, if not, move on.

Most lists of hypothyroid symptoms either lists cognitive problems as one item or just a few of the more common ones. However each person is different as to what area it affects. Wikipedia has a detailed list of research areas for cognitve ability under "cognitive psychology". It's enlightening to see how many areas of interest are symptoms we list for our pw/BPD. As to lists of thyroid symptoms do not just look at one, check out several and combine the lists. I have yet to find one list that has every symptom reported on it.

Having hypothyroidism can make you feel and act like you are mentally ill or in a deep depression. With my son's BPDgf before she was diagnosed she was explaining how she felt and I suggested she have her T3/T4 test. She was right on the edge of being hypo and her doctor treats her with a low daily dose. It seems to have eased a couple of symptoms but she has always been open to help and since the diagnosis she has been actively seeking assistance so don't know which helped.
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Jemima
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« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2010, 02:22:53 PM »

I suspect an aunt of having BPD (she is in her 80s) and she had a tumor on her thyroid about 20 years ago. I wouldn't be surprised if she had had thyroid problems long before that ... she had radiation treatments for acne back in the 40s, which I have heard can kill off the thyroid (or at least really damage it).
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« Reply #19 on: January 30, 2010, 08:09:38 AM »

Mine got evaluated too. As did her sister. Some treatment but overall inconclusive.

I suspect there is a linkage. But which way is the causal relationship? And is it causal or just coincident due to diagnostic traditions? Odd acting persons my be suspected of having something physical. And thyroid is difficult to diagnose. It is also linked to hormones and if a woman has emotional problems - hormones can be a cause. As can BPD...
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« Reply #20 on: January 30, 2010, 03:11:50 PM »

Yes and another thing to wonder about is which came first, the chicken or the egg (or if the chicken and the egg are causally related to each other at all, as you pointed out). Can being on a constant emotional rollercoaster cause chemical changes in the body? Although I'm not a biochemist or anything like that, I would say that the answer is definitively YES.

I think my mom is uPBD after reading Lawson's book "Understanding the Borderline Mother". My mother's swings are pretty covert ---- you have to be in a close relationship with her before you see them, and even then it is subtle --- but in a way the subtlety is worse because you walk away wondering why you feel so awful after being with her. Anyway, until menopause she was extremely thin and so constantly active and terribly anxious that if ANYTHING was wrong with her thyroid it would have had to be HYPERthyroidism rather than HYPOthyroidism.
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Randi Kreger
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« Reply #21 on: February 01, 2010, 09:18:25 PM »

I did a search and found this studies. I was surprised.www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12897379
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« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2010, 09:24:11 AM »

I read recently that people with Hypothyroidism have a high rate of depression and bipolor disorder compared to non-hypos. Since Borderline Personality Disorder is often mistaken for bipolar, I was wondering if there might be a connection, there, as well? And if so, what it might be?

I suspect my mother (A) is BP. I suspect her mother (B) was BP (though a different type--more of the waif from the "Borderline Mother" descriptions). I suspect "B's" mother (C) was BP, based on what I've been told.

I was recently diagnosed with hypothyroidism. In talking to my mom about it, I found out that not only did my mom have a goiter as a kid (which I knew), but her mom was on synthroid (synthetic thyroid hormone) for the last 10 years of her life, that all of "B's" sisters had thyroid issues, and that "C" had thyroid issues. It seems there may be a pattern.
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« Reply #23 on: May 19, 2010, 09:00:18 AM »

My diagnosed BPD wife has been asked many times in hospitals and such environments if she has ever had a thyroid test - because she has "big eyes".

She finally had one, and it turned out normal though.
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« Reply #24 on: July 25, 2010, 12:02:57 AM »

My BPDexh had bipolar ii, diabetes, and thyroid (hypo) from having a thyroid tumor removed.  Took synthroid. Seemingly all his levels were fine because he had regular blood work.  This seems to be a not uncommon pattern here.
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