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Is it normal my skin is changing?

Beside pale, cold, scaly, wrinkled skin and dry skin, thyroid disorders are sometimes associated with other diseases and skin changes.

•Alopecia Areata is a condition in which there is sudden loss of circular areas of scalp hair and at times there can be generalized loss of scalp and body hair. Thus it may be patchy or generalized.

•Pemphigus/Pemphigoid are autoimmune blistering disorders of the skin in which one can develop open sores on the skin in cases of Pemphigus or large blisters of the skin and itching as in bullous pemphigoid.

•Lupus erythematosus is a condition of unknown etiology in which inflammation in the body develops a variety of patterns. Many organs can be involved: brain, heart, lung, skin, kidney, joints, etc. The skin changes are variable but can result in well defined scaling, scarring lesions or fixed red, circular rashes most notably over sun exposed areas.

•Vitiligo is white patch disease. Here the body has rejected the pigment cells of the skin resulting in the onset of areas of varying size with no pigment, particularly over the joints - knuckles of the fingers, wrists, knees, etc. The resulting colour change makes one look almost like a "pinto pony". These areas sunburn very easily.

•Scleroderma is a condition in which the skin becomes very scarred and bound down, at times resulting in contractures of the fingers with ulceration of fingertips and loss of function.

Overall the most common problem associated with thyroid disease is dry skin associated with hypothyroidism. This is worse in the winter with low humidity and is aggravated as we get older.

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