Sir William Gull,1 in 1873, called attention to a disease with a distinctive group of symptoms which later became known as myxedema, and since then physicians' interest in this disease has steadily increased. Myxedema, according to Boothby's 2 definition, is "a constitutional disease, occurring in adults, due to decrease or absence of the secretion (thyroxin) of the thyroid gland as a result of its atrophy or removal, characterized by a markedly decreased basal metabolic rate, a myxedematous condition of the tissues, a slowed, impaired mental condition, a typical facial expression, and other secondary manifestations."
Since the time of Gull, each year has brought forth an ever increasing amount of literature concerning this disease, especially about the diagnostic features. Even now, however, it is surprising how frequently myxedema is unrecognized, and the patient allowed to go from place to place in search of help, in many instances treated for such
CHANEY WC. TENDON REFLEXES IN MYXEDEMA: A VALUABLE AID IN DIAGNOSIS. JAMA. 1924;82(25):2013–2016. doi:10.1001/jama.1924.02650510013005
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