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Waldenström's disease

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An acute form of thyrotoxicosis with muscular and cerebral complications, usually seen in elderly patients, and suspected of being due to iodine deficiency. Common symptoms include goitre, exophthalmos and thyrotoxic crisis with severe vomiting, diarrhoea and weight loss, auricular fibrillation, low diastolic pressure and fever that may rise to extreme values. Severe terminal hyperpyrexia in fatal cases. It is often associated with bulbar paralysis with 6th, 7th and 12th nerve palsies which may be combined with psychotic behaviour and hallucinations. These neurological features include dysphagia, dysphonia, choreiform movements, frequent apraxia, calculia, dysarthria, and transitory palsies.


  • J. G. Waldenström:
    Acute thyrotoxic encephalo- or myopathy, its cause and treatment.
    Acta Medica Scandinavica, Stockholm, 1945, 121: 251-294.

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