What is the pulmonary pathophysiology of myxedema coma (crisis)?

Updated: Oct 10, 2018
  • Author: Mohsen S Eledrisi, MD, FACP, FACE; Chief Editor: George T Griffing, MD  more...
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Answer

The main pulmonary effect of myxedema coma is hypoventilation, which results from central depression of ventilatory drive with decreased responsiveness to hypoxia and hypercapnia. [9, 10] Other contributing factors to hypoventilation include respiratory muscle weakness, mechanical obstruction by a large tongue, and obesity-hypoventilation syndrome. Fluid accumulation may cause pleural effusions and decreased diffusing capacity.


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