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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Diagnosed with hashimotos, depression & anxiety. Could it be CFS also?

    I'm a mother of 3. After birth of 1st child 6yrs ago i was extremely fatigued. Had tests done which diagnosed hashimotos but have symptoms of over & under active so has never been controlled. They also said i had depression & anxiety but the anti depressants never worked. I suffer extreme fatigue to the point where some days its a struggle to get out of bed or off the couch, muscle weakness, heart palpitations, bad memory/poor concentration, insomnia, joint pain, constant headaches, constant diziness, tenderness under arm pits and feel like i'm getting a cold. I am aenemic, low vitamin B12 & D. the only thing that came back normal was my cholesterol. The doctors around my area are not very reliable. Could i be suffering from CFS and how do i go about getting this tested? Thanks you
  • Find a professional to answer your question


    HealthShare Member

    From what you describe it is how I was….I used to say I had “the next best thing” to CFS if that was what I had or not I still have no idea. My symptoms were essentially the same as yours. 
    Finding answers is a battle. 

  • 1




    Nathan Butler

    Exercise Physiologist

    Nathan Butler is an exercise physiologist and founder of the multi-disciplinary Active Health Clinic whom specialise in chronic health especially Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, orthostatic intolerance … View Profile

    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a diagnosis of exclusion meaning that there are no other medical explanations for your fatigue which could include depression, anxiety or Hashimoto's. If your thyroid is under control as well as your anxiety and depression then from your symptom list you would for fill one of the diagnostic criteria for CFS.
    Understanding GP's or specialists can be challenging to find depending on where you live however if you email me then I can suggest some alternatives in your area. Making sure that there are no other contributing factors to your fatigue is important.
    If you are diagnosed with CFS then the appropriate management can lead to significant improvements in your quality of life.
    Good luck,

  • 2


    Emma Boucher


    Oh Wow, it sounds like such a struggle for you right now- experiencing all those symptoms must be so debilitating. As Nathan mentioned, there is no specific test for CFS as it is a illness of exclusion. The pituitary gland regulates the reproductive, thyroid and adrenal organs, and due to the feedback mechanism to the pituitary if one organ is not functioning properly (ie the thyroid) it is common to have problems with others (ie adrenals- stress/anxiety/insomnia) or reproductive issues.(ie painful or irregular periods).  Fatigue symptoms are common when the thyroid is not functioning properly and can even lead to anxiety symptoms as well. However, nutrient deficiencies can also lead to anxiety and depression and CFS.
    Iron is essential for energy production and healthy immune function and a deficiency can cause dizziness, heart palpitations, and fatigue. During pregnancy the need for iron increases dramatically and the baby gets preference over the mother, which can result in a deficiency for the mum.
    B12 deficiency symptoms can include tingling, irritability, anxiety, depression fatigue, memory loss and muscle weakness. Vitamin D is associated with the functioning of the parathyroid and deficiency can cause muscle fatigue and weakness. Vitamin D deficiency is also linked with depressed mood- as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) occurs during winter when we are less likely to get enough Vitamin D from the sun.
    I can understand it has been hard for you to find a reliable practitioner, but I would encourage you to persevere to find a practitioner that can focus on improving your thyroid functioning and nutrients deficiency corrected. Perhaps even seeing a Naturopath, Nutritionist or Dietician to increase foods that contain Vit D, Iron and B12. A Psychologist or Counsellor will be able to help you to manage the anxiety and depression and give you strategies to improve your sleep.
    Warm Regards

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