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Misdiagnosis of Fatigue

Fatigue: Misdiagnosis

Diagnosing fatigue and its cause may be delayed or missed because the fatigue may not be severe or consistent enough for a person to seek medical care. IN addition, some people may believe that fatigue is a normal part of aging. Fatigue is a symptom of many different conditions, and some of them are potentially serious. A thorough medical evaluation is needed to ensure an accurate diagnosis of the reason for the fatigue.

Fatigue: Related Misdiagnoses

Unnecessary hysterectomies due to undiagnosed bleeding disorder in women: The bleeding disorder called Von Willebrand's disease is quite common in women, but often fails to be correctly diagnosed. Women with the condition tend to have heavy periods, since they actually have a bleeding disorder. Severe afflictions may result in the women receiving a hysterectomy unnecessarily, when the underlying cause has not been identified. See the introduction to Von Willebrand's disease and bleeding disorder.

Anemia undiagnosed in pregnancy: The onset of anemia (low red blood cells) in pregnancy is sometimes overlooked, despite it being a well-known complication of pregnancy. The problem may be that the main symptom, i.e. fatigue, is also a typical symptom of pregnancy itself. Furthermore, diagnosis of anemia requires a blood test to determine the level of red blood cells. Failure to diagnose anemia is dangerous to the health of the mother near the end of pregnancy, and increases the risk of severe maternal hemorrhage and blood loss during birth (possibly even leading to maternal death). Anemia treatment varies by severity ranging from diet changes, iron tablets, or even iron injections; see treatment of anemia. See introduction to anemia and misdiagnosis of anemia.

Underactive thryoid may be misdiagnosed as depression: Hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid, is an endocrine gland disorder that is more common in women. It can mimic many diseases, including depression. The patient often has depressive type symptoms, and may also have other symptoms of hypothyroidism such as tingling fingers (peripheral neuropathy), hearing loss, headaches, cold insensitivity, and many other symptms. Common misdiagnoses of hypothyroidism include depression, dementia, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder (esp. rapid-cycling bipolar disorder).

Cluster of diseases with difficult diagnosis issues: There is a well-known list of medical conditions that are all somewhat difficult to diagnose, and all can present in a variety of different severities. Diseases in this group include multiple sclerosis, lupus, Lyme disease, fibromyalgia, thyroid disorders (hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism), chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes - all of these can have vague symptoms in their early presentations. Also, depression can have some symptoms similar to these conditions, and also the reverse, that many of these conditions can mimic depression and be misdiagnosed as depression.

RLS sleep disorder causing night-time leg sensations often misdiagnosed: A common but relatively unknown sleep-related disorder called Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is often misdiagnosed. The typical symptoms are night-time tingling, crawling, or burning sensations in the legs, with the irresistable urge to move the legs. This need for leg movement leads to tossing and turning, or getting up out of bed, all of which interferes with the ability to fall asleep. The sufferer then has the typical symptoms of sleep deprivation during the day: fatigue, tiredness, morning headaches, irritability, poor concentration and so on. This condition is sometimes misdiagnosed as other conditions such as ADHD, sleep disorders, other causes of insomnia, or other causes of leg tingling. Many patients also suffer from a related disorder called Periodic limb movement disorder (PLMD), which causes leg spasms or other jerky movements. See introduction to RLS or introduction to PLMD.

Pituitary conditions often undiagnosed cause of symptoms: There are a variety of symptoms that can be caused by a pituitary disorder (see symptoms of pituitary disorders). For example, fatigue, headache, weight gain, diabetes-like symptoms, and various other symptoms. Pituitary tumors and other similar conditions are not as rare as physicians tend to believe. See introduction to pituitary conditions.

Vitamin B12 deficiency under-diagnosed: The condition of Vitamin B12 deficiency is a possible misdiagnosis of various conditions, such as multiple sclerosis (see symptoms of multiple sclerosis). See symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency or misdiagnosis of multiple sclerosis.

Fatigue: Possibly Deadly Misdiagnoses

Some of the causes, which may potentially be dangerous or fatal if left undiagnosed, may include:

More about Misdiagnosis

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Fatigue:

The following list of conditions have 'Fatigue' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Fatigue or choose View All.

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Conditions listing medical complications: Fatigue:

The following list of medical conditions have 'Fatigue' or similar listed as a medical complication in our database.

 

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