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Hypothyroid Myopathy Treatment & Management

  • Author: Divakara Kedlaya, MBBS; Chief Editor: Stephen Kishner, MD, MHA  more...
Updated: Apr 07, 2015

Rehabilitation Program

Physical Therapy

Skeletal muscle weakness is the ultimate cause of most clinical problems in myopathy. In a study of patients with slowly progressive myopathies, a 12-week, moderate-resistance (30% of maximum isometric force) exercise program resulted in strength gains ranging from 4-20% without any notable deleterious effects. In the same population, a 12-week, high-resistance (training at the maximum weight that a subject could lift 12 times) exercise program showed no further added benefits when compared with the moderate-resistance program, and there was evidence of overwork weakness in some subjects.

Early intervention with gentle, low-impact aerobic exercises may increase muscle efficiency and cardiovascular performance, may fight fatigue and depression, may maintain body weight, and may improve pain tolerance. Activities include walking, swimming, and stationary bicycling.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy may be needed for training in the performance of ADL to enable the patient to compensate for proximal muscle weakness. Occupational therapists are able to provide adaptive equipment to assist the patient when he/she is performing ADL.

Recreational Therapy

Maintaining the ability to do avocational activities that promote physical fitness and mental health is important.


Medical Issues/Complications

Because there are multiple causes of muscle weakness, patients may not respond well to initial therapy because they have an undiagnosed secondary cause of myopathy. A thorough investigation for all causes is essential.



See the list below:

  • Physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist
  • Endocrinologist
  • Neurologist
Contributor Information and Disclosures

Divakara Kedlaya, MBBS Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Loma Linda University School of Medicine; Medical Director, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and Pain Management, St Mary Corwin Medical Center

Divakara Kedlaya, MBBS is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Colorado Medical Society, American Association of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.


Diana Echeverry, MD, MPH Assistant Professor, Department of Endocrinology, Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Received salary from Medscape for employment. for: Medscape.

Kat Kolaski, MD Assistant Professor, Departments of Orthopedic Surgery and Pediatrics, Wake Forest University School of Medicine

Kat Kolaski, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine, American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Stephen Kishner, MD, MHA Professor of Clinical Medicine, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Residency Program Director, Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans

Stephen Kishner, MD, MHA is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, American Association of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Additional Contributors

Elizabeth A Moberg-Wolff, MD Medical Director, Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine Associates

Elizabeth A Moberg-Wolff, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine, American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

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