What causes similar symptoms to hyperthyroidism?

Many, many things. Most overweight people think/hope they have an under active thyroid gland, so doc can give them thyroid replacement and they'll lose the weight (i remember one case in 40 years practice). Many people think they have overactive thyroid when pulse is fast, palpitations in chest, sweat a lot, diarrhea frequently, lose weight or hair, ...Most don't, but check. I do thyroid screening tests routinely.

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