Thyrotoxic Periodic Paralysis: A Concise Review of the Literature

Muhammad Ali Chaudhry, Siddharth Wayangankar
Current Rheumatology Reviews 2016, 12 (3): 190-194

BACKGROUND: Thyrotoxic periodic paralysis (TPP) is a rare disease entity highlighted by hypokalemia, flaccid paralysis, and thyrotoxicosis. It usually presents as sudden profound muscle weakness manifested as almost complete immobility and can affect proximal and distal limb muscles, respiratory musculature as well as the cardiac conduction system.

METHODS: A comprehensive review of Thyrotoxic periodic paralysis from 1885 to date was carried out by an extensive and thorough literature research including but not limited to Pubmed, Medline and EMBASE.

OBJECTIVE: This review emphasizes the etiology, pathogenesis, management and prognosis of TPP and aims to highlight clinical awareness of early diagnosis and rapid initiation of treatment.

CONCLUSION: It is extremely important to diagnose this condition as early as possible as it is potentially reversible and prompt treatment leads to rapid resolution with no residual weakness. Missing the diagnosis can result in possible fatal complications such as hypercapneic respiratory failure and ventricular fibrillation.

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