Hashimoto’s disease, also called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, is an autoimmune disease in which the thyroid is attacked by the body’s immune system. In patients who are suffering from Hashimoto’s disease, antibodies react against proteins in the thyroid gland and go into attack, gradually killing thyroid cells. In the early stages of Hashimoto’s disease, patients may experience few to no symptoms. But as thyroid cells are damaged during each autoimmune attack, those cells release their stored thyroid hormones.
This causes the patient’s thyroid hormone levels to be temporarily high, resulting in symptoms of hyperthyroidism such as panic attacks, anxiety, a fast heartbeat, sweating, shaking hands, diarrhea, and quick weight loss.