Fans of talk show queen Wendy Williams were shocked by her emaciated appearance in paparazzi photos that surfaced on Wednesday.
In an interview in 2009 Wendy revealed she was diagnosed with the autoimmune disorder Graves' disease.
Graves' Disease causes the immune system to attack the thyroid, a butterfly-shaped gland at the base of the neck that secretes thyroid hormone thyroxine, which helps regulate the body's metabolism, heart rate, and muscle control.
Graves' disease can cause drastic weight loss because it accelerates the body's metabolism and causes weight loss even when a person overeats.
Graves' disease is the main cause of hyperthyroidism (overproduction of thyroid hormones).
Signs and Symptoms of Graves' Disease
Consult your doctor or health practitioner if you experience any of these signs and symptoms.
Treatment includes anti-thyroid medications, Radioactive iodine therapy (to destroy the thyroid), and/or surgery to remove the thyroid gland
This has been your Medical Minute.
More Info On the Web
Graves' Disease -- Thyroid.org
Graves' Disease -- Mayo Clinic
What is Graves' Disease -- Mayo Clinic
Graves' Disease -- Healthline
Photo by RTimages / Splash News