Unexplained weight loss, or losing weight without trying — particularly if it's significant or persistent — could also be a symbol of an underlying medical disorder.
The point at which unexplained weight loss becomes a medical concern isn't exact. But many doctors agree that a medical evaluation is named for if you lose quite 5 percent of your weight in six months to a year, especially if you're an older adult. For example, a 5 percent weight loss in someone who is 160 pounds (72 kilograms) is 8 pounds (3.6 kilograms). In someone who is 200 pounds (90 kilograms), it's 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms).
Your weight is suffering from your calorie intake, activity level, overall health, age, nutrient absorption, and economic and social factors.
Unexplained weight loss has many causes, medical and nonmedical. Often, a mixture of things leads to a general decline in your health and a related weight loss. Sometimes a specific cause isn't found.
Usually, an unrecognized cancer will produce other symptoms or abnormalities of laboratory tests, additionally to unexplained weight loss.
Potential causes of unexplained weight loss include:
Ø Addison's disease (adrenal insufficiency)
Ø Celiac disease
Ø Changes in diet or appetite
Ø Changes in sense of smell
Ø Changes in sense of taste
Ø COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) exacerbation — worsening of symptoms
Ø Crohn's disease (a type of inflammatory bowel disease)
Ø Dental problems
Ø Depression (major depressive disorder)
Ø Heart failure
Ø Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid)
Ø Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) (underactive thyroid)
Ø Parkinson's disease
Ø Peptic ulcer
Ø Substance abuse (alcohol, cocaine, other)
Ø Ulcerative colitis
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