Schmidt’s syndrome is an autoimmune polyglandular syndrome first used to describe patients with both Addison’s disease and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (autoimmune hypothyroidism). Today, the term Schmidt’s syndrome is used synonymously with autoimmune polyglandular syndrome type II to describe conditions of adrenal insufficiency occurring in conjunction with one or more of the following conditions: type 1 diabetes, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, hypoparathyroidism (parathyroid hormone deficiency), or gonadal failure.
Because different glands are affected in different people, the symptoms vary depending on the glands affected and the severity of the hormone deficiency or excess and the degree of glandular atrophy. Some patients with Schmidt’s syndrome have stimulating TSH receptor antibodies(also known as thyroid stimulating immunoglobulins or TSI) and initially present with symptoms and signs of hyperthyroidism.
Diagnosis is made by detecting adrenal antibodies along with the characteristic autoantibodies and/or hormone levels associated with autoimmune thyroid disease, diabetes, hypoarathyroidism or gonadal failure.