Reel Doctor Talk

Something specifically called a chalupa

by Smitha R. Chadaga MD

In addition to watching How I Met Your Mother during TV's winter hiatus, I have also been enjoying Fraiser. One particularly hilarious episodes is in season 7 when Fraiser (Kelsey Grammer) finds himself handcuffed to a stripper while his brother, Niles (David Hyde Pierce), tries to cover up the fact that his newly overweight ex wife is on the premises from his plastic surgeon girlfriend who is worried about the rumor that she caused Niles's ex wife's weight gain by nicking her thyroid during a neck tuck.  And that is just five minutes of the episode! Can nicking a thyroid really cause weight can? Possibly.


The thyroid gland is found in the neck and helps to control metabolism.  If the thyroid gland under performs (hypothyroidism) for any reason then weight gain can be seen.  Other symptoms include:

1.  fatigue

2.  constipation

3.  depression

4.  cold intolerance (feeling cold when others are feeling temperate)

5.  hair loss


If left unchecked hypothyroidism can lead to low blood pressure, heart failure, low body temperature and even coma.  Simple blood tests often diagnose hypothyroidism and treatment usually involves taking thyroid replacement medication. 


In the end Niles manages to get his ex-wife out of the apartment with no one the wiser.  No word of if she got her chalupa.