April 26th, 2016
A lot of people are well-aware that low testosterone levels can present with poor sex drive in men; but are you aware that there are several other endocrinological disorders that may also cause sexual dysfunction?
Thyroid disorder presents with a variety of disabling symptoms; one of which is low libido or poor sex drive. Thyroid disorder may be primary (due to a lesion or disorder of thyroid gland itself) or secondary (due to failure of hypothalamus or pituitary gland). It is imperative to mention that both hypo (low) as well as hyper (high) secretion of thyroid gland can lead to sexual complaints.
According to a study published in Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (1), investigators analyzed sexual functions in 48 adult males with diagnosed thyroid disorder (14 males were hypothyroid and 34 males were hyperthyroid) and concluded that:
All the patients were prescribed adequate treatments to restore the hormonal balance over an 8-16 week therapy period. After the normalization of serum thyroid levels (as evidenced by serum levels of Thyroid stimulating hormone and Thyroid binding globulins), patients reported remarkable improvements in the sexual functions.
Besides males, females are also vulnerable to experience sexual disorders (such as menstrual irregularity, impaired fertility and altered libido) with abnormal thyroid hormone levels. If you are experiencing sexual dysfunction, it is highly recommended to see a healthcare professional for thorough hormonal investigation before opting for testosterone supplements.
Studies suggests that mild to moderate alterations in the secretion of thyroid hormone may have deleterious effects on the libido. Here is how thyroid affects male sexual functions.
Some other endocrinological disorders that may also interfere with your libido and sexual health are (2):
If you are suspecting a thyroid disorder, speak to a healthcare professional to test your thyroid functions. TSH levels (or thyroid stimulating hormone) are usually helpful in determining the cause/ source of primary pathology. You can also get benefitted from a variety of treatment options to address your hormonal needs; such as:
1. Carani, C., Isidori, A. M., Granata, A., Carosa, E., Maggi, M., Lenzi, A., & Jannini, E. A. (2005). Multicenter study on the prevalence of sexual symptoms in male hypo-and hyperthyroid patients. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 90(12), 6472-6479.
2. Bhasin, S., Enzlin, P., Coviello, A., & Basson, R. (2007). Sexual dysfunction in men and women with endocrine disorders. The Lancet, 369(9561), 597-611.
3. Maggi, M., Buvat, J., Corona, G., Guay, A., & Torres, L. O. (2013). Hormonal causes of male sexual dysfunctions and their management (hyperprolactinemia, thyroid disorder, GH disorders, and DHEA). The journal of sexual medicine, 10(3), 661-677.