Symptoms of Male Thyroid Problems

The front region of the neck has a small structure that is called the thyroid gland. It is located just on top of your collarbone. It is small but the importance of the thyroid, as far as your well-being and health are   concerned, is completely disproportionate with the size. The thyroid is responsible for producing hormones that control how quickly the cells in your body utilize nutrients and carry out various functions. If the thyroid becomes underactive as in the case of hypothyroidism, or become overactive like in hyperthyroidism, numerous bodily functions may be affected. The changes that are caused by problems with the thyroid are similar in males and females. Men experience symptoms different than woman do.

FertilitySymptoms of Male Thyroid Problems

Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism may cause fertility problems in men. If a man is experiencing a thyroid that is overactive, his sperm may be produced with movement that is slow. This is known as low motility. They may interfere in the ability to become a father, as stated in a study that was published in 2004 in “Best Practice and Research: Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.” If the male begins a treatment with medicine that returns the thyroid hormones to a normal state, the problems with the sperm may be reversed in most cases.

Fertility problems can also be apparent in men with hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism may cause an overproduction of prolactin which is a hormone produced in the pituitary gland. If there is an overproduction of prolactin by the pituitary, it may result in a decrease in testosterone production. This is responsible for sperm production.

In winter of 2012 there was a study reported in a publication of the “Journal of Urology” that found when men had hypothyroidism may result in a lower sperm count which could cause a problem with conception. This was compared with a small control group. The fluctuations in sperm count were often reversible once treatment was started.

Sexual Function

Symptoms of Male Thyroid ProblemsThere are substantial effects in the function of sexual arousal in men who have experienced changes in the function of their thyroid. In the case of either hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism, there were problems in sexual function as reported in a study from December 2005 in a publication from the “Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.” There were studies performed on a group including 34 men who had hyperthyroidism. In 50% of the cases, the men experienced early ejaculation. 15% of the same group also experienced erectile dysfunction which affected the ability to hold an erection.

Another study involved 14 men who had hypothyroidism and close to 65% also experienced erectile dysfunction, poor drive, late ejaculation and a libido that was considered low.

Even though it is not known exactly what mechanisms involved in high or low hormone levels of the thyroid causes sexual dysfunction, symptoms in numerous men improved with both groups as soon as the thyroid problems have been addressed.

Other symptoms

Men who have thyroid problems also may share many of the same symptoms that women experience. If the hormones in the thyroid are too high, men may exhibit excessive sweating or warmth under normal temperatures.  There may also be a loss of weight even if diet doesn’t change. Other symptoms may include anxiety, nervousness, trembling of hands, and jitteriness. Heart rates also may be faster and may be described as fluttering or pounding of the chest.

In hypothyroidism, men may feel cold even when it is warm in the room. They may also exhibit fatigue, weakness, constipation, weight gain, sluggishness and depression.

Thyroid cancer may develop in women or men and there may be no symptoms in the beginning. In the later stages, there may be difficulty in swallowing or hoarseness.