While thyroid issues are less common in men, the risk should not be overlooked. Symptoms of thyroid irregularities include weight gain/loss, weakness, depression, dry skin, thinning hair, constipation, muscle and joint pain, sexual dysfunction, and fatigue. Low testosterone could be a trigger, an exacerbating factor, and even a consequence of thyroid problems in men. Graves’ disease results in hypothyroidism, while Hashimoto’s disease results in hypothyroidism in men. Moreover, studies show that 64% of men with hypothyroidism present low libido, erectile dysfunction, delayed ejaculation or sperm abnormalities.
The best way to initially test thyroid function is to measure the TSH level in a blood sample – which serves as an early warning method. For example, a high level of TSH indicates that the thyroid gland is not making enough thyroid hormone, while a low level suggests hyperthyroidism. Other forms of thyroid hormone evaluated during a thyroid lab screening include T4 and T3.