What Is the Link Between Hypothyroidism and Infertility ?

If you are thinking about hypothyroidism and infertility you should know that the thyroid is a gland with a butterfly shape that is located in your neck.

Normally you don’t even know that it’s there, but if it doesn’t function normally, you might not be able to get pregnant.

Hypothyroidism and Infertility

The theory of the thyroid and infertility

The thyroid gland produces different kinds of hormones and the most important one is thyroxine (T4). If there is too much of this hormone we are talking about hyperthyroidism, but if it is too little of it, it is called hypothyroidism. The symptoms can be very mild and so a lot of people don’t even notice them.

Fertility problems

Infertility and hypothyroidism may go hand in hand because hypothyroidism interferes with ovulation leading to anovulation even if the patient has regular menstrual periods. The women who have problems of this kind and don’t receive treatment have higher chances of having a miscarriage.

When thinking about hypothyroidism and infertility even if women are diagnosed and they receive medication and treatment, they need to be closely monitored. During pregnancy the metabolism speeds up and sometimes the thyroid can’t keep up with it.

In some cases of infertility caused by hypothyroidism women have high levels of prolactin. This is the hormone that maintains milk production after birth. Before birth the hormone can prevent women from getting pregnant. This hormone also prevents ovulation.

Luteal phase defect

In case you are thinking about hypothyroidism and infertility you should know that the effects that hypothyroidism has on the metabolism can bring a condition known as the luteal phase defect. In normal cases the luteal phase is the period between ovulation and your period and it is supposed to last for 12-16 days.

If we are talking about hypothyroidism caused infertility then this phase becomes shorter than ten days and this can result in fertility problems. This is because the lining of the uterus can’t build up to be able to support the embryo. Even if it is fertilized, the embryo will be flushed from the body during the following period.

Blood tests

In order to recognize hypothyroidism and infertility all you need are some simple blood tests to measure the T4 and TSH levels. TSH is a kind of thermostat for the body. It is produced by the pituitary gland to regulate the function of the thyroid. The levels of this hormone could also be too high or too low because of the thyroid problems.

If the blood tests measure the levels of these hormones, you will know whether you have to think about hypothyroidism and fertility or not. There is also a test that checks for the presence of anti-thyroid antibodies. If the level of these antibodies is high, it means that you have a thyroid problem. This is known as Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.

There is a lot to know about hypothyroidism and infertility and you should ask your doctor about this matter. You could ask your doctor to do some tests too.


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