Causes - Thyroid Causes - Thyroid

In this topic center, we explore the relationship between thyroid health and your fertility.

How your thyroid works
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) triggers the thyroid to produce two different hormones, T3 and T4. When the thyroid produces too much (hyperthyroid) or too little (hypothyroid) of these hormones, thyroid problems can occur. This can lead to fertility problems, making it harder for you to get pregnant. Thankfully, treatments are available for thyroid-related infertility.

Getting tested
To find out if your thyroid is causing your fertility problems, you will need to visit a doctor to have a simple thyroid test. This test will determine whether too much or not enough TSH is being produced, ruling out possible causes of infertility.

Thyroid and your diet
Keep this in mind if you are concerned about your thyroid health: one culprit in cases of hyperthyroidism that can lead to infertility and other health issues is having too much iodine in your diet. Iodine is found in regular table salt and other food sources. The thyroid gland needs a certain amount of dietary iodine to keep it healthy but too much iodine can lead to a hyperthyroid. Conversely, on rare occasions, low iodine in a diet can lead to a hypothyroid.

Pregnancy is possible
Whether hyper- or hypothyroid, under the care of a fertility specialist, women have very good chances of becoming pregnant. There are risks, however, and it is important to be monitored by a specialist throughout pregnancy. Some women who are hyperthyroid may run the risk of having a low birth-weight baby or have problems with pre-term labor. Those with a hypothyroid may have a higher risk of miscarrying. Women with any type of thyroid issue need to work with a fertility specialist and be monitored regularly to ensure a healthy pregnancy.