Thyroid UK
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Low Testosterone or Depression

Hi, 45 yr male going through a rough patch with depression, severe stress, cognitive and libido issues. GP is firmly in the "you have health anxiety and this is depression" camp, which I am prone to, but I decided to get my androgens checked (again).

My total T in August 2017 was 24.7 n/mol but Jan 2018 labs (Medichecks) show:

DHEA-S 4.360 umol/L (0.44 - 13.40)

FSH 8.82 IU/L (1.50 - 12.40)

LH *9.2 IU/L (1.70 - 8.60)

T 28.9 nmol/L (7.60 - 31.40

SHBG * 60.7 nmol/L (16.00 - 55.00)

FAI 47.61 Ratio (24.00 - 104.00)

My Sex Hormone Binding Globulin is way too high, so my free T will be low - seriously exacerbating or causing my current problems. A raised LH shows my pituitary is in overdrive telling my body to produce more T, possibly to compensate for low free T.

SHBG increases with excess estradiol / E2 - so my weight increase / diet aren't helping. I may be aromatasing T into E2. Low insulin or growth hormone raise SHBG.

This is worrying because following a nasty thai boxing sparring session in 2015 and concussion, I had extensive 9am fasted blood panels including GH at 0.1mcg/l (all doctors have basically ignored/refused to follow this up). I've had symptoms that overlap with low GH since late 2016.

I strongly feel my GP needs to

Rule out GH (via stimulation test or possibly IGF-1)

Check E2 or free T

Assess whether my antidepressant is messing with hepatic function - SHBG

Re-visit low saliva cortisol results from last Autumn

Basically, if my GP is unwilling to look beyond the total T value of 28.9, where do I go from here?

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7 Replies
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High shgb = low testosterone = low mood. Lh is probably raised in an attempt to stimulate testosterone production from Leydig cells, so you may have enough testosterone - just not by the best means. Calling anything "health anxiety" = Dr Richard Head! You'll probably have to go to an endo privately and get off anti-Ds if you can do so safely.

Hi thanks for replying

That's my interpretration of both the high LH and total T, plus a few other people have also arrived at the same conclusion.

Long story short, lost my temp contract in Dec due to depression, can just about pay my next month's rent atm, private treatment is a dream. I'm hoping my GP acts on the latest bloods, otherwise my options become limited to natural supplements to reduce E2/SHBG and/or changing GP surgeries.

I looked into foods and SHBG, its quite surprising - high protein, mono and poly fats, nuts, avocados etc increase it, while raisins, dates, white rice, prunes, potatoes and butter reduce it! Also high (healthy) carb diets = high testosterone.

This is different than what the fitness industry push - makes you think whether some people started steroids because their free T got screwed through diet.

Do you train hard. If you you will have to go much easier.

Do you have thyroid blood tests?

Also remember that low T3 = depression and high activity levels can = low T3

What about the use of Kelp, Selenium (taken before), or Iodine?

I know some people say you shouldn't use iodine-increasing supplements if antibodies/potential Hashimotos

Or something like this healthmonthly.co.uk/swanson... ?

Hard to say. I've seen some signs that iodine and selenium may increase T4 to T3 conversion and others that say that you get high SHBG when hyper and iodine used to be a treatment for hyperthyroidism, so that would suggest that it would lower SHGB (which could be a good thing for you), but countries with higher iodine intake tend to have more instances of Hashis. You really want to ask on a forum dedicated to sex hormone problems, or get a full thyroid panel done (TSH, FT4, FT3, TPO and TG antibodies) and post on here in a new thread for people to advise

When you see a user name of Hidden, it means that the person is no longer a member of this forum.

We often close posts that were originated by people who have left - there is no point in wasting our time making replies. Occasionally, the thread might still be active and popular and will be left. More often, it is simply a case of none of the admins noticing!

I shall now be closing this post to replies.

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