Late-Onset Hypogonadism in a Male Patient with Long COVID Diagnosed by Exclusion of ME/CFS

Yoshiaki Soejima, Yuki Otsuka, Kazuki Tokumasu, Yasuhiro Nakano, Ko Harada, Kenta Nakamoto, Naruhiko Sunada, Yasue Sakurada, Kou Hasegawa, Hideharu Hagiya, Keigo Ueda, Fumio Otsuka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

After the acute phase of COVID-19, some patients have been reported to have persistent symptoms including general fatigue. We have established a COVID-19 aftercare clinic (CAC) to provide care for an increasing number of these patients. Here, we report the case of a 36-year-old man who developed post-COVID fatigue after acute infection with SARS-CoV-2. In the acute phase of COVID-19, the patient’s fever resolved within four days; however, general fatigue persisted for three months, and he visited our CAC 99 days after the initial infection. Examination revealed a high Aging Male’s Symptoms (AMS) score of 44 and low free testosterone (FT) level of 5.5 pg/mL, which meet the Japanese criteria of late-onset hypogonadism (LOH) syndrome. Imaging studies revealed an atrophic pituitary in addition to fatty liver and low bone mineral density. Anterior pituitary function tests showed a low follicle-stimulating hormonelevel and delayed reaction of luteinizing hormone (LH) after gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) stimulation, indicating the possibility of hypothalamic hypogonadism in addition to primary hypogonadism seen in patients with post-COVID-19 conditions. After the initiation of Japanese traditional medicine (Kampo medicine: hochuekkito followed by juzentaihoto), the patient’s symptoms as well as his AMS score and serum FT level were noticeably improved. Furthermore, follow-up tests of GnRH stimulation revealed improvements in LH responsiveness. Although many patients have been reported to meet the criteria of ME/CFS such as our case, we emphasize the possibility of other underlying pathologies including LOH syndrome. In conclusion, LOH syndrome should be considered a cause of general fatigue in patients with post-COVID-19 conditions and herbal treatment might be effective for long COVID symptoms due to LOH (264 words).

Original languageEnglish
Article number536
JournalMedicina (Lithuania)
Volume58
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2022

Keywords

  • free testosterone
  • general fatigue
  • late-onset hypogonadism
  • long COVID
  • post-COVID condition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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