Low testosterone

flickr.com/ photos /kevharb /4097634204/

flickr.com/ photos /kevharb /4097634204/

If  you have watched ANY sports on television, you must have been barraged by ads about “Low T.”   The advertisers are eluding to low testosterone.

Testosterone is the male hormone that is responsible for sexual libido and the ability to achieve a significant erection in men.  If testosterone levels are low, sexual health is most noticeably affected: decreased sexual libido and erectile dysfunction.  Other symptoms of this may be mood changes, fatigue, sleep disturbances, loss of muscle or bone mass, and lack of motivation.

To diagnose low testosterone, a history and physical exam are paired with lab work.

Treatment options include behavioral changes and medication.

  • If obese, weight loss can best help men keep testosterone as testosterone.  The outer fat cells help testosterone change to estrogen (predominant female hormone) so decreasing fat cells help testosterone not convert.
  • Heavy alcohol abusers will benefit by decreasing alcohol consumption.
  • Otherwise there are testosterone replacement forms for both intramuscular injections and topical replacement.  Oral forms of testosterone do not lead to stable blood levels so this is not well tolerated and may cause liver damage.

If you are symptomatic, seek help from your doctor.  Do not self-treat.  There are risks of taking too  much testosterone such as blood clots which can cause heart attack or stroke or prostate problems.

About drlesliegreenberg

I have been practicing as a family physician for over 20 years--as both an educator of physicians and clinician. From infancy to the elderly, I perform obstetrics and general medicine. I love my career and am passionate about my field of knowledge and my patients. Follow me on Facebook at Leslie Md Greenberg Medical Disclaimer The content of this website is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended as, nor should it be considered a substitute for, professional medical advice. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating any medical or health condition. If you have or suspect you have a medical problem, promptly contact your professional healthcare provider.
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