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2023 Author: Benjamin Dyson | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 01:37
Testosterone is the main male hormone, being responsible for characteristics considered masculine such as beard growth, deepening of the voice or increase in muscle mass. In addition, testosterone also stimulates sperm production, being directly related to male fertility. Although it is considered a male hormone, testosterone is also present in women, but in smaller amounts.
After age 50, it is common to have a decrease in testosterone production, which characterizes andropause, which is similar to menopause in women, but in men. However, the decrease in testosterone production in men does not mean that they become infertile, but that their reproductive capacity is reduced, as sperm production is compromised.
Low Testosterone Symptoms
In men, decreased testosterone production can lead to the following symptoms:
- Decreased libido;
- Lower sexual performance;
- Decrease in muscle mass;
- Increased body fat;
- Beard thinning and overall hair loss;
- Tiredness and indisposition.
In addition to sexual dysfunction, low testosterone in men can also cause problems such as osteopenia, osteoporosis and altered male fertility. Decreased hormone production is common and occurs especially with excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages, when a man smokes, is overweight or has diabetes.
Testosterone is also present in women, but in lower concentrations. However, when testosterone levels decrease in women, there may also be symptoms such as:
- Loss of muscle mass;
- Accumulation of visceral fat;
- Decreased sexual desire;
- Generalized disinterest, which can be confused with depression in some cases.
On the other hand, when testosterone levels are increased in women, typically male characteristics may develop, such as hair growth on the chest, face and inner thighs, near the groin.
When symptoms appear that may be related to changes in testosterone levels, it is important to consult an endocrinologist, urologist, in the case of men, or gynecologist, in the case of women. Thus, it is possible to verify the production of this hormone and, if necessary, start the treatment.
The tests that indicate the amount of testosterone in the body are not very specific and are not always reliable because their values change constantly, according to the time of collection, ethnicity, age and lifestyle habits, such as diet he althy and physical activity or sedentary lifestyle. Therefore, the doctor does not always request the exam to evaluate its concentration in the bloodstream based only on the symptoms that the person presents.
Normally, the dosage of free testosterone and total testosterone are requested. Free testosterone represents the concentration of testosterone that is available in the body and can be absorbed to perform its function in the body, and is equivalent to 2 to 3% of total testosterone, which corresponds to the total amount of testosterone produced by the body and which is bound to proteins. Learn more about the total and free testosterone test.
How to Increase Testosterone
Testosterone supplements must be used under medical advice and can be found in the form of pills, gel, cream or transdermal patch. Some trade names are Sustanon, Somatrodol, Provacyl and Androgel.
However, before resorting to the use of supplements, it is important to look for alternatives that stimulate the production of this hormone, such as physical activity, increased consumption of foods rich in zinc, vitamin A and D, good night of sleep and adequacy of weight for height. If these strategies do not increase testosterone production, the physician should initiate appropriate treatment.
See how to naturally increase testosterone.
When testosterone is below the recommended level and the man has signs and symptoms of decreased testosterone production, the urologist may prescribe the use of testosterone in the form of an injection or gel to be used as prescribed.
The effects of testosterone in men can be observed in 1 month of treatment and with that he should present himself more confident, with greater sexual desire, greater muscle stiffness and feeling stronger. Thus, testosterone supplementation can be indicated during andropause to reduce its effects, improving the quality of life of men.
Testosterone use should be recommended by a doctor as it can lead to he alth problems such as fatty liver, infertility, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and atherosclerosis. See how male hormone replacement is performed and the possible side effects.
In the woman
When the amount of testosterone that a woman has is very low, the gynecologist can observe these symptoms and request the exam to evaluate its concentration in the blood.
Testosterone supplementation is only indicated in case of androgen deficiency syndrome or when the ovaries stop working due to ovarian cancer, for example. When the decrease in testosterone in women is caused by another reason, it is better to try to balance hormone levels by increasing estrogen.