Testosterone is the hormone responsible for typically male characteristics such as a deeper voice, facial hair and a muscular build. As men age testosterone levels start to decrease, with levels peaking during early adulthood and then waning at a rate of 1-2 percent a year starting sometime in a man’s 30s. By the time a man hits andropause, which is a sort of male menopause, they may be exhibiting signs of Low Testosterone. No matter your age, it’s a good time to speak with your urologist about your testosterone levels and manage to manage it as you age.
Factors that Contribute to Low Testosterone
Low Testosterone is regarded as a normal sign of aging that affects men 45 and older. There is no one reason why testosterone starts to decrease over time, but doctors believe that these declining levels can be hastened as a result of any number of factors, to include injury or infection; cancer and/or its treatments; lifestyle issues like alcoholism, stress and obesity; and chronic illnesses such as like Type 2 diabetes, HIV/AIDS and liver and kidney disease. Insufficient or lack of quality sleep, and drug or anabolic steroid abuse can contribute to low or declining levels of testosterone, as can many of the medications that are prescribed for other medical conditions.
Symptoms of Low Testosterone
Because there are so many reasons why men suffer from Low Testosterone, its symptoms are often regarded as standard signs of getting older. However, these signs and symptoms can be indicative of Low Testosterone, and include –
- Loss of libido or erectile dysfunction.
- Weight gain, the result of an imbalance between a man’s testosterone and estrogen levels.
- Hair loss, primarily because testosterone is the hormone responsible for hair growth.
- Fatigue, depression and mood swings.
- Decreased body mass and bone density. As men’s bone mass starts to decrease, their risk of bone breakage or developing osteoporosis increases.
Treating Low Testosterone in Adult Males
When supervised by a highly skilled urologist, Low Testosterone is relatively simple to treat. Many urologists recommend testosterone replacement therapy, of which there are several options to include injections, TESTOPEL® testosterone pellets and topical testosterone gel prescription medications.
Your urologist may also recommend aggressive lifestyle changes, such as re-evaluating your diet, increasing exercise, eliminating smoking and excessive drinking, and seeking out ways to reduce stress and getting more rest. If after a full examination your urologist finds an underlying reason, such as illness or medical condition, that is playing a role in your low testosterone levels, he will refer you to a specialist and work collaboratively with that medical professional to ensure you receive comprehensive treatment to address all your symptoms and diagnoses.
Low Testosterone Treatments in Phoenix
If you suffering from symptoms associated with Low Testosterone and live in or around the greater in Phoenix area, it’s time to see a urologist. Dr. Desiderio (Desi) Avila of Ironwood Urology is committed to the evaluation and treatment of men’s health issues, and is the only fellowship-trained men’s specialist to arrive in Phoenix in the last 15 years. Dr. Avila is an expert on all aspects of men’s health – from infertility issues to erectile dysfunction – and he treats each patient with dignity and respect. If you think you have Low Testosterone, or it’s been a while since you’ve had your prostate checked, call Dr. Avila today at (480) 961-2323 or request an appointment online.