Andropause can be considered the male counterpart of menopause, when the production of testosterone decreases and there are accompanying mental symptoms. Along with the decline in testosterone, some men experience symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, depression, and sexual problems.
Unlike menopause in women which represents a well-defined period in which hormone production stops completely, male hormone (testosterone) decline is a slower process. The testes, unlike the ovaries, do not run out of the substance it needs to make testosterone. A healthy man may be able to make sperm well into his eighties or even longer. As a result of disease, subtle changes in the function of the testes may occur as early as 45 to 50 years of age, and more dramatically after the age of 70 in some men.
While testosterone replacement is one of the most effective ways to relief andropause symptoms and may be indicated in the aging male with documented hypogonadism, this hormone should not be used in those with normal testosterone levels.
Clinical studies have shown testosterone supplementation to be safe, although no long-term placebo-controlled trials have been carried out. Among the possible side effects of testosterone replacement therapy, there is an increased risk of prostate cancer. Although there is no evidence that supplemental testosterone will trigger prostate cancer, patients are required to have a screening for prostatic carcinoma, before it can be prescribed.
If you’re considering androgen replacement therapy, talk to your doctor. They might also advise lifestyle changes, or other medications, to help with some of your symptoms. There are several formulations of testosterone currently available. Transdermal gels, are favored because of their ease of administration.
Men using AndroGel must be careful to prevent contact between gel-covered areas and other people’s skin. The drug can be transferred by skin-to-skin contact and can have harmful effects on women, especially pregnant women and their unborn babies. Women who touch AndroGel should wash with soap and water as soon as possible. Female partners of men who use AndroGel should contact a physician if they develop signs that the hormone is being transferred, such as acne, increased body hair, or other male sexual characteristics.
About The Author –
Lisa Macfarlane is a professional health writer and editor who specializes in sexual health and health issues.
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