There's a good reason men go girl-crazy in their teens and twenties: Their testosterone Read Full Article levels are at their peak. Our site From that go to this site point, however, testosterone levels slowly decrease.
"After age 30, most men begin to experience a gradual decline in testosterone," states David Samadi, MD, chairman of the urology department at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.
Although testosterone levels never reach zero (as estrogen levels do in women during menopause), low testosterone levels men to experience symptoms like fatigue, low sex drive, and loss of muscle mass.
While reduced testosterone is more prevalent in older men, it may occur in younger guys as well. Luckily, every one of the causes of low testosterone in young men are curable, so if you experience such symptoms at any age, there is no reason to dismiss it.
Causes of Low Testosterone in Younger Men
For younger guys, a drop in testosterone levels may be caused by some illnesses, including type 2 diabetes, diabetes, chronic liver or kidney disease, COPD or other lung disorder, or adrenal gland problems, based on Dr. Samadi.
Genetic causes of low testosterone in males include the ailments Klinefelter syndrome, Kallmann syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, and Myotonic dystrophy. Another disease that could cause low testosterone is hemochromatosis, which makes the body store too much iron.
"Low testosterone can also result when something happens, like trauma or steroid use, that prevents the testes from making the hormone," says Bruce Gilbert, MD, PhD, an adjunct clinical professor of urology and reproductive medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College and director of reproductive and sexual medicine in the Smith Institute for Urology of their North Shore-LIJ Health System.
Additional causes of low testosterone in males younger than 50 include pituitary gland tumors, HIV infection, and radiation treatment or chemotherapy for cancer.
Doctors categorize causes of low testosterone as primary or secondary.
"Primary hypogonadism stems from a problem in the testicles," Samadi says.
Can It Be Low Testosterone?
Regardless of the cause, low testosterone symptoms are the same.
"Symptoms include low libido, erectile dysfunction, fatigue, decreased mental acuity and moodiness," Dr. Gilbert states.
"Younger men with low testosterone usually come to me and say, ‘I can't work out like I used to, and I've lost interest in sex.’ ”
If your blood test reveals low testosterone (usually defined as a level lower than 300 ng/dL), the doctor may treat you or refer you to a specialist, such as a urologist or endocrinologist.
Treatments for Low Testosterone in Younger Men
"When it comes to treating low testosterone in younger men, we generally reserve treatment for those who have symptoms, such as tiredness and low libido," Gilbert says.
Such testosterone supplements come in the form of a gel, injections, patches, long-acting pellets, or oral inserts.
In these circumstances,"therapies are often used just in the brief term, and if a physician has close observation and understanding of the individual," Gilbert says.
An important consideration for younger men before getting treatment is fertility. "You don't wish to offer supplemental testosterone to men who want to be fertile since it can turn off sperm production," Gilbert says.
Once a young man goes off testosterone supplementation, there's a chance his sperm count will never return to what it was before he started. "Therefore, men of reproductive age should consider alternatives which may improve their testosterone as well as preserve their sperm production," he says. One such alternative is a class of drugs known as selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs).
Other remedies for low testosterone include weight loss and other lifestyle modifications, like eating healthier and increasing exercise.
The bottom line, however, is that in the event that you've got low testosterone symptoms, then it is important to see your doctor. Then, your doctor can rule out more serious causes of your symptoms, including hypertension or a thyroid problem, and offer treatment that could enhance your power and quality of life.