Testosterone levels naturally decline with age, and play important roles for both men and women.
In men, testosterone is important for maintaining muscle bulk, bone density, sexual and reproductive function, adequate levels of red blood cells and also a sense of well-being.
In women, testosterone can play a role in their sexual well-being, especially after menopause. By the time a woman reaches menopause, she produces only about half as much testosterone as she did in her 20s. This loss of testosterone occurs gradually over many years, and while it is not related to menopause, it often becomes more noticeable at that stage due to the drop off of estrogen levels.
Testosterone Therapy | Men
Testosterone levels in men decline naturally after the age of 30 and continue to decline further each year with age. Other causes of low testosterone levels in men include injury, chronic illness, alcoholism, stress, obesity, inflammatory diseases, chemotherapy and some medications.
Men with lower than normal testosterone levels may not have signs or symptoms. In others, low testosterone may cause reduced sexual desire, insomnia, depression, reduced muscle bulk and strength, difficulty concentrating and a decreased sense of well-being. Certainly some of these symptoms can be a natural part of aging, which is why it is important to have hormone levels checked.
In the United States, a male testosterone level below 300 ng/dL from a morning serum sample is generally considered low. Testosterone replacement therapy can help reverse the effects of low testosterone, and promote feelings of vitality.
In general, hormone replacement therapy is safe. It is associated with some side effects, most of which are not common, and may include: acne or oily skin, mild fluid retention, stimulation of prostate tissue, breast enlargement, worsening of sleep apnea or decreased testicular size.
For this reason, testosterone therapy should only be used for those with lower than normal testosterone. Treating normal aging with testosterone therapy remains controversial. With any hormone treatment, the risks of treatment should be weighed against the potential benefits and the symptoms of the deficiency.
Testosterone Therapy | Women
Many studies have concluded that testosterone supplementation can significantly benefit postmenopausal women who suffer from low libidos and sexual dysfunction. Restoring testosterone in postmenopausal women has also been shown to improve mood and well-being, treat certain kinds of depression and fatigue, and treat and prevent the loss of bone density and muscle mass.
It should be noted that testosterone replacement is unadvised in women with breast or uterine cancer, or those at risk for cardiovascular disease or liver disease.
At Cosmetique , we look forward to answering any questions you might have regarding testosterone and hormone replacement therapy. We offer blood testing for hormone levels and personalized hormone replacement strategies. Our on-staff physician will help create the best treatment plan individualized for your needs. To find out more, please call us at (310) 837-5555.