Hypogonadism is the medical term for a reduction in the hormonal activity of the testes in men ( and the ovaries in women), it generally results in reduced sex hormone levels such as testosterone.
It can also have detrimental effects in the production of other hormones including progesterone, DHEA, activin and inhibin. It can also reduce the production of healthy sperm in men and ovulation in women.
Hypogonadism can usually be identified by a blood test, it is best to have such test in the morning as and when the levels are generally at their highest.
Healthy levels of total testosterone are generally considered between 300 ng/dl at its lowest and 1000ng/dl at the maximum.
Tests may also be carried out to check the levels of SHBG levels, this is the protein that carries testosterone around the bloodstream.. Even if the testosterone levels are at the lower end of the scale, if the SHBG levels are of sufficient amounts, the man should not experience any real drop in libido.
Treatments for low testosterone caused by hypogonadism are usually recommended when levels are found to be between 230 ng/dl and 350 ng/dl
Treatment may even be required in younger man even if the reading is found to be in the lower end of the ‘normal’ range. As an example a 27 year old man who had a reading of 380ng/dl would be considered to be i the lower regions of ‘normal, but could well be experiencing symptoms associated with hypogonadism, these can include:
- Lack Of Energy
- Poor Sleep Quality
- Reduced Libido And Sexual Response
- Reduced Muscle Tone
- Increased Body Fat
Treatment options can include the use of transdermal patches, injections ( in extreme cases) and also the use of testosterone boosting supplements. Oral medications that deliver actual testosterone into the body are now no longer used in most countries as this method has been found to cause liver damage.
It can take between 2 and 3 months to reverse the effects of hypogonadism.
Natural Testosterone boosting supplements can be very effective in helping to promote the renewed production of testosterone in the body without the risk of any side effects associated with direct hormonal replacement.
Testosterone And Longevity
It has been thought that sufferers of low testosterone aged over 50 have a generally reduced life expectancy, an 18 year study carried out by the Endocrine Society looked at the causes of death of 800 men aged between 51 and 91 years old, it was found that a third of these men had lower than average levels of testosterone. the study concluded that men with low testosterone levels that were left unchecked had a 33% increased chance of death within 18 years, when compared to men with high or normal testosterone levels.