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The Male Menopause

Male menopause affects some older men

Male menopause refers to an age-related decline in testosterone levels in men. However, it is a misleading term because it suggests that men experience the same as women

Does Male Menopause really exist or is it all in our mind…?

Male menopause is a term used to refer to an age-related decline in testosterone levels in men. However, male menopause is a misleading description because it suggests that men experience the same as women. Women experience a dramatic fall in oestrogen levels during the menopause. In the case of men, testosterone levels fall much less and far more slowly. Also the decline may not affect all men.

When testosterone levels fall, men may experience low energy, fatigue, poor concentration or memory, mood changes, loss of muscle strength and low sex drive.There is treatment for the condition and a blood test can determine whether there is a fall in hormone levels. But other tests may also be needed, either to rule out other medical conditions or to identify causes (other than age) of the low testosterone level.

There are a number of illnesses common in older men that can cause a drop in testosterone levels. Illnesses that may cause either a drop in testosterone levels or symptoms similar to testosterone (androgen) deficiency include:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Some lung diseases
  • Depression
  • Obesity
  • Alcohol misuse

Testosterone treatment will not normally be recommended for these conditions. In the case of obesity it may be necessary to undergo a complete lifestyle change to remedy the situation; obese men with low testosterone levels should consult their doctor for a complete review of their health, lifestyle and physical activity levels.

Treatment for men with testosterone deficiency may take the form of: implants, patches, capsules, creams or gels but it is still under discussion as to whether these treatments are truly effective.

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