What Is Andropause?
Some men entering their 50s (or older) experience a noticeable drop in their testosterone levels—something called andropause, or more commonly: “male menopause”.
Andropause is a condition unlike female menopause in that it happens more gradually and it doesn’t affect all men—about 30% are affected by it by the time they reach their 50s. It can cause many different symptoms—not just sexual, but physical and psychological ones as well.
What Causes Andropause?
Any case of andropause is caused by one main factor: lack of testosterone. As men get older, the testes start producing less and less testosterone, causing a gradual drop in overall testosterone levels. This is caused by a decrease in the hormones that actually alert the testes to produce testosterone, as well as an increase in the amount of testosterone that’s converted into other hormones like estrogen and dihydrotestosterone.
Another factor can be due to an increase in sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG), which is a protein that testosterone clings very tightly to. It’s a protein that becomes more prevalent in men as they age.
Symptoms of Andropause
Although symptoms of andropause can vary in type and severity, the most common are:
- Problems with achieving and/or maintaining erections
- Lower sex drive
- Inability to concentrate
- Decreased motivation and energy
- Insomnia or difficulty sleeping
- Moodiness and irritability
- Lowered self-confidence
- Loss of muscle mass
- Weight gain
How Is Andropause Diagnosed?
First, a doctor will assess the person’s symptoms to see if they match with common symptoms of andropause. Then, once a blood test is taken to check their testosterone levels, a diagnosis can be made if the results are below normal.
Treatment Options for Andropause Symptoms
The first recommendation for treating symptoms of andropause is making changes to improve your lifestyle choices. This may include:
- Eating healthier foods
- Exercising more regularly
- Getting more hours of sleep each night
- Finding ways to reduce current stresses
If these are not applicable or are not currently an issue, a very effective and safe option is testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). This type of therapy does require a prescription and monitoring by a licensed physician, but if your doctor believes testosterone replacement therapy is right for you, Olympia Pharmacy offers several great treatment options, including:
- Intramuscular testosterone injections
- Transdermal cream in a convenient pump or Topi-CLICK® delivery system
- Sublingual tablets that dissolve quickly under the tongue
To learn more about Olympia Pharmacy’s testosterone replacement therapy options, fill out our testosterone therapy request form and our team will contact you shortly.