Testosterone is an important male sex hormone produced in the testicles. Having optimum levels of testosterone is crucial for normal male sexual development and functions.
When boys hit puberty during their teen years, it is testosterone that helps them develop male features like body and facial hair, deeper voice, and muscle strength. Testosterone is needed to produce sperm. As men age, testosterone levels gradually starts to drop, and therefore older men have low blood T-levels.
Some men can experience low testosterone levels, which is a medical condition termed Testosterone Deficiency Syndrome (TD) or Low Testosterone (Low-T). It is called deficiency because the body does not produce enough required substance. Syndrome implies to a group of symptoms, which point toward a disease or health condition.
LOW TESTOSTERONE CAUSES
Some people can be born with conditions that can lead to Low-T. Few conditions include Klinefelter syndrome, Noonan syndrome, Ambiguous genitalia, and etc.
Some men can also develop low testosterone deficiency due to the following causes:
- Damage to testicles caused by an accident
- Removal of testicles due to cancer
- Radiation or chemotherapy
- Diseases pertaining to pituitary gland leading to hormone deficiency
- Autoimmune diseases
- Multiple sclerosis
When your body starts producing low testosterone, the blood levels of testosterone begins to drop. Men who develop testosterone deficiency have low testosterone levels due to the following causes:
- Increasing age
- Metabolic syndromes such as high blood pressure, high blood sugar, unhealthy cholesterol levels, and belly fat
- Certain medications prescribed to treat depression
Men suffering from certain health problems such as HIV and AIDS also tend to have low testosterone.
SYMPTOMS OF LOW TESTOSTERONE
Low testosterone can be characterized by its many signs and symptoms. Some symptoms can be quite closely related to the condition itself. With the help of a doctor, you can make sense of your own situation.
Following are the most specific signs and symptoms of low testosterone levels:
- Decreased sex drive
- Erectile dysfunction
- Loss of body hair
- Loss of beard growth
- Losing muscle mass
- Prolonged periods of fatigue
- Symptoms related to depression
Here are the non-specific signs of low-testosterone levels:
- Low energy levels, endurance and physical strength
- Memory loss
- Difficulty in finding words when speaking
- Poor focus
- Not performing well at work