Women are not alone in experiencing age-related symptoms of hormonal decline or imbalance. Although male menopause, called andropause, is not as widely recognized as the female menopause, the hormone-related changes experienced by many men can be just as disturbing.
Some have questioned whether ‘male menopause’ is more myth than reality. In truth, there is an undeniable hormonal decline as a man ages. However, the decline for men is a more gradual event, compared to women’s menopause, which is much more abrupt.
Many men have come to believe that male menopause will eventually lead to the end of their sexual well being. Research shows that men are by large less likely to see a doctor, especially when it involves such emotional issues. But for those who have the courage to seek care, male menopause can become one of the most passionate, rewarding, and purposeful times of a man’s life.
Are you experiencing any of these symptoms?
Complaints commonly associated with declining testosterone include:
- Decrease in libido
- Lack of energy
- Decrease in strength and/or endurance
- Loss of height
- Reduced enjoyment of life
- Erections less strong
- Deterioration in physical coordination
- Falling asleep after dinner
- Decreased work performance
- Loss of armpit and genitalia hair
- Shrinkage of testicle size
- Muscle weakness and bone loss
These symptoms no longer have to be an accepted part of the aging process. Now, for the first time, when treated, men can experience the second half of life.
Why is testosterone important?
Testosterone is definitely more than a sex hormone. Testosterone receptor sites are located in cells throughout the body, including the heart and brain. Testosterone helps with the following:
- Maintains muscle mass
- Aids in formation and stabilization of bone density
- Improves oxygen uptake throughout the body
- Regulates blood sugar control
- Maintains cholesterol
- Regulates immune system
- Improves oxygen uptake
- Improves energy
- Aids in neurological functioning, including memory and concentration
- Regulates mood and helps prevent depression
- Provides “zest for life” feelings
- Improves sexual response, including drive, performance, and sexual satisfaction
- Helps maintain heart health through stabilization of the heart muscle where many of the testosterone receptors are located
Many studies suggest that maintaining youthful levels of free testosterone can enable the aging man to restore strength, stamina, mental functioning, heart health, and sexuality, and to alleviate depression, avoid excess fat accumulation, and improve the
“outlook on life”.
Hormone Testing for Men
Although testing men’s hormone levels is still not widely practiced, testing can be key to interpreting and relieving symptoms.
Men over age 35 who are experiencing three or four of the symptoms mentioned above could benefit from having their levels of the following hormones measured:<br\>
- Complete blood count and chemistry profile
- Thyroid panel
- Free and total testosterone
- Estrodial (estrogen)
- Luteinizing hormone (optional)
- Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHGB) (optional)
Further testing can be done to measure vital nutrients and minerals that help sustain good hormone balance.
- Saw Palmetto
- Vitamin C
How are the tests interpreted?
Men must be treated on an individual basis with a comprehensive plan that considers their specific chemistry. It is of utmost importance that the levels be interpreted according to the man’s age and “optimal ranges” rather than just “normal broad parameters.”
A specially trained provider, such as those in our clinic, will note when a man’s testosterone level is at the lower end of the range. Ordinarily, if the measurement is at the lower end of normal, a man will be experiencing the effects of andropause. Raising the levels will help the patient to feel healthier and more energetic.
How is a hormone imbalance corrected?
Synthetic testosterone replacement therapies exist. However, we favor non synthetic bio-identical testosterone replacement, which is the exact molecular structure as human testosterone. This formulation can be compounded in a pharmacy to meet individual needs. The doses can be easily altered to achieve optimal results.
Other factors to take into consideration when treating a male for hormone imbalance include diet, supplements that help with the appropriate conversion and metabolization of testosterone, stress management, exercise, and lifestyle changes that will provide for
What does Ventana Wellness, PC offer men in the area of hormone testing?
At VW, medical providers have been educated in male hormone analysis and treatment. Our specially trained providers participated in a preceptor ship with Dr. Neil Rouzier, who is renowned for his work with male and female hormones and is a noted spokesperson on andropause.
We understand the physical and psychological changes that can take place during andropause, and that these changes bring about added on stress. That’s why we take special care to help our patients feel at ease when discussing their specific problems confidentially and in a comfortable professional setting.
Many of our male patients have discussed their positive outcomes with other men, who have subsequently made appointments for testing and treatment.
Because VW is a specialty practice, we work independently to provide care that is covered by most insurance plans and does not require a medical referral unless designated by your insurance company.
To make an appointment for a personal consultation regarding male hormone evaluation, please call Ventana Wellness, PC at: (877-275-6474) or 541-773-9772
Good Luck on your journey!