Hypogonadism, or low testosterone, may be experienced by up to 13 million men in the United States. While some men may seek medical assistance for this condition, recent figures show that 90% of men do not.
How to Know You Have Low Testosterone
There are a variety of symptoms that may point to low testosterone:
- Hair loss
- Muscle loss
- Weight gain
The Mayo Clinic reports that these may also be signs that point to low testosterone:
- Breast tissue development
- Decreased beard and body hair growth
- Difficulty concentrating
- Erectile dysfunction
- Hot flashes
- Mental and emotional changes
- Reduced sex drive
Changes in Testosterone Levels
Men’s testosterone levels will fluctuate throughout the day. A normal level of testosterone is between 300 and 1,200 nanograms per deciliter.
Testosterone levels vary with men, and they tend to peak between the ages of 20 and 30, By the time they are 30, however, men’s testosterone levels will usually decrease by 1% every year. Once they’re over 45, roughly 4 out of every 10 men will experience low testosterone.
Low Testosterone Levels and Cancer
When men survive testicular cancer, they tend to have lower testosterone levels. A recent study showed that this was the case with 38% of the testicular cancer survivors.
Low Testosterone and Obesity
Obesity can have an impact on testosterone levels. Studies have shown that obese men are at a higher risk for low testosterone. The results of these studies indicate that low testosterone is 2.4 times higher when men are obese.
Low Testosterone and Depression
The Endocrine Journal published research that revealed a correlation between low testosterone and depression. According to the research, 23% of the young men that had been recently diagnosed with low testosterone met depression criteria. When compared with their counterparts that had normal hormone levels, just 5% met the criteria for depression.
Low Testosterone Treatment Options
How to know you have low testosterone is best determined by a physician. If you have any of the signs listed above, it’s important to seek medical attention. There are treatment options available for this condition, such as testosterone replacement therapy. Your physician will be able to determine which type of treatment protocol is indicated for you.