Testosterone is the hormone that is most associated with masculinity. Everything from the deepening of the voice to muscles is often related to testosterone. As men age, testosterone levels tend to drop, causing a long list of symptoms from decreased energy to decreased sexual function to weight gain and muscle loss. Health care providers at Liondale Medical specialize in men’s health in New York, restoring patients’ testosterone levels.
Everything you need to know about testosterone
Many of your bodily functions, from metabolism to growth, are controlled by chemicals produced and distributed by your body’s endocrine system. These chemicals are called hormones. In total, there are about fifty different hormones that travel through your bloodstream and affect your development.
Testosterone production is controlled by the brain’s hypothalamus and pituitary glands, determining how much testosterone your testis will produce. The ovaries and adrenal glands also produce small quantities of testosterone.
Before birth, testosterone is responsible for regulating sex differentiation and the development of sex organs. After birth, testosterone levels fall and rise during growth and puberty, assisting in many of the changes in the growth of facial and body hair, deepening of the voice, growth spurt, and increased muscle mass.
Testosterone also plays a role in maintaining a sex drive, sperm production, and muscle and bone maintenance throughout adulthood. This hormone is also thought to impact the function of the ovaries, which is an organ that requires a balance between testosterone and estrogen. This hormone plays a lot of vital roles in the body.
What happens if you have too much or too little testosterone?
In children, too much testosterone can lead to abnormally early puberty, occurring before the age of eight or nine, while too little can result in the underdevelopment of sexual organs during fetal development or little to no changes during puberty.
In adults, the natural production of excess testosterone is rare. Higher than normal testosterone levels are usually associated with the consumption of manufactured substances like steroids that increase testosterone levels found to lower sperm count, increase risk of heart attacks, cause liver disease and cause leg and foot swelling. In women, excess testosterone production can be a symptom of polycystic ovary syndrome, which can cause irregular periods leading to cysts and infertility.
Low levels of testosterone, also known as hypogonadism, can cause many issues, including muscle and body hair reduction, mood swings, increased body fat, reduced sex drive impotence, erectile dysfunction, osteoporosis, and memory and cognitive complications.
Treatment of low testosterone in men
Testosterone deficiency will affect all parts of the male body. Testosterone replacement therapy is the administration of artificial testosterone to raise this hormone level in your blood back to normal and relieve hypogonadism symptoms. You can take testosterone therapy via injections, patches, gels, or tablets form. Your doctor will administer one every two to three weeks into your buttocks muscles if you have injections. A testosterone skin patch is usually placed on your arm, back, abdomen, or upper buttocks and you will be required to change the patch daily. When using the gel, you will apply it daily to the skin on your shoulder, upper arm, or abdomen. One testosterone tablet is usually placed on your gum line twice a day.
To learn more about testosterone therapy, contact Lindale Medical by phone or request an appointment online today.