Androgen and Testosterone Therapy for Men and Women
ANDROGENS (testosterone and its analogues) are one of the three classes of sex hormones found in men and women. Although generally associated with masculinity, androgens are as necessary for normal female function as for males; the difference is one of degree, in that men require 10-20 as much testosterone as women.
In women, the main role of androgens is to stimulate the libido and thus allow for sexual function and reproduction. Testosterone levels in women increase on the day of ovulation, thus stimulating sexual relations and promoting pregnancy.
In men, testosterone supports sexual performance, mood and well-being, physical strength and aggressiveness.
Deficiencies of testosterone in both sexes results in lowered libido and often a feeling of malaise and indifference. Men who suffer low testosterone production in mid life are especially prone to loss of erections and of sexual desire and fantasy, weakness and weight gain.
I am happy to treat men and women with androgen deficiency, using a variety of commercial and compounded medicines. Effective treatment first requires an accurate diagnosis, we must know if the problem arises from the brain, the thyroid, the pituitary or the reproductive glands themselves. After a simple blood evaluation, therapy can be directed to the source of the problem.
One can have too much testosterone. In women, this causes acne, abnormal hair growth and menstrual irregularity. Such women often have “PCO”, which you can read about on another page.
A problem I see often is the man who has been harmed by anabolic steroid use, usually taken to promote muscle mass and strength. “Anabolic steroid” is just another name for androgens; the varieties that are abused are stronger and longer acting than actual testosterone, so they quickly turn off the testes. Athletes who use these drugs illicitly risk such side effects as impotence, loss of sperm production, excess growth of the prostate, mood and behavioral changes and acne.
Men who wish to come off anabolics should consult a reproductive endocrine specialist. Stopping cold turkey is very difficult and often results in months of gonadal failure until the system restores itself; a tapered withdrawal will do no better. These men do well with therapy intended to restore normal testicular function as the anabolics are stopped.
Over the years I have treated many women and men with testosterone deficiency. I also am happy to help men who wish to stop abusing anabolics, whether or not they intend to father children.