Low Testosterone (cont.)
Benjamin Wedro, MD, FACEP, FAAEM
Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
Ruchi Mathur, MD, FRCP(C)
Ruchi Mathur, MD, FRCP(C) is an Attending Physician with the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism and Associate Director of Clinical Research, Recruitment and Phenotyping with the Center for Androgen Related Disorders, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
In this Article
- Low testosterone facts
- What is testosterone?
- What is low testosterone?
- What are the causes of low testosterone?
- What are the symptoms of low testosterone?
- When should I seek medical care for low testosterone?
- How is low testosterone diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for low testosterone?
- What are the complications of low testosterone?
- Can low testosterone be prevented?
- What is the outlook for a patient with low testosterone?
- Low Testosterone (Low T) - Slideshow
- Take the Low Testosterone (Low T) Quiz
- Erectile Dysfunction (Impotence) - Slideshow
- Find a local Endocrinologist in your town
What are the complications of low testosterone?
Complications of low testosterone levels depend upon when in life the situation occurs. Low testosterone levels in infants can lead to poor development of sexual organs. Near puberty, it can lead to failure of development of secondary sexual characteristics. In adulthood, osteoporosis, loss of muscle mass, and decreased sexual function including erectile dysfunction and decreased libido may occur.
Can low testosterone be prevented?
Low testosterone is due to the failure of at least one part of the hypothalamus-pituitary- gonadal axis. Many illnesses and diseases that affect these organs are inherited and cannot be prevented. Other causes are unavoidable consequences such as cancer therapy and infection. However, some causes are preventable including obesity and drug abuse.
What is the outlook (prognosis) for a patient with low testosterone?
The ability to treat the condition depends upon recognizing symptoms and seeking medical care. Once the cause for the low testosterone levels is diagnosed, testosterone replacement therapy may be helpful in reversing the symptoms related to those low levels.
Maintaining adequate testosterone levels within the body may minimize future risk of muscle and bone loss.
Emmelot-Vonk MH, et al. Effect of Testosterone Supplementation on Functional Mobility, Cognition, and Other Parameters in Older Men A Randomized Controlled Trial. JAMA 2008. 299:1 39-52.
Cunningham GR, Toma SM. Why Is Androgen Replacement in Males Controversial? JCEM. 2011. 96 (1): 38
Viewers share their comments
Find out what women really need.