What Causes Low Testosterone

Low testosterone commonly affects between four to five million men in the United States. Testosterone is an essential hormone present in the body; however it begins to decrease on the yearly bases once you turn 30. While some decrease is normal, in some men the decrease can be significant. In fact, between 19 and 39 percent of men over the age of 30 suffer from low testosterone levels. Though this affects mainly men over the age of 30, it can also be common in young adults and teens.

Older men who have low testosterone have begun to sought testosterone replacement therapy as an option for treatment. This treatment option covers problems such as poor muscle mass, low energy, and low libido.

Primary Hypogonadism

One of the most common causes of hypogonadism is underactive testes. When testes are underactive, they do not produce the proper levels of testosterone that are necessary for growth and health. This condition of underactive testes can be brought on by a trait that was inherited or can be acquired as a result of an illness or accident.

Inherited conditions might include: undescended testicles which is when the testicles do not descend from the abdomen prior to birth, Klinefelterís syndrome which is a condition where a man is born with three chromosomes, heochromatosis is when too much iron is in the blood that causes testicular failure or pituitary damage.

Other types of testicle damage that can lead to hypogonadism includes: physical injuries to the testicles, mumps, cancer treatement such as chemotherapy or radiation.

Secondary Hypogandism

Secondary hypogandism is typically the result of damage to the pituitary gland or hypothalamus which are parts of the brain that control the production of hormones. This can also be caused through inherited conditions or other factors which you will find listed below:

Inherited or disease conditions that can lead to secondary hypogandism include: pituitary disorders which are brought on by drugs, kidney failure, or small tumors, Kallamann syndrome which is a condition that results in abnormal function of the hypothalamus, inflammatory diseases such as tuberculosis, sarcoidosis, and histicytosis that impact the hypothalamus, and pituitary glands, HIV/AIDS which both affect the testes and hypothalamus.

Other circumstances that can lead to secondary hypogonadism include: aging, as it affects the response and production of hormones in the body, obesity which causes high levels of body fat to affect the production and response of hormones, medications such as opioid pain medications and steroids.

You could be affected by either primary or secondary hypogandism or it could be a mixed scenario. Mixed hypogandism is likely more common as men age as well as those who may have undergone glucocorticoid therapy. Those affected with sickle cell, thalassemia, or alcoholosim are also at a higher risk.

Things You Can Do

If you believe that you are experiencing symptoms of low testosterone there are some things that you can change within your lifestyle that will help to ease the symptoms you feel. The first step is to reduce the amount of body fat you have present by exercising and eating right. If problems persist always remember to consult a medical professional for the best treatment options available.

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