TESTOSTERONE DEFICIENCY CAUSES
Testosterone Deficiency Causes in men are mostly related to low androgen production. Testosterone production in men declines naturally with age. Below we discuss Testosterone Deficiency Causes. Testosterone Deficiency (TD), known as Low T, or AD (Androgen Deficiency), may result from disease or damage to the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, or testicles that inhibits hormone secretion and testosterone production, also known as hypogonadism.
Androgen Deficiency can cause health problems. Depending on age, insufficient testosterone production can lead to muscle loss, osteoporosis and problems with bone development, underdeveloped genitalia, fertility problems, lost libido and reduced virility.
Testosterone is the androgenic hormone primarily responsible for normal growth and development of male sex and reproductive organs, including the penis, testicles, scrotum, prostate, and seminal vesicles. It facilitates the development of secondary male sex characteristics such as greater musculature, bigger bone mass, fat distribution, hair patterns, laryngeal enlargement, and vocal chord thickening. Additionally, normal testosterone levels maintain optimal energy levels, balanced mood, sperm count, fertility, drive and healthy sexual desire.
The testes produce testosterone regulated by a complex chain of hormonal signals that begins in the brain. This chain of hormone signals is called the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. The hypothalamus secretes gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) to the pituitary gland in carefully timed pulses which triggers the secretion of leutenizing hormone (LH) from the pituitary gland.
Leutenizing hormone (LH) then stimulates specialized cells in the testes called the the Leydig cells to produce testosterone. Normally, the testes produce 5-8 milligrams (mg) of testosterone daily.
Incidence and Prevalence of Androgen Deficiency in Men
Testosterone production increases rapidly at the onset of puberty and decreases rapidly after age 40 to 50 years of age. Below we discuss some of the main Testosterone Deficiency causes in Aging Men with Low T.
In fact, many men only have about 20% of their normal testosterone secretion level by age 80. Approximately 15 million men in the United States experience testosterone deficiency while only approximately 800,000 receive proper Low T Treatment.
Types and Causes of Testosterone Deficiency
Hypogonadsim is classified by the location of its cause along the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis:
- Primary Hypogonadism, disruption in the testicles
- Secondary Hypogonadism, disruption in the pituitary
- Tertiary Hypogonadism, disruption in the hypothalamus
Disease, injury, surgery, and drug side effects can cause hypogonadism and testosterone deficiency. Hypogonadism is congenital or acquired, depending on the nature of the underlying condition.
Testosterone Deficiency Causes that are Congenital include the following:
- Anorchia (vanishing testes syndrome; causing primary hypogonadism)
- Cryptorchidism (failure of testicles to descend into scrotum; causing primary hypogonadism)
- Hormonal deficiency (e.g., deficiency of leutenizing hormone releasing hormone; causing secondary or tertiary hypogonadism)
- Kallmann syndrome (insufficient hypothalamic GnRH production; causing tertiary hypogonadism)
- Klinefelter syndrome (underdeveloped testicles; causing primary hypogonadism
Acquired Androgen Deficiency causes include the following:
- Damage occurring during surgery involving the pituitary gland, hypothalamus, or testes
- Glandular malformation
- Head trauma (affecting the hypothalamus)
- Infection (e.g., meningitis, syphilis, mumps)
- Isolated LH deficiency (e.g., fertile eunuch syndrome)
- Testicular trauma
- Tumors (of the pituitary gland, hypothalamus, or testicles)
Signs and Symptoms of Low T
Low T Symptoms help Testosterone Specialists and Urologists diagnose Andopause or Hypogonadism. Signs depend on the age of onset and the duration of hormonal deficiency. Congenital hypogonadism is generally characterized by underdeveloped genitalia (testes that do not descend into the scrotum) and, occasionally, undeterminable genitalia. T
The development of hypogonadism near puberty can result in gynecomastia enlargement of male breast tissue, sparse or absent pubic and body hair, and underdeveloped penis, testes, and muscle. Adult men may experience diminished libido, erectile dysfunction, muscle weakness, loss of body hair, depression, and other mood disorders.
Complications Caused by Low Testosterone Levels in Men
Testosterone deficiency has been linked to muscle weakness and osteoporosis. In one study, proximal and distal muscle weakness was detected in 68% of men with primary or secondary hypogonadism.
Low T levels contribute to Osteoporosis and bone deterioration. Spinal, trabecular, and radial cortical bone density may also be significantly reduced in testosterone-deficient men. Thirty percent of men with spinal osteoporosis have long-standing testosterone deficiency, and one-third of men have subnormal bone density that puts them at risk for fracture.
How important is Testosterone for men’s health?
Testosterone is a hormone produced by the testicles and is responsible for the proper development of male sexual characteristics. Testosterone is also important for maintaining muscle bulk, adequate levels of red blood cells, bone growth, a sense of well-being, and sexual function.