Low Testosterone | Symptoms, Causes, Treatments

Recommended by Dr. Michael White, Updated on October 25th, 2018

A testosterone test measures the amount of testosterone in the blood. It is also called a serum testosterone test. Testosterone (sometimes referred to simply as T) is a hormone produced by both males and females. It plays a role in puberty and fertility. It also affects sexual desire.

In males, most T is produced in the testes. In females, most is produced in the ovaries. Males have higher levels than females, and it is thought to have a significant influence in the development of many particular male traits: increased muscle bulk, higher bone mass, physical strength, and body hair, amongst others. However, the hormone plays an important role in women as well.

This test is ordered for different reasons in males and females.

One common reason to order this test is either early or delayed puberty. The test may also be ordered if low hormone levels are suspected. Low levels are also known as hypogonadism.

Symptoms of hypogonadism include:

Causes of low T include:

A number of genetic diseases can also affect T levels, including:

High T levels may also be problematic. They may be caused by:

In females, testing is usually for high T levels. This may cause:

High T may be caused by:

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Low Testosterone | Symptoms, Causes, Treatments

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