Testosterone therapy: Key to male vitality? – Mayo Clinic

Recommended by Dr. Michael White, Updated on October 29th, 2020
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Testosterone therapy: Key to male vitality? Considering testosterone therapy to help you feel younger and more vigorous as you age? Know the risks before you make your decision. By Mayo Clinic Staff

The possibilities of testosterone therapy are enticing increase your muscle mass, sharpen your memory and concentration, boost your libido, and improve your energy level. As you get older, testosterone therapy may sound like the ultimate anti-aging formula. Yet the health benefits of testosterone therapy for age-related decline in testosterone aren't as clear as they may seem. Find out what's known and not known about testosterone therapy for normal aging.

Testosterone is a hormone produced primarily in the testicles. Testosterone helps maintain men's:

Hypogonadism is a disease in which the body is unable to produce normal amounts of testosterone due to a problem with the testicles or with the pituitary gland that controls the testicles. Testosterone replacement therapy can improve the signs and symptoms of low testosterone in these men. Doctors may prescribe testosterone as injections, pellets, patches or gels.

Testosterone peaks during adolescence and early adulthood. As you get older, your testosterone level gradually declines typically about 1 percent a year after age 30. It is important to determine in older men if a low testosterone level is simply due to the decline of normal aging or if it is due to a disease (hypogonadism).

Not necessarily. Men can experience many signs and symptoms as they age, and some may occur as a result of lower testosterone levels and can include:

It's important to note that some of these signs and symptoms are a normal part of aging. Others can be caused by various underlying factors, including medication side effects, thyroid problems, depression and excessive alcohol use. A blood test is the only way to diagnose a low testosterone level.

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