What’s going around — low testosterone

Posted by Dr. Michael White, Updated on December 30th, 2017

Testosterone is considered the male sex hormone, although women do require trace amounts. It is produced in the testicles or gonads and is responsible for masculine development, muscle building, and virility. Levels normally decline about one percent annually after age 30. Testosterone is the steroid banned in most sports because of its dramatic effect on muscle mass and performance. The potential for excessive use and abuse of testosterone supplements is significant. Nevertheless, a wave of new supplements have recently hit the market.

Signs and Symptoms: Fatigue, depression, and low sex drive are common features of testosterone deficiency.

What to do: See your doctor. Typical symptoms may be caused by many other factors that must be evaluated. Blood tests can determine if your level is appropriate for your gender and age. Testosterone supplements are applied topically or injected. Doctors typically dont prescribe oral supplements due to concerns about abuse, potential for liver damage, and questions about their effectiveness.

Thought for the day: If it seems like all of your energy is gone, you may need to check your testosterone.

Whats Going Around is contributed by family practitioner Dr. Kyle Scarborough. You can reach him at Dr.KyleScarborough@gmail.com.

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What’s going around — low testosterone

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