Testosterone is a naturally occurring androgen hormone. It is present in both males and females. Males have a much higher level than do women. It is made in the testes, ovaries, and a small amount in the adrenal glands. The hypothalamus and pituitary gland in the brain regulate its release in the body. Some health conditions make taking testosterone supplements necessary.
Some health problems can cause abnormally high levels. These are often of serious nature, such as cancers. Levels may also become decreased. This is also a problem, but not quite as alarming. Low levels most often respond favorably to treatment. Treatment regimens are given as oral medications, subcutaneous pellets, or topical gels or patches.
Low levels can occur with aging. Some researchers, however, say this is not a natural occurrence. They believe that a declining health status causes the decrease in production. Failure of the male testicles to descend during infancy may cause less to be produced. Injuries to the scrotum is another reason for decreased production. Cancer treatments of radiation or chemotherapy, are other causes. Mumps occurring during puberty or adulthood are causes. Chromosome abnormalities, and use of steroids in body building, are other reasons levels may be less than normal.
Normal range for men is many times higher than for women. Lab values vary, depending on each laboratory. When low values are problematic, treatment is required. Administration is by muscular injections, oral medications, topical gels or patches, or subcutaneous pellets. Medical prescription and administration is required.
Therapeutic results are frequent in treatment of deficiencies. Physical strength and energy levels increase. Psychologically, depression lifts, allowing mood improvement to occur. A renewed interest in life has been reported after treatment was received. Osteoporosis is reversed as bone density increases. Cardiovascular benefits decrease the chances of heart attacks.
As with most therapies, side effects are possible. Oily skin, acne, weight gain, and hair loss or overgrowth may occur. Preexisting cancers may increase in size. In men, prostate antigen level(PSA) should be monitored closely during and shortly after therapy.
Doctors recommend yearly physical exams for everyone. Between check ups, unusual symptoms should be brought to the doctor’s attention. Blood lab work can reveal if abnormal values are present. A medical professional will know if testosterone supplements are needed. Prescribed medications should be taken as directed. All side effects should be reported.