There are probably fewer things more manly than testosterone. In fact, it is the hormone that brings about those special changes during puberty.
Maybe your high school biology classes covered it, but in case that was forgotten or the teacher sped through that section, here is a refresher. Testosterone is primarily responsible for the strengthening of muscle mass, bone density and it is also the hormone that had many men’s voices cracking during high school before it was brought down to a deep bass level. It is also fundamental in the development of the male reproductive system.
Healthline reports that testosterone production is a natural process in the body and typically peaks at age 18 and can taper off after the age of 30, in most cases this is natural. However, for some unlucky gentlemen out there, the body can decrease production to the point of causing hypogonadism.
This condition has symptoms that can include erectile dysfunction, decreasing muscle mass, fatigue and decreased libido among other things. Kind of a bummer if that is going on but a recent study states that testosterone gel may be able to help.
According to researchers, this is the first time that topical testosterone treatment did benefit older men, aged over 65. University of Pennsylvania researcher, Dr. Peter Snyder said that subjects reported improvements in sexual functions and in their overall mood.
Despite this, the Food and Drug Administration has not approved the use of topical use of testosterone for age-related low testosterone. Treatment utilizing testosterone gel is typically meant for those with hypogonadism triggered by disorders of the pituitary gland, the hypothalamus and the testicles.
According to an NBC News article, there are four related studies of testosterone treatment and how it can affect the heart, bone density, mental health and anemia.
Testosterone gel may be prescribed to balance out decreasing testosterone production and it comes as a cream that is applied to the skin. Side effects of this gel can include headaches, dry or itchy skin and mood changes. More severe side effects can include shortness of breath, chest pain, vomiting and dizziness and if any of these become apparent you need to call your doctor. Women and children should avoid testosterone treatments as it can cause adverse effects. Those using testosterone gel should make sure that the treatment does not reach others in the household.
As with any medical treatment, a physician should always be consulted before beginning any regimen involving testosterone.
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