Low-T Syndrome: Another Word for Male Menopause

Part of the normal part of aging, male menopause is accompanied by a gradual decline in their sexuality, mood and overall energy. For most men, it arrives between the ages of 40 to 55, but for some it happens as early as 35 and as late as 65.

Not All Men Have Symptoms of Low Testosterone

"Men are more in denial about this than women," said Diamond, who has a Ph.D. in international health and a master's degree in social work. "It's taken guys a little longer for the medical evidence to come out and for doctors to find ways to treat this. But more men are getting help."

More men are also taking testosterone treatment in creams, gels or injections, Diamond said.

Dan began a holistic course of treatment that included testosterone shots and more exercise, better eating habits, herbal supplements, as well as a multivitamin and zinc.

"Those made a big difference," he said. "But exercise has been the most profound thing. Without it, the other wouldn't work. I do weights and yoga twice a week."

After Treatment, Noticing Fewer Aches and Pains

"After a year, the injections worked," Dan said. "It's not like I am doing physical feats that I was not doing before, but I was noticing a change when I would take groceries out of the car and move wood into the pile. Before, I used to groan as I did it and had more aches and pains."

Diamond, who runs the Men Alive Clinic in Willits, Calif., said all men treat menopause differently. Some are in denial and others treat it medically. But male menopause is more complex than just increasing testosterone levels -- involving hormonal fluctuation, changes in brain chemistry, interpersonal and societal changes.

"The changes have to do not only with hormones, but also sex changes that have to do with relationships and self-esteem changes. We evaluate all of these different areas," he said, "We don't just look at the test."

Unlike women's hormone replacement therapy, which uses estrogen from horses, doctors treat men with bio-identical testosterone, Diamond said.

"Biologically, it's the same and it isn't as expensive and they can manufacture it in large quantities," he said.

That's why doctors say the pharmaceutical companies are pushing treatment for low-T syndrome on television. Interestingly, direct-to-consumer advertising is only allowed in two countries in the world -- New Zealand and the United States.

"The drug companies want to figure out new ways of making money," said Dr. Robert Butler, president of the International Longevity Center in New York City and author of the landmark book, "Human Aging."

All men do not experience low testosterone levels, he said. "Not everyone goes through a decline, though there is a small category of men in their 50s and 60s, but it's a new market," he said.

Men should be monitored while taking testosterone because it can cause problems for those with heart conditions or prostate cancer that is underway, Butler said.

"I don't fault [the drug companies] for being good marketers," he said. "But I think the public should beware in terms of endangering themselves."

But Dan said he has confidence in his doctor and, oddly, the regimen has had the least impact on his sex life.

"I don't have to be fearful and anxious and I feel like I am equipped to meet whatever comes my way," he said. "When you are 18 to 20, you think you are immortal. At 30 and 40, you think you have the world by the tail."

"I began to lose that sense for no good reason," Dan said. "Now, I feel a psychological sense of completeness and robustness and maleness."

-- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8279787.
Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...