Low Testosterone

Low testosterone can diminish libido and sexual function, weaken muscles and bones and cause depression, among other problems. Also called hypogonadism or andropause, it is a common condition for men, affecting more than 5 million between the ages of 30 and 80.

We provide careful screening for the problem and the full range of treatments, helping you weigh the benefits against the risks.

Why choose Henry Ford VUI for low testosterone

We’ve successfully treated many men for low testosterone, and offer:

  • Appropriate treatment and an emphasis on safety
  • A holistic approach, with screening for other related health issues
  • Close monitoring for side effects if you opt for treatment

Low testosterone diagnosis

Low testosterone is diagnosed by evaluating your symptoms and conducting blood tests to determine the level of:

  • Free testosterone (not bound to any proteins) and total testosterone
  • Other hormones: follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH) and estradiol

Before starting testosterone replacement, our doctors also test levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) for prostate cancer and red blood cells (hematocrit). Treatment can potentially increase your red blood cell count to unhealthy levels.

Low testosterone treatment

The goal of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is to get the daily circulating levels of the hormone within the normal range. There are several possible approaches:

  • Gels (most common approach; rubbed onto shoulders or upper arms)
  • Patches
  • Pills and tablets
  • Injections
  • Implantable pellets

Our doctors can help you decide which form is right for you.

Benefits and risks of testosterone replacement

Possible benefits of testosterone replacement therapy are numerous, and include:

  • Decreased cholesterol and heart issues
  • Higher bone mineral density
  • Improved mood and cognition
  • Better sexual function
  • Increased lean body mass/decreased fat mass
  • More strength and energy

But low testosterone is a chronic condition and requires lifelong treatment. Studies have so far shown that therapy does not increase the risk for prostate cancer, but it remains a question that researchers are exploring. Known side effects of testosterone replacement include:

  • Acne
  • Male pattern baldness
  • Breast enlargement
  • Larger prostate
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Decreased sperm production

Testosterone replacement and fathering children

Your treatment options depend on whether you want to have children — any testosterone replacement will reduce sperm production and semen quality, with an absence of viable sperm possible. This side effect can linger for months or even years after stopping treatment, so speak with our doctors about your future plans.

Low testosterone symptoms

Low testosterone is associated with a number of symptoms:

  • Body hair loss (including on your face)
  • Breast enlargement (gynecomastia)
  • Decreased bone density and muscle mass
  • Lower sex drive
  • Decreased sperm counts
  • Depression
  • Hot flashes
  • Increased body fat
  • Reduced mental concentration
  • Soft and small testicles
  • Tiredness

Low testosterone causes

Studies have shown that testosterone levels decline with age. Low testosterone is also associated with certain medical conditions:

  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Obesity
  • HIV infection
  • Varicocele (Learn more about infertility)
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Narcotic and steroid use
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