Submitted by Robert Donnell, RPh, Vital Care Compounder
We call the change of life in men andropause. Although a new word to some, we hear it daily in our compounding-only pharmacy.
Menopause is when the female hormones begin to decline and symptoms such as hot flashes, anxiety, rage, anger, and many more may occur.
Female symptoms begin to occur almost at once about middle age. But the decline is really slow in men—only about a two percent decline per year. So, you see men that once enjoyed sports, fishing, and hunting instead spending most of their time on the couch. It does not have to be that way. Read on…
Decreased libido, joint stiffness, muscle pain, fatigue, and mood changes are just a few of the symptoms. Since the change comes on so gradually, men just become accustomed to the fact that they are getting old.
At about age 50, roughly half of all men whose testosterone levels were checked were hypogonadal. This means the testes, the male sexual organs, are not producing hormones at optimum levels. As age increases, the production rate of the testes continues to go down, so by the age of 70 almost every male has testosterone levels that are well below normal. So, andropause can be defined as a state of testosterone deficiency.
Men tell me they hate to shave with their shirts off. They see what used to be firm shoulders and abdomen are now decreased to low muscle mass in the shoulders and lots of extra weight around the waist. Just look around—these patients are everywhere. You are not alone.
Part of a man’s self-worth is his manliness. Bravado, high libido, pumped-up muscles, and an eagerness to try new things are just part of what men want to have. If testosterone supplementation only improved this area of a man’s life it would be well worth the investment. But read on…
Very new research has proven testosterone therapy has a wonderful benefit for heart health. Some researchers even link low testosterone levels to hypertension, high cholesterol, and vascular stiffness (strokes). Many studies indicate that HDL cholesterol is improved by testosterone therapy. Because testosterone increases coronary artery dilatation, many suspect this may be the reason for reductions in heart attacks.
Testosterone also improves blood sugar levels in diabetics. Even in men that did not have a lowered blood sugar level while on testosterone therapy, the bad effects of the disease were slowed. Brain health has improved in patients that are on testosterone due to a reduction in beta-amyloid precursor proteins. These proteins are found in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.
Age is not the only reason testosterone levels fall. Too much estrogen from foods, chemicals, and the environment can cause testosterone levels to drop. That's the reason we suggest men do not drink soymilk or eat health foods that contain soy. Certain prescription drugs such as blood pressure medications, cimetidine, Ketoconazole, and cortisones, as well as drug overuse can also cause problems.
Before we suggest testosterone therapy for anyone, we send them to their physician for blood levels, a physical exam, and other possible tests. We want to know they are healthy. If testosterone therapy is indicated then some of these dosage forms may be beneficial:
- Topical daily testosterone dosage is by far the most popular because it is easy and keeps testosterone levels on a steady rate.
- Testosterone injections are usually given deep into the muscle on a weekly or biweekly basis. This is the least expensive method and testosterone levels can be picked up easily in the lab.
- Testosterone pellets are implanted by the physician every 90 to 120 days and yield a very steady testosterone level.
We have used many other methods but the ones above are by far the most popular. We usually suggest patients consider a supplement to keep the prostate healthy and some chrysin, which may prevent the conversion of testosterone to estrogen. This happens in a very small percent of our patients.
So, improve your quality of life, see your physician, or see us with any questions that you may have.
Our pharmaceutical grade supplements help countless numbers of people on a daily basis to improve their therapy outcomes and, ultimately, their quality of life. Vital Care Compounder is located at 115 South 40th Ave. Hattiesburg, MS. For more information call 601-261-0503 or visit www.vitalcarecompounder.com
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