Male hypogonadism is a health condition in which the body does not produce sufficient hormones that play a key role in male growth and development during puberty or enough sperm or both. This impaired function of the testicles causes a partial or total breakdown of cross-communication among the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and testicles. Under this condition testicle (gonads) does not produce enough testosterone.
Male hypogonadism is usually defined as the gonads failure resulting in an impaired steroid hormone production and deficient gamers output. An individual can be born with make hypogonadism or it can develop later in life, often as a result of injury or infection.
There are two types of hypogonadism: Primary and Secondary (Central)
- Primary hypogonadism means that there are not enough sex hormones in the body due to malfunctioning of the gonads (testicles)–though the gonads are still receiving the massage to produce hormones from the brain, they are unable to do so.
- Secondary (central) hypogonadism is a condition where the problem comes from the brain. The hypothalamus hormone and pituitary gland, which controls the gonads (testicles) are located in the brain and help regulate various body functions, including the production of sex hormones.
The primary hypogonadism is caused by testicular failure originating from a problem in the testicles. In the case of secondary hypogonadism, the problem comes from the hypothalamus or the pituitary gland to produce follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH), and luteinizing hormones then signals the testicles to produce testosterone, if hindered or impaired will affect testosterone production resulting in lower than enough in the bloodstream.
Either type of hypogonadism can be caused by an inherited trait or acquired later in life as a result of an injury or an infection.
In primary hypogonadism, common cause includes:
This condition is when an extra copy of the X chromosome is added to the karyotype. And when this occurs, it can cause abnormal development of the testicles, which in turn results in lower production of testosterone.
- Undescended Testicles.
Before birth, the testicles develop inside the abdomen and normally move down into their permanent place in the scrotum. But sometimes, one or both testicles do not descend at birth.
This condition may correct itself within the first few years after delivery without treatment. If not corrected in early childhood, it may lead to malfunction of the testicle and consequently reduced testosterone production.
Very high iron levels in the blood can cause testicular failure or pituitary gland dysfunction and reduce testosterone production.
- Testicle Damage
Testicles are prone to injury because they are outside the abdomen. Testicle damage can cause hypogonadism because of the impairment of testosterone production.
- Mump Orchitis
A mumps infection involving testicles I curing during adolescence or adulthood can cause damage thereby affecting testosterone production.
- Cancer Treatment
Chemotherapy or radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer can interfere with sperm and testosterone production. Though the effect oftentimes is temporary, permanent infertility may occur.
In secondary hypogonadism, some conditions that can cause secondary hypogonadism are:
- Kallmann’s Syndrome
This is the abnormal development of the brain section that controls the recreation of pituitary hormones. This affects the process of testosterone production.
- Pituitary Disorder
Any abnormality in the pituitary gland can impair hormonal release from the gland to the testicles, affecting normal testosterone production. Pituitary tumors or tumors near the pituitary gland can cause hypogonadism.
- Inflammatory Diseases
Sarcoidosis, histiocytosis, and tuberculosis involve the hypothalamus and pituitary gland, as such can affect testosterone production.
Overweight at any age might be linked to hypogonadism.
This can lower levels of testosterone by affecting the hypothalamus, the pituitary, and the gonads.
Aging results in a slow, progressive reduction in testosterone production. The rate varies in each individual.
Certain drugs–anesthesia, some hormonal drugs can affect testosterone production.
Hypogonadism is a condition that can begin during fetal development in the womb, before puberty, or during adulthood. Signs and symptoms, therefore, depends on the time of development.
- Fetal Stage
If enough testosterone was not produced during fetal development, impaired growth of the external sex organs may occur. The time of development of hypogonadism and how much testosterone is present can be caused genetically.
A male child is born with:
- Female genitals
- Ambiguous genitals (genitals that are not clearly male or female)
- Underdeveloped male genitals.
Delayed puberty or incomplete or lack of normal development as a result of make hypogonadism can hamper:
- Development of muscle made
- Deepening of voice
- Growth of facial and body hair
- Penis and testicle development.
Also, it can cause:
- Excessive growth of arms and legs
- Development of breast tissue
Early signs and symptoms might include:
- Reduced sex drive/libido
- Decreased energy
- Erectile dysfunctional
- Reduced muscular mass
- Development of breast tissue
- Reduced hair growth on face and body
- Emotional and mental changes
- Lack of concentration
The following can be done to diagnose hypogonadism disorder:
- Doctor’s assessment of your medical history and a physical examination.
Laboratory tests such as:
- Blood test; to know testosterone level.
- Hormonal testing
- Semen analysis.
- Pituitary imaging; through the use of MRI, CT scans, X-rays, etc.
- Genetic study; to examine your DNA
- Testicular biopsy; to examine the testicular tissue.
The treatment measure for controlling and correcting hypogonadism is mainly “testosterone therapy”. This therapy is given according to the age and development stage of the male.
Treatment for delayed liberty in boys depends on the reasons for its cause.
3 to 6 months of testosterone medication given as injection can stimulate puberty and secondary sex characteristics development including:
- Beard and pubic hair growth
- Growth of the penis
- Increased muscular mass.
For Adult Men,
The most recommended hypogonadism treatment for older men is testosterone replacement to return testosterone levels to normal. The Endocrine Society recommends that your doctor monitors you for treatment effectiveness and side effects several times during your first year of treatment and yearly after that.
There are many forms of testosterone administrations. They include:
- Oral; which is Testosterone Undecanvate (Jatenzo)
Gel & Ointments such as:
- Those rubbed into the skin of the upper arm and shoulder; Androgel, Western, Vogelxo
- Those applied to the front and inner thigh; Fortesta.
After application, do not shower or bathe for several hours to be sure that it has absorbed into your skin. Avoid skin-to-skin contact until the gel is completely dry.
Injection such as:
- Those given in a muscle or under the skin; Testosterone cypionate (Depo-testosterone), Testosterone enanthate.
- Those given by deep intramuscular injections, typically every 10 weeks under a doctor’s supervision; Testosterone undecanoate (Aveed)
- Patch; a patch containing testosterone, Androderm, applied each night to your thighs or torso.
- Nasal; through a testosterone gel, Natesto, pumped into the nostrils. This is applied twice in each nostril, three times a day.
- Gum and Cheek (Buccal Cavity); through a testosterone replacement substance, dropped above your top teeth where your gum meets your upper lip (buccal cavity). Used 3 times a day.
- Implantable Pellets; through a testosterone-contained pellet, Testopel, surgically implanted under the skin every 3 to 6 months.
Risk Of Testosterone Therapy
Some risks of testosterone therapy include:
- Increase the production of red blood cells.
- Enlarged breasts
- Sleeping problems
- AcneProstatee enlargement
- Low sperm production.
Treatment Of Infertility Due To Hypogonadism
The pituitary problem is the cause of infertility, pituitary hormones can be administered to stimulate sperm production and restore fertility. For a man with hypogonadism, assisted reproductive technologies (ART) may be helpful since there is always no effective treatment to restore fertility.
Can hypogonadism be cured?
In most cases, hypogonadism can be treated effectively with hormonal replacement therapy (HRT), by taking medications containing the hormones that your body is lacking.
Testosterone, progesterone, or pituitary hormones can replace the ones the body no longer produces and by doing so, the symptoms may be reduced or corrected.
Does masturbating reduce testosterone?
Many people believe that masturbation affects a man’s testosterone levels but this is not necessarily true. Masturbation does not seem to have any long-lasting effect on testosterone level, although it may have a short-term effect on the level of the hormone.
What is the best testosterone boosters?
The 8 best supplements to boost testosterone levels include:
- D-Aspartic Acid; a natural amino acid that can boost low T levels.
- Vitamin D; a fat-soluble vitamin.
- Tribulus Terrestris
- Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)
Can low testosterone cause death?
One study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism also linked low testosterone to a higher risk of death from heart disease and other causes.
What happens if a guy has low testosterone?
Decreased testosterone can lead to physical changes including the following:
- Increased body fat.
- Decreased strength/mass of muscles.
- Fragile bones
- Low libido
- Reduced hair growth on the face and body.
- Emotional and mental changes
- Lack of concentration.