Men's health

Low testosterone levels: focus on the man not the number

Men's health

Low testosterone levels: focus on the man not the number

Bu B. Yeap

Figures

© new africa/SHUTTERSTOCK model used for illustrative purposes only
© new africa/SHUTTERSTOCK model used for illustrative purposes only

Abstract

Men concerned about low testosterone levels in the setting of older age or illness should be offered a holistic assessment and encouraged to engage in healthy lifestyle behaviours. Only men who are androgen deficient due to underlying hypothalamic, pituitary or testicular disorders warrant testosterone therapy.

Article Extract

As men grow older, their testosterone levels gradually decline.1 This is closely associated with increased central adiposity and the accumulation of medical comorbidities.2,3 These changes have prompted speculation that falling sex hormone levels are an inevitable part of reproductive ageing in men. It is important to identify men with androgen deficiency due to underlying hypothalamic, pituitary or testicular disorders, as these men benefit from testosterone therapy.4 However, most men have an intact hypothalamic–pituitary–testicular (HPT) axis, and are best served by a holistic assessment and support to engage in healthy lifestyle behaviours, facilitating loss of excess weight.5