How is Andropause Diagnosed?
Have you heard of Andropause? Well, if you’re a man over 40, the symptoms may sound all too familiar.
Andropause is similar to its female counterpart, menopause, in that it refers to declining levels of hormones, specifically testosterone in men. Often referred to as Low T, this condition occurs most often in men as they age and can be gradual, making it difficult for both patients and physicians to recognize. Fortunately, diagnostic tools for measuring testosterone levels are improving, making it easier to identify and understand this condition. Assess your Low T symptoms to determine the best treatment options.
When to Look for Andropause
Andropause typically occurs mid-life, around the age of 40. However, andropause can occur very slowly over several years. Testosterone levels may begin declining as early as age 30. It is normal for testosterone to decline between 0.4 and 1.6 percent per year between the ages of 30 and 40.
Signs of Andropause/Low T
If you’re within this age range and begin experiencing common symptoms of low testosterone, there’s a good chance you are experiencing andropause. Symptoms to look for include:
· Fatigue/No Energy
· Inability to Focus
· Fat accumulation
· Loss of strength and muscle mass
· Depression or mood changes
· Sleep Issues, such as Apnea
· Decreased agility
· Hair loss
· Skin changes
If you’re experiencing these symptoms, it’s important to talk to a healthcare provider, as it can be difficult to officially diagnose andropause on your own. If you’re experiencing signs of low testosterone, your doctor will test your testosterone levels to confirm or disprove an andropause diagnosis.
Measuring Testosterone Levels
There are three ways to measure testosterone levels:
· Analog-free testosterone
· Free testosterone
· Bioavailable testosterone
While analog-free testosterone tests are the most common, they are not the most accurate choice. Free or bioavailable testosterone levels provide more reliable data. Total testosterone of less than 200 ng/dL is always considered low, while levels greater than 600 ng/dL are well within the healthy range. If your levels fall between these two numbers, your doctor will analyze your age, symptoms, and other factors to determine whether your condition can be classified as andropause.
Testosterone levels are measured using a simple blood test. For the most accurate results, this test should be done before ten in the morning, while levels are still at their peak. Your doctor will measure your testosterone levels over several days, as levels can vary dramatically from one day to the next.
If you suffer from low testosterone symptoms and are interested in starting treatment, contact us. Testosterone replacement therapy can restore sexual function, muscle strength, and other symptoms of andropause. If you think you may be suffering from andropause, it’s important to speak with a specialist so you can get relief from these symptoms.