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Andropause or "Male Menopause" is the decline of male hormonal function, which affects all men eventually. Changes typically begin after the age of 40; however, men can also experience hormonal changes sooner. The male hormones are called androgens, and include the most dominant hormone, testosterone, which is responsible for the structure of all body proteins. There comes a time in many men's lives when they are faced by the "Male Menopause", "Andropause". This equivalent of the menopause in the female is often less sudden in onset but can be just as severe in its long-term consequences.

While the congress recognised that men do not undergo the same sudden changes that women do there was an agreement that production of testosterone in the male does undergo age related decline. This is what leads to those symptoms, which are typical of andropause.

At the congress evidence was presented that testosterone supplementation improves sexual function, increases muscle mass, decreases body fat, safeguards cardiovascular health and produces stronger bones.



Some symptoms men may experience while going through andropause include:

  • Decline in sexual function
  • Decrease in muscle strength
  • Loss of bone mass
  • Aging of the face and neck
  • Loss of hair on arms and legs
  • And circulatory repercussions

    Fatigue, depression, irritability, and reduced libido and potency are the commonest symptoms. Besides lack of sex drive, there is often loss of drive and competitive edge in professional or business life. Physically, there is frequently stiffness and pain in the muscles and joints, and a rapidly falling level of fitness. There may also be signs of the accelerated ageing of the heart and circulation which testosterone deficiency can cause.



    The main causes of the andropause are stress, excess alcohol, overweight, infections, lack of exercise, and vasectomy, added to the general effects of ageing. Sometimes there may also be an absolute low level of total testosterone, but more often a relative deficiency of "free active testosterone" due to a range of factors stopping it working effectively.



    Treatment of andropause may vary from person to person and may include an exercise program, healthy eating, nutritional supplementation, and/or "natural" hormone replacement therapy.



    A questionnaire has been devised by a group of experts at the St Louis VA Medical Centre in the USA which identifies the typical features of andropause.

    1. Do you have a decrease in libido (sex drive) ?

    2. Do you have a lack of energy ?

    3. Do you have a decrease in strength and/or endurance ?

    4. Have you lost height ?

    5. Have you noticed a decreased enjoyment of life ?

    6. Are you sad and/or grumpy ?

    7. Are your erections less strong ?

    8. Have you noted a recent deterioration in your ability to play sports ?

    9. Are you falling asleep ?

    10. Has there been a recent deterioration in your work performance ?

    If you answer yes to questions 1 and 7 and to three other questions then it is highly likely that you are testosterone deficient and you should have your levels measured.


    The factual information on this page was compiled from:
    West Lindfield Pharmacy (http://www.compoundingchemist.com/),
    Eternal Health (http://www.eternalhealth.org/andropause/index.html) and
    Androscreen (http://www.goldcrossmedical.com/androscreen/malemenopause.htm)

    by people who are men and are experiencing andropause.

    Please send us your comments and experiences with being a man and going through andropause to share with others.


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