Testosterone Therapy

Testosterone is a hormone secreted by the testes, adrenal glands and ovaries. Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone, responsible for male sexual development and critical in maintaining erectile function, libido, energy levels, mood, building muscles, and burning fat. It is responsible for supporting immune function, bone density, and skin tone. It controls a whole range of physiological functions throughout the body in both males and females.

Testosterone levels decline with advancing age. The decline begins when a man is in his mid to late 30s, and by the age of 80, is only 20% of what it was in youth. The number of men in the U.S. between the ages of 45 and 70 years is expected to increase from 46 million in 1990 to 81 million by 2020. Currently, more than 5 million men in the United States suffer from the effects of hypogonadism or low testosterone levels.

While the total testosterone does not drop drastically, the free testosterone, which is the biologically active form, does decline dramatically with age. Free testosterone makes up about 2-3% of the total amount of testosterone secreted. Increased estrogen levels, obesity, and insulin resistance in men can also cause a drop in the free testosterone levels. One way to help maintain testosterone levels is by reducing excess body fat. Weight training is another way to raise testosterone levels in both males and females.

In general, testosterone replenishment for andropausal men has the potential to prolong quality-of-life by decreasing many diseases of aging. Testosterone protects against cardiovascular disease; it can raise HDL (good) cholesterol, and can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. It can decrease blood pressure, excess body fat, and symptoms of arthritis. Testosterone is a memory enhancer for many men. It stimulates the cardiovascular system, the neurologic system, muscles, bones and the vascular system. It prevents tendon and joint degeneration and osteoporosis.

Dr. Hummel will help you determine the best form of administering testosterone replacement. The typical dose of bio-identical testosterone replacement is generally 1/20th to 1/40th of the dose that steroid abusers would use. He will monitor blood levels closely to achieve optimal hormone levels and functional outcomes.