What is Low Testosterone? 10 Signs and Symptoms

UltraPharmRX Medical Team

UltraPharmRX Medical Team

Low testosterone, also known as “low T” or hypogonadism, refers to the condition of having abnormally low levels of testosterone in the bloodstream.

The testicles and adrenal glands are responsible for producing testosterone in males. Testosterone is a male sex hormone that’s present from birth. It’s also what makes fetuses male. When puberty strikes, testosterone levels surge through the roof to produce “male” sexual characteristics such as hair growth, sperm production, and bone and muscle development. The importance of testosterone persists throughout men’s health throughout life, such as its role in regulating erectile function, sex drive, fertility, bone and muscle mass, moods, and more.

 

Testosterone levels in the body naturally diminish with age, starting in your 30s. But besides aging, there are other causes that lead to low testosterone. These include being obese or overweight, sleep problems, chronic diseases, infections arising from diseases like HIV, and the use of certain drugs like steroids and opioids.

 

How is low testosterone diagnosed?

 

The chances of developing low testosterone increase as you age. If you’re concerned about low testosterone, you can get them checked with a blood test.

Normal testosterone levels generally range from 300 and 1,000 nanograms per deciliter (ng/dL). However, testosterone levels fluctuate throughout the day, which is why healthcare providers typically require two testosterone level checks in the morning on separate days before confirming a low T diagnosis.

 

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What are the top 10 signs and symptoms of low testosterone?

 

Testosterone is responsible for a variety of bodily functions, so low levels of the hormone can have a diffuse array of signs and symptoms.

 

1) Low libido levels

 

Libido or sex drive can be caused and affected by physical, psychological, social, and environmental factors. Sex drive is different from person to person, and it can also diminish as we age. However, a low sex drive can be a hallmark sign of low testosterone. At the same time, some men manage to keep a normal libido despite having low testosterone––which proves that sex drive is more complicated than just a mere question of testosterone.

 

2) Erectile dysfunction (ED)

 

Erectile dysfunction is a common sexual dysfunction that is characterized by difficulty getting or keeping erections while engaging in sexual activity. It can also manifest as having fewer erections in the morning or spontaneous erections during the day. Low testosterone levels are among the many conditions that may lead to ED.

 

3) Excessive fatigue

 

Conditions that disturb sleep, such as sleep apnea, can cause low testosterone. Low T may happen as a result because testosterone is largely produced at night while sleeping. Studies suggest that lack of sleep or poor sleep quality can lead to low T, but the relationship between sleep and testosterone requires more research. However, men with low T often report low energy and fatigue.

 

4) Diminished muscle mass

 

Testosterone is a key contributor to muscle growth throughout life. Therefore, a drop in T levels may result in a drop in muscle mass.

 

5) Increased levels of body fat

 

Men with low testosterone may detect more body fat than they’re used to. This can lead to the development of gynecomastia or breast tissue in men. It can also lead to weight issues.

 

6) Diminished bone density

 

Low testosterone may lead to weaker, more brittle bones. Symptoms may include back pain or a reduction in height, but diminished bone density is often silent until an injury causes fractures. Your doctor can check your bone health using a bone mineral density test.

 

7) Increased body/facial hair loss

 

Hair loss induced by low testosterone usually happens in the body and face, rather than the typical male pattern baldness we know of. The latter is typically inherited as a result of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) affecting hair follicles, causing male pattern baldness. 

 

8) Diminished sperm count

 

Sperm production is driven by testosterone, so it should come as no surprise that low T levels may diminish your sperm count.

 

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9) Diminished red blood cell count

 

Testosterone plays a key role in producing red blood cells. Diminished testosterone levels may reduce red blood cells, leading to a condition known as anemia.

 

10) Changes in mood and behavior

 

Mood swings may happen as a result of low testosterone, leading to fatigue, fluctuating moods, despondency, and lack of interest or enjoyment in things you normally like, among others. Low testosterone has been linked by studies as a contributing factor to depression. 

It’s important to mention that people with low testosterone may experience some, all, or none of these symptoms. Therefore, you need to get a proper testosterone level check to get a conclusive diagnosis.

 

How is low testosterone treated?

 

If you believe you might have low testosterone, consult your doctor to get your testosterone levels checked. They will put you through a series of tests to paint the full picture of your health and see exactly what it is that’s going on.

That said, if you have been diagnosed with low testosterone, your doctor may recommend testosterone replacement therapy to help increase your T levels using topical testosterone gels, skin patches, injectable testosterone, pills, or pellets.

Before going on a testosterone therapy regimen, consult your healthcare provider. The signs and symptoms of low testosterone often mimic other underlying health conditions, and their causes are difficult to determine on your own.

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  • Discreet Shipping
  • Monthly Refills
  • No Waiting Rooms, No Appointments
  • Text Messaging Based Consultation *