What is Hypogonadism?

Male hypergonadism, also known as testosterone deficiency, refers to when the testes cannot produce enough testosterone and/or sperm. Hypergonadism is often a result of a disease that involves the hypothalamus and pituitary gland.

Hypogonadism can affect multiple aspects of a man’s life, not just sexual function. It can affect men of any age, and has even been found in some boys before puberty. If this does occur, puberty will not continue to progress.

Symptoms will vary from person to person, depending on many variables such as onset age, how far developed the disorder is, and how low testosterone levels are. Some symptoms sufferers may notice are:

  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Decreased muscle strength and mass
  • Sweating and hot flushes
  • Depression or mood disorders
  • Increased body fat and breast enlargement
  • Fatigue and lack of energy
  • Loss of body hair
  • Insomnia or disturbed sleep

There are two main types of hypogonadism: primary and secondary. Primary hypogonadism may be due to a congenital disorder, or acquired following severe trauma to the testes, mumps, tumours, or chemotherapy. Secondary hypogonadism can be caused by the following:

  • Certain medication
  • Stress
  • Malnutrition
  • Certain toxins like alcohol and heavy metals
  • Obesity
  • Some systematic illnesses

Fortunately, hypogonadism can often be treated with hormone replacement therapy. If you believe you or someone you know may be suffering from hypogonadism, check in with healthcare professional to find a solution.

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