It’s not as publicised as much as Menopause, but there is a male equivalent which causes a gradual reduction in testosterone. It is called Andropause.
Firstly, Menopause is when the cycles stop in a woman and this is due to the depletion of eggs. The ovaries produce oestrogen and when we get a depletion in that, the symptoms of menopause occur (with the most common being hot flushes) and usually begins around the age of 50.
When it comes to males, according to Dr Hunter, we know that sperm production continues throughout their life, however, the testicular function does decline with age. With testosterone deficiency syndrome, also know as Andropause, the symptoms are considered very vague and general.
Symptoms could include fatigue, muscle weakness, loss of muscle bulk, change in libido and mood. This will only occur in men usually well over the age of 50.
According to Dr Hunter, men who start experiencing these types of symptoms should consult their doctor. The doctor will then be able to give a proper diagnosis. An alternative to Andropause, these symptoms could be caused due to a pathological problem – such as renal disease or lung disease.
Just like in women with menopause, proper lifestyle management is important. Regular exercise, eating correctly and there is some research on testosterone therapy. The therapy could improve symptoms, and it is known that testosterone improves insulin function, glucose intolerance and blood pressure. However, getting a proper diagnosis is key before considering any type of treatment, according to Dr Hunter.