Older Male Menopause Uncommon

Male menopause affects just 2 percent of men.

Male menopause uncommon, according to health researchers. Only 2 percent of men between the ages of 40 and 79 will qualify for a strict diagnosis of hypogonadism or male menopause. Most of the time a condition where a male feels they are going through menopause can be diagnosed as something different.

Low libido, depressed mood and a lack of energy may just be a sign of normal aging for many middle-aged and elderly men, and not low testosterone levels. A recent study showed that this is, in fact, the case. Contrary to earlier studies that indicated that the diagnosis was much more common.

Each year millions of prescriptions are written to help men with “Low T,” when they most likely were just having normal signs of aging. British researchers tested more than 3,000 European men with low testosterone levels and found only three symptoms in common, fewer morning erections, fewer sexual thoughts, and erectile dysfunction. They suggest these sexual problems, in addition to a testosterone level of less than 3.2 nanograms per milliliter of blood, need to be present to identify late-onset hypogonadism, “male menopause.”

That level is about half of the “low normal” level in middle-aged men. In addition, the study found other health problems associated with low testosterone. An inability to engage in vigorous exercise, along with a loss of energy and fatigue, appeared symptomatic of the condition.

Dr. Frederick Wu of the University of Manchester, United Kingdom, and colleagues wrote in the New England Journal of Medicine, “The application of these new criteria can guard against the excessive diagnosis of hypogonadism and curb the injudicious use of testosterone in older men.” Additionally, Wu stated, “Testosterone therapy has risks, particularly in older men. The findings could help doctors identify who could benefit from it.”

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