Low Testosterone Therapy for Women
Testosterone is a hormone that in women is produced by the ovaries and adrenal glands on a continual basis. Testosterone blood levels are at their highest around age 20 and decline steadily with time. At the age of 40 a woman’s serum testosterone levels are approximately half what they were at age 20. This level continues to fall with age.
Symptoms of Low Testosterone can include reduced libido, unexplained fatigue, depression, lack of concentration and emotional mood changes typify the symptoms of testosterone deficiency in some women.
Benefits of Testosterone Therapy
The use of testosterone in women has extensively been reviewed in medical literature for decades, however, it is important to understand it is not currently FDA approved for use in women. You may notice a change in how you feel within days, weeks, or months of starting treatment depending on what type of testosterone therapy you select.
Benefits may include:
- Decreased hormone related mood swings, anxiety
- Improved sleep and energy
- Improved sex drive, vaginal lubrication, and sexual response sensation
- Improved sense of well-being
- Increased muscle mass and bone strength
You Should Not Have Testosterone if you are pregnant, planning on becoming pregnant, or breast-feeding. Testosterone can cause birth defects. You should not take testosterone if you have undiagnosed heavy menses bleeding, postmenopausal bleeding, breast cancer history, or active cardiovascular disease. Patients who are not sterilized and not menopausal are advised to utilize reliable birth control while undergoing testosterone therapy. You must be postmenopausal, sterilized or use highly effective birth control in order to receive testosterone therapy.
Risks of testosterone therapy
A full health evaluation and blood testosterone levels should always be determined before using any testosterone replacement. It is essential that a physician closely monitors supplementation with testosterone.
Risks and side effects of testosterone may include:
- The most common side effects include acne, greasy hair, oily skin, or unwanted hair growth
- Rare consequences include:
- Uterine bleeding or growth of pre-existing estrogen dependent tumors (breast or endometrial)
- Breast changes, growth of liver tumors, voice change and clitoral enlargement, elevated cholesterol levels and cardiovascular disease
It is very important to understand that these side effects are extremely unlikely when appropriate medical evaluation has been completed prior to therapy initiation, doses are monitored, and blood levels are kept within the normal ranges.