Is It Possible for Women To Have Low Testosterone?
Though thought of as hormone present in men, women also produce testosterone. An excess or lack of enough testosterone in women can have effects on women’s health. Some key tasks of testosterone in women include:
- Production of hemoglobin (red blood cells)
- Improving libido
- Influencing reproductive hormone
Low testosterone can be treated with hormone replacement therapy for women. This is administered by using mouth patches, implants, transdermal skin patches, gels, or injections. The Atlanta Men’s Clinic offers injections for treatment for low testosterone in women.
What Causes Low Testosterone in Women?
Studies show that some women have low testosterone because their genes may affect their ability to produce the precursors to testosterone, DHEA and DHEA-S. Other women may not have enough of the enzymes that allow their bodies to process DHEA and DHEA-S.
Other causes of low t in women that may require treatment for low testosterone in women include:
- Early menopause (before age 40)
- Ovarian failure caused by certain medications
- Hysterectomy, or removal of the ovaries
- Primary hypogonadism, a condition in which the glands that release testosterone in women aren’t working properly.
- Hypopituitarism, an uncommon disorder in which your pituitary gland (a small gland in the back of your nose and ears that produces various hormones affecting your body) fails to secrete one of these hormones or produces too many of them
- Excess production of prolactin, a hormone that allows women to produce breast milk
In order to properly diagnose low testosterone, your doctor may perform a test in the morning. This is when testosterone levels will be at their highest. If a woman is of reproductive age the test may take place between 8 and 20 days after her last period.
Symptoms of Low Testosterone in Women
Low testosterone symptoms in women include:
- Decreased libido
- A dejected mood
- Loss of motivation
Women who experience some or all of these symptoms can contact their healthcare provider to assess the underlying causes.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy for Women
While TRT is most commonly associated with men, it can also be used to treat women who are experiencing menopausal symptoms. Low dose testosterone replacement therapy can help to improve sexual function, energy levels, and mood. It can also help to improve bone density and muscle mass.
TRT is often used in conjunction with hormone replacement therapy (HRT) as testosterone can help to offset some of the side effects of HRT such as hot flashes and night sweats. HRT typically involves taking estrogen and progesterone to replace the hormones that are no longer being produced by the ovaries. However, some women may also require testosterone replacement therapy in order to maintain adequate hormone levels.
Risks of Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women
There are a few risks to hormone replacement therapy for women, though these risks are better-known in women who use HRT due to a lack of estrogen than for treatment for low t in women. Some possible side effects include:
- Tenderness in the breasts
- Changes in mood
- Bleeding or spotting in the genital area
- Increased headaches
- Fluid retention
- Facial hair
For mor information on our treatments and services, please contact our clinical staff.