Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is a viable treatment option for individuals who have low levels of estrogen, progesterone, or testosterone. HRT is often a treatment for women who are going through menopause, but certain forms of HRT treatment can also be used to treat men who have low levels of testosterone.
Some signs that you might need HRT include:
- Low libido or sexual dysfunction
- Weight gain
- Loss of muscle mass
- Bone density loss
- Mood swings
- Hair loss
- Menopausal or perimenopausal symptoms, such as vaginal dryness
- Erectile dysfunction (ED)
Continue reading to learn more about these potential side effects of imbalanced hormone levels.
1. Low Libido or Sexual Dysfunction
Low levels of testosterone can result in reduced libido for both men and women. Research studies published in Current Opinion in Urology and Maturitas confirm that women with lower androgen levels due to hormonal imbalances often experience:
- Lowered libido
- Sexual dysfunction
- Lowered self-esteem
- Lowered quality of life
- Negative effects on their relationships
- “Baby blues” for women who recently gave birth
Men who have low testosterone levels may also notice changes in their sexual desires and performance.
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2. Weight Gain
For women, weight gain is a common side effect of perimenopause and menopause. This is due to estrogen reduction, according to a study reported by Climacteric: The Journal of the International Menopause Society. When the female body loses estrogen, this imbalance may affect metabolic functions – in other words, the body starts using starch and blood sugars less efficiently as energy. Low estrogen levels can lead to fat storage, which often results in weight gain.
Men who have low testosterone levels may also notice metabolic changes in their energy usage and storage. Some men with lower testosterone levels may see fat buildup on their abdomen, flank, and upper chest.
3. Loss of Muscle Mass
Menopause can also result in loss of muscle mass, which can affect women’s strength and flexibility.
A study published in JAMA Network Open noted that HRT can help protect patients from suffering more muscle weakness as they age and go through hormonal changes. However, the treatment should be supplemented with other approaches to help patients build muscle and maintain strength in their bodies. Our facility can review your condition to see how we may be able to improve your physique.
4. Bone Density Loss
In both men and women, bone density loss is a result of hormonal imbalances. When paired with an exercise regimen, HRT can help patients reduce bone density loss, particularly in the spine, according to a study published in Bone.
Reduced production of estrogen and testosterone in both men and women are main factors of bone mineral density loss. Individuals may develop osteoporosis, arthritis, or other bone-related diseases if these hormonal imbalances are left untreated. Individuals with significant bone density loss may also be more prone to fractures if they fall.
5. Mood Swings
Menopause is known for causing mood swings in women. However, hormonal imbalances can affect all genders and trigger emotional swings, whether they manifest as bouts of crying or anger.
If you are suddenly experiencing significant mood swings, you may want to consult a physician to determine if these emotional changes are a result of hormonal imbalances or another health condition.
6. Hair Loss
Estrogen and testosterone both play a role in hair production in men and women. If you have low levels of estrogen or testosterone, you may be at risk of hair loss (alopecia) or hair thinning.
The good news is that you may be able to restore hair growth with HRT. Our physicians can review how severe your hair loss is and build a treatment plan to help encourage hair regrowth and follicle repair.
7. Menopausal or Perimenopausal Symptoms
If you are a woman at menopausal or perimenopausal age, you may want to consider HRT if you are experiencing other signs of menopause. These include:
- Hot flashes
- Vaginal dryness
- Pain or discomfort during sexual intercourse
- Problems sleeping or staying asleep, including night sweats
- Irregular periods
- Urinary incontinence or other bladder problems
When women enter menopausal age, their estrogen and progesterone levels significantly drop because hormonal production stops. However, women younger than 45 may consider HRT if they are experiencing side effects of other hormonal conditions, such as infertility, endometrial hyperplasia, or breast cancer.
8. Erectile Dysfunction (ED)
If you are a man suffering from low levels of testosterone, you might begin to experience erectile dysfunction, which can cause several sexual performance problems. These include:
- Not being able to form an erection to engage in sexual intercourse
- Forming an erection, but not being able to maintain it to fulfill sexual intercourse
- Only being able to form partial erections
- Having low sexual desire
Mayo Clinic confirms that erectile dysfunction can be a symptom of other comorbid conditions, such as diabetes or obesity. However, for many men, it stems from having low testosterone levels.
Schedule an Appointment at Our Facility to Discuss HRT
If you or a loved one are experiencing one or more of the signs listed above, contact Anti-Aging & Regenerative Associates to see if HRT is right for you. Our physicians can do lab tests on your blood to measure your hormone levels and determine which treatment options will most effectively address your symptoms and improve your overall health.
To schedule your first appointment at our facility in Port Orange, Florida, call us today at (386) 366-7418.