Andropause Awareness Week: The Male Menopause Explained

male menopauseAndropause isn’t nearly as well-known as its female equivalent, the menopause, which is why there is a whole week dedicated to raising awareness of the ‘male menopause’.

What are the symptoms?

Some men, in their late 40s and early 50s, experience significant physical and emotional changes. These can include depression, tiredness or mood swings, hot flushes or increased sweating and loss of sex drive or impotence.

These symptoms can have a dramatic impact on a man’s life and happiness and if you’re experiencing a mixture of these symptoms, you should consult your GP.

What causes andropause?

Andropause or the male menopause is a controversial term, with medical opinion divided on if the condition actually exists. However, it is usually attributed to a decline in testosterone in later life. Although hypogonadism is the medically recognised condition when testosterone levels drop below normal levels for even an ageing man.

Clear-cut diagnosis of the male menopause has proved difficult because all the symptoms are also caused by other conditions, particularly those affected by poor lifestyle choices.

Are all men effected?

According the Andropause Society, around 20% of men suffer from testosterone deficiency to some extent, but figures are far from exact.

Is there treatment for it?

Following a medical diagnosis of testosterone deficiency, hormone replacement therapy can be prescribed. However this treatment isn’t suitable for those with breast or prostate cancer.

If you are concerned about a change in your physical and emotional well-being as you get older, talk to your GP for advice and support.