What is male hypogonadism?
Male hypogonadism is a condition in which the body does not produce enough of the testosterone hormone; the hormone that plays a key role in masculine growth and development during puberty. There is a clear need to increase the awareness of hypogonadism throughout the medical profession, especially in primary care physicians who are usually the first port of call for the patient.
Hypogonadism can significantly reduce the quality of life and has resulted in the loss of livelihood and separation of couples, leading to divorce. It is also important for doctors to recognize that testosterone is not just a sex hormone.
There are two basic types of hypogonadism that exist:
Primary: This type of hypogonadism – also known as primary testicular failure – originates from a problem in the testicles.
Secondary: This type of hypogonadism indicates a problem in the hypothalamus or the pituitary gland – parts of the brain that signal the testicles to produce testosterone. The hypothalamus produces the gonadotropin releasing hormone, which signals the pituitary gland to make the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone. The luteinizing hormone then signals the testes to produce testosterone. Either type of hypogonadism may be caused by an inherited (congenital) trait or something that happens later in life (acquired), such as an injury or an infection.
To make an appointment with our male hypogonadism specialist, call our Manhattan endocrinology practice at 646-759-9388 or click here to make an appointment.