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Hypogonadism - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

What exactly is Hypogonadism?

Hypogonadism is a type of sexual condition that takes place when the sex glands of a person do not function properly resulting in either complete lack of production of sex hormones or in minute amounts. The sex glands are also referred to as gonads and happen to be chiefly the ovaries in females and testes in men. Secondary sex characteristics such as the development of testes in males and the development of breasts in women in addition to the growth of pubic hair are controlled to a large extent by sex hormones. Hormones also serve to perform a function in the production of sperms and in the menstrual cycle in females.

Hypogonadism is also referred to as gonad deficiency. In males, it is also termed as andropause or a condition of low serum testosterone.

Variants of Hypogonadism

Hypogonadism has been found to occur in two different variants viz. central and primary hypogonadism.

Primary Hypogonadism - A person suffering from primary hypogonadism basically suffers from a deficiency of sex hormones which occurs due to problematic gonads. They continue to receive instructions from the brain to produce sex hormones but simply cannot produce them.

Central Hypogonadism – Central Hypogonadism is also sometimes referred to as secondary hypogonadism. The culprit in this variant of the disease is the brain. This condition results from the dysfunction of the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus which is responsible for controlling the gonads.

Why do they take place?

  • The causes which instigate primary hypogonadism are:
  • The primary issue may lie with the genes. Genetic disorders like Klinefelter syndrome and Turner syndrome often result in primary hypogonadism.
  • Some autoimmune disorders also may result in the condition. Such disorders include hypoparathyroidism and Addison’s disease.
  • Infections that are of a severe nature may also result in primary hypogonadism.
  • Diseases of the liver are another cause of this variant of hypogonadism.
  • Kidney diseases may also eventually lead to primary hypogonadism.
  • Another cause may be undescended testes.
  • If your body happens to absorb too much of iron, it leads to hemochromatosis which too may serve to lead to the disease.
  • Exposure to radiation is another common cause.
  • Surgery performed on the sex organs may result in the disease.

Causes of Central Hypogonadism

Secondary or Central Hypogonadism may result from:

  • Disorders of the genes like Kallmann syndrome.
  • Infections like AIDS and HIV.
  • Pituitary gland disorders.
  • Inflammatory diseases.
  • Rapid loss of weight.
  • Obesity
  • Use of opiates or steroids typically when used for a long time.
  • Deficiency in nutrition.
  • Exposure to radiation.
  • Surgery performed on the brain.
  • If the hypothalamus or the pituitary is injured for any reason.
  • Tumors around or in the pituitary.
Treatable by medical professional Require medical diagnosis Lab test always required Chronic: can last for years or be lifelong
Sexual difficulties Reduced fertility Absence of menstruation in women

Popular Health Tips

10 Warning Signs of Low Testosterone

PGP In Diabetologist, Fellowship in Non-Invasive Cardiology, MD - Medicine, MBBS
Endocrinologist, Delhi
10 Warning Signs of Low Testosterone

Testosterone is often the subject of jokes but an insufficiency of this hormone is no laughing matter. Along with affecting your sex drive, low levels of testosterone can also affect your ability to concentrate on tasks, lead to high blood pressure and cholesterol. Additionally, it can increase your risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes. Here are a few signs that could indicate low levels of testosterone-

  1. Decreased Libido: With age, you may experience a lowered libido but a sudden decline in your sex drive could be caused by a lack of testosterone.

  2. Erectile Dysfunction: Lowered levels of testosterone in the body can affect the release of nitric oxide necessary for an erection. Men suffering from lowered testosterone levels often find themselves either not able to have an erection or have erections that are not firm enough for intercourse.

  3. Fatigue: Feeling tired at the end of a day is normal but men who have lowered testosterone levels may find themselves feeling extremely tired by lunchtime. You may also notice a loss of drive and enthusiasm.

  4. Moodiness: Men with low levels of testosterone often become depressed and dejected. They feel less optimistic than normal and become more irritable.

  5. Reduced Muscles: Testosterone is linked to muscle building and hence a lowered level of testosterone can be indicated by a reduction in the arm, chest or leg muscles. Men with low testosterone also find it difficult to build muscle mass.

  6. Lowered Attention Span: Testosterone is responsible for focus and attention. Hence, trouble concentrating on work and memory problems can be seen as signs of lowered testosterone levels.

  7. Development of Breasts: The lack of testosterone can cause an imbalance of oestrogen to testosterone ratio in the body. As the oestrogen levels get higher, men may find themselves growing breast tissue. This condition is also known as gynecomastia.

  8. Bone Problems: A lack of testosterone can affect bone density. This may lead to osteoporosis like conditions and joint pains. Men with low testosterone levels are also more prone to injuries.

  9. Lowered Semen Production: Testosterone is directly linked to semen production. The lower a man’s testosterone levels, the lesser the amount of semen produced.

  10. Hair Loss: Many men experiencing lowered testosterone levels suffer from hair loss on their head and other parts of the body as well.

The good news is that this disorder can be treated. Hence, if you find yourself experiencing any of these symptoms, consult a doctor at the earliest.

3117 people found this helpful

Symptoms of Hypogonadism and What Causes it?

Gynaecologist, Chennai
Symptoms of Hypogonadism and What Causes it?

When the reproductive glands produce scant to no hormones like oestrogen or testosterone, then it is known as hypogonadism. These hormones are important for controlling secondary sex characteristics like development of breasts in women and testes in men and growth in pubic hair. Sex hormones are also required for the roles they play in menstrual cycle in women and sperm production in men.

Hypogonadism is curable with the right medicines.

Types of Hypogonadism

1. Primary hypogonadism: In this type, there are not enough sex hormones in your body because of a problem in your gonads (testis or ovary). In primary hypogonadism, the gonads do receive the message from the brain to produce sex hormones but cannot produce them.

2. Central/Secondary hypogonadism: In this type, the brain is wherein the problem lies. The pituitary gland and hypothalamus located in the brain do not work properly.

What causes Hypogonadism

The causes of hypogonadism can be classified according to their types.

In primary hypogonadism, the causes are:

1. Genetic disorders (for example, Turner syndrome in women and Klinefelter syndrome in men)

2. Autoimmune disorders

3. Infection

4. Kidney and Liver disease

5. Radiation

6. Surgery

In central hypogonadism, the causes are:

1. Anorexia nervosa

2. Tumours

3. Bleeding in the pituitary area

4. Trauma

5. Taking certain medicines (for example, glucocorticoids and opiates)

6. Anabolic steroids (alternatives to human testosterone)

7. Surgery

8. Genetic problems (example: Kallmann syndrome- unable to start or complete puberty)

9. Radiation

10. Infections

11. Hemochromatosis (excessive iron)

12. Nutritional deficiencies

Symptoms associated with Hypogonadism

Symptoms of hypogonadism in females include

1. Lack of menstruation

2. Changes in mood and energy

3. Body hair loss

4. Lack of sex drive

5. Milky discharge from breasts

Symptoms of male hypogonadism include

1. Body hair loss

2. Loss in muscles

3. Abnormal growth in breasts

4. Low libido

5. Erectile dysfunction

6. Fatigue

If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a Gynaecologist.

3080 people found this helpful

Hair Transplant- 5 Things When It's A Must

Trichologist, Mumbai
Hair Transplant- 5 Things When It's A Must

Hair transplant is a surgical procedure where hair is surgically implanted on the head. You can opt for this procedure, if you suffer from hair loss and bald spots on your head. The surgery comprises of shifting hair follicles from one part of the head to another. Mostly, hair follicles from back of the head are relocated to the balding areas.

The reasons when you can opt for a hair transplant are

  1. Involutional alopecia: It is a form of alopecia where the hair growth tends to decrease due to ageing resulting in thinning and shorter hair. The follicles remain in the telogen phase (resting phase) for an extended amount of time. You may opt for a hair transplant surgery to correct this disorder.
  2. Male pattern baldness (Androgenic alopecia): Androgenic alopecia is a condition which is characterized by a gradual receding hairline, especially along the temples. This is caused due to the testosterone hormone being converted in to Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) which causes shrinking of the hair follicles. If you are affected by male pattern baldness, then you may opt for a hair transplant surgery.
  3. Female pattern baldness: Females may also be affected by baldness which is characterized by loss of hair from the top of the head and gradual thinning of hair. It may lead to self-esteem issues; so opting for a hair transplant surgery is recommended.
  4. Traction alopecia: This type of hair loss occurs due to exertion of external pressure on the hair which may cause it to fall. If the hair does not grow back then it would result in a bald patch. Thus you may opt for a hair transplant procedure if you suffer from this disorder and experience loss of hair.
  5. Trichotillomania: This is a psychological condition where a person pulls out his/her hair. If excessive hair is lost resulting in bald spots, then you may opt for hair transplant surgery. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a dermatologist.
2668 people found this helpful

Know Low Testosterone Level And Erectile Dysfunction

MD - General Medicine
Sexologist, Delhi
Know Low Testosterone Level And Erectile Dysfunction

Low Testosterone Levels Can Cause Erectile Dysfunction - Here's How To Naturally Boost Your Sex Life

Erectile dysfunction is the mostly consistent inability to achieve or maintain an erection. Inadequate blood flow to the manhood due to weak circulation or narrowing arteries is a cause and low testosterone levels can be the culprit.

Testosterone, also more known as the male sex hormone, has multiple roles in the body for a man. The major function is how your sexual life performs. After your early twenties you will start to lose 1-2% of your testosterone every year.

When testosterone levels decrease, you may see an effect on your emotional state of mind, energy levels, general body strength and vitality.

What are the signs?

It is beneficial to understand the symptoms, so that you can boost levels naturally. Some of the more common symptoms are:

• Loss in early morning erections: Waking with an erection is common for men, but does a lack of morning wood mean erectile dysfunction? If you find you are losing morning erections, then you might have low testosterone levels. It can be the initial symptom noticed in men. Since the levels are higher during the morning, you need to wake up regularly with an erection. If they no longer happen, you should immediately seek help. There are herbal medicines available such as Malaysian ginseng which can increase libido. enhance sexual performance.

• Enhanced body fat: Low testosterone seems to cause weight gain in men and is one of the risk factors for lower than normal levels of hormones. If there is additional weight and in the absence of testosterone, the hormone estrogen takes over. Estrogen is said to be feminizing, thereby can bring about male breasts and excess weight on other parts of the body.

• Muscle mass loss: Maintaining muscle can be a problem as symptoms of low testosterone can also include decreased muscle and strength. Testosterone is required for building and maintaining lean body mass and if levels get decrease too much, then lethargy, and fatigue can develop.

• Lack of libido: Lack of sex drive can result from low testosterone. Low testosterone can reduce your ability to have a fulfilling sex life. Just as low levels of testosterone can restrict erectile function, it can inhibit sex drive too. Testosterone is what sparks a man's sex drive and if levels are low, likely to become less interested in having sex.

So how do you increase levels?

Changing your diet and boosting certain deficiencies may be the natural alternative that may work the best for men in the longer term.

Healthy oils are also good 
Certain fats like virgin coconut oil and olive oil can help to increase testosterone levels. Coconut oil is mainly saturated and these fats are considered the best type for increased testosterone levels.

Zinc can restore your sex life 
Vital nutrients are required and one important minerals by far is zinc. Taking zinc supplements can help increase serum testosterone levels.

Fatty fish for vitamin D 
To keep testosterone pumping, sufficient levels of Vitamin D is required. Excess weight and hormonal imbalances can be a result of a deficiency. Fatty fish like tuna, mackerel and salmon, are a great sources of vitamin D.

1. Too much alcohol damaging effects of too much alcohol consumption as this can affect testosterone levels in the body.

2.Excessive amounts of refined carbohydrates.

3. Too much stress, as this can affect your sex life.

If low testosterone levels is the issue then pills like Viagra may not be the answer on its own. There are many pills, available such as Viagra and Cialis, but these simply mask over the symptoms, and do not resolve the underlying cause of the problem.

Milder erection concerns including softer erections and low libido can often be enhanced with the use of natural remedies.


2 people found this helpful

Female Hypogonadism - Understanding The Primary & Secondary Causes!

Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)
Sexologist, Haldwani
Female Hypogonadism - Understanding The Primary & Secondary Causes!

Hypogonadism in females occurs when your sex glands produce little or no sex hormones.The sex glands, also called gonads that are responsible for ovary formation in females, breast enlargement and in menstrual cycle.

What Are the Types of Female Hypogonadism?
There two types of hypogonadism are primary and central hypogonadism.

Primary Hypogonadism: Primary hypogonadism means that you don't have enough sex hormones in your body due to a problem in your gonads. Your gonads are still receiving the message to produce hormones from your brain, but they aren't able to produce them.

Central Hypogonadism or Secondary Hypogonadism: In central hypogonadism, the problem lies in your brain. The hypothalamus and pituitary gland in your brain, which control your gonads, aren't working properly.

Causes of Primary Hypogonadism:

  1. Autoimmune disorders, such as Addison's disease and hypoparathyroidism
  2. Genetic disorders, such as Turner syndrome and Klinefelter syndrome
  3. Severe infections
  4. Liver and kidney diseases
  5. Hemochromatosis, which happens when your body absorbs too much iron
  6. Radiation exposure
  7. Surgery of your sex organs

Causes of Central or Secondary Hypogonadism include:

  1. Genetic disorders, such as Kallmann syndrome (abnormal hypothalamic development)
  2. Infections, including HIV and AIDS
  3. Pituitary disorders
  4. Inflammatory diseases including sarcoidosis, tuberculosis, and histiocytosis
  5. Obesity
  6. Rapid weight loss
  7. Nutritional deficiencies
  8. Use of steroids or opiates (especially long-term usage)
  9. Brain surgery
  10. Radiation exposure
  11. Injury to your pituitary gland or hypothalamus
  12. A tumor in or near your pituitary gland

Symptoms that May Affect Females Include:

  1. Lack of menstruation
  2. Slow or absent breast growth
  3. Hot flashes
  4. Loss of body hair
  5. Low or absent sex drive
  6. Milky discharge from your breasts

Treatment for Hypogonadism in Women: Your treatment will involve increasing the amount of female sex hormones in your body. Your first line of treatment will probably be estrogen therapy if you've had a hysterectomy. Either a patch or pill can administer the supplemental estrogen hormone. Estrogen must be balanced with progesterone, because taking estrogen alone leads to a dangerous build up of the lining of the uterus (endometrial hyperplasia) that can lead to cancer of the uterus. Low-dose testosterone may be added for women with hypogonadism who have a low sex drive.

3336 people found this helpful

Popular Questions & Answers

Sir, my testosterone level 279 ng. My age is 28. Sir I think my testosterone level is at lower side. Sir I facing a problem lack of sleep I am not able to sleep at night from 2 years because of my phone addiction. Sir I want to know that might lack of sleep is a reason of low testosterone and causing low sex drive.

Bachelor of Unani Medicine & Surgery (B.U.M.S)
Unani Specialist, Gaya
Your testosterone level is slightly low. Lack of testosterone levels can lead to less satisfaction and imbalance in marital life. Testosterone plays a crucial role in stimulating muscle growth, bone growth, energy production etc. Testosterone also affects the libido and mood. And when declines they are negatively affected. Testosterone levels in men normally fall by only 1%/year after the age of 40 and half of those in their 70s, have testosterone levels within normal range for younger men. Alcohol consumption and smoking leads to decrease of hormones. It may cause many disease such as Obesity, physical weakness, low libido and stamina, lack of mental and physical efficiency. So, it is essential to always maintain testosterone levels. Many Unani medicine such as khusya buz increase male hormones levels. These medicine r actively decreases the lack of infertility in men and improves sperm motility, thanx U r free to contact for more enquiries .or you may consult privetly.

Hi Sir, How to increase testosterone in body and how to increase it and what foods to eat to get the results and what type of workout should I do and how many time should I workout in a week.

Diploma in Clinical Nutrition, Certified Diabetes Educator, Diploma in Sport & Exercise Nutrition, Diploma in Human Nutrition, Lifestyle Medicine, BSC IN LIFE SCIENCES
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Bangalore
To increase testosterone eat healthy fats like nuts & seeds, avoid bad fat like fried food. Eat natural food like fruits and veggies. Do legs exercise at least 3 times in a week.

Hi Sir, I had done my testosterone test and the results are 200 ng/dl. What can I do now. Is this cure by medicine.

Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine & Surgery (BAMS)
Sexologist, Lucknow
Yes ,Ayurveda has power to cure all sexual problems. Your testosterone level can be increased by certain food. The two nutrients are extremly important for your diet vitamin D and Zinc they are crucial in boosting your T levels you can take oysters and shellfishes for the zinc content ,tuna to increase vitamin D levels and egg yolk is for optimizing Testosterone levels. For more information contact us.
1 person found this helpful

I have taken ashwagandha to perform better in gym and also to boost testosterone levels now I'm not more in the cycle now my testosterone levels are 358 what I do to naturally increase it?

Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS), MD - Alternate Medicine, CFN
Sexologist, Karnal
you should do weight lifting exercises in gym. this increases your testosterone levels naturally , especially if you lift heavyweights. eat protein rich foods . have at least 2 whole eggs everyday . have plenty of green leafy vegetables. get your Vitamin D3 levels checked and have Vitamin D3 supplements if your Vitamin D3 levels are low, because low levels of Vitamin D3 also result into dip in testosterone levels. Good luck.