Can Woman Benefit From Testosterone Therapy?
There are many positive benefits of testosterone therapy. While testosterone is the male hormone, and testosterone replacement therapy is most often used to treat men with low testosterone, you may be surprised to learn that women can benefit from testosterone therapy as well.
Why Do Women Need Testosterone?
Even though testosterone is an androgen, or “male hormone,” women’s bodies do make and need testosterone, albeit, not as much as men, and for different things than men do. Unlike being necessary in vast amounts to provide for the development of “maleness” in men, in women, testosterone is necessary for:
- Sex drive
- Red blood cell production
- Muscle mass and fat distribution
When a women is experiencing low testosterone, all of the above can be negatively affected.
As in men, a woman’s testosterone level can fluctuate throughout the day, and can be impacted by many things from diet to her menstrual cycle. However, as in their male counterparts, the most significant drain on testosterone levels in women, occurs from the impact of ageing.
Why Do Women Need Testosterone Therapy?
When you think about hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for women, the first thought that usually comes to mind is the typical estrogen therapy that is used to treat menopausal symptoms. However, when a woman is going through menopause, along with estrogen depletion, she is also losing her ability to produce adequate amounts of testosterone. A woman with low testosterone, will have trouble producing new blood cells, maintaining her libido or sex drive, and will find it harder to build muscle and burn fat.
When this is the case she will show the signs of low testosterone. The signs and symptoms of low testosterone in woman include:
- Feeling tired or sluggish
- Reduced sex drive
- Decreased sexual satisfaction
- Vaginal dryness
- Disturbed Sleep
- Weight gain
- Mental fog
- Loss of bone density
Current research indicates that women who are on estrogen replacement for menopausal symptoms, can also benefit when testosterone therapy is added as an adjunct to estrogen replacement in these women. Testosterone, when used in this way, seems to specifically help with the sexual wellness issues typical of post-menopausal women. According to Dr. Alan Malabanan, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, “Studies of postmenopausal women have found that taking testosterone (often in addition to the hormone therapy women are already taking to treat menopause symptoms) increases sexual desire and pleasure compared with a placebo (inactive treatment).”
How Can Women Benefit From Testosterone Therapy?
In addition to helping women with the sexual health issues that often occur as they age, and testosterone levels drop, testosterone therapy has also been shown to help women in other matters of overall health and wellness. One of the most widely respected studies showing testosterone’s importance in maintaining a woman’s general health as well as sexual satisfaction was published in 2000 in the New England Journal of Medicine. Using traditionally accepted randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled methodology, this study concluded that, “transdermal testosterone improves sexual function and psychological well-being.” Transdermal testosterone is a form of testosterone replacement therapy that is given using transdermal (skin) patches.
In addition to increasing the libido, and increasing health and vitality overall, testosterone therapy in women can also:
- Encourage improved heart health
- Help to prevent osteoporosis by strengthening bones and increasing density
- Increases muscle mass and reduce fat
- Improve mood
- Improve sleep
How Can Women Make Sure to Get the Best Testosterone Therapy?
Testosterone is vital to the strength, vitality, and wellbeing of both men and women. However, in women, testosterone therapy must be given with particular care. In women, testosterone therapy is rarely given alone, but is prescribed as part of an overall program of Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) designed to bring all of her hormones back into proper balance.
Therefore it is imperative that any women who thinks that she may benefit from testosterone therapy, seek her treatment from a doctor, or HRT clinic that is skilled and experienced. This way, she can be sure that she will be getting the very best testosterone therapy tailored to her unique needs, body, and lifestyle.