Inadequate Production of Testosterone
The ovaries and adrenals are responsible for testosterone production. So, if these organs do not function properly or are removed, this can be a cause of low testosterone and will cause your testosterone levels to immediately drop by as much as 50%.
On the other hand, the pituitary gland of the brain is responsible for sending signals that instruct the ovaries and adrenals to manufacture testosterone. If a woman is afflicted with an illness that impairs the functioning of the pituitary gland, the ovaries and adrenals may be a cause of low testosterone or stop testosterone production altogether.
Just getting older can have significant impacts on Testosterone production (just as in men). So, if you are above 45 or well into menopause then this could be the cause of your low testosterone levels.
Excessive Hormone Binding
A certain amount of testosterone attaches to the Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) which transports protein and hormones within the body. As SHBG binds more testosterone there is a decrease in available testosterone for the body to use and you start to suffer the symptoms of low testosterone. Certain factors can trigger this excessive binding:
- Oral estrogens (including oral contraceptives, HRT tablets)
- Thyroxine tablets
- Increasing age
- Some anticonvulsants (e.g. phenytoin)
- Reduced liver function
Non-Hormonal Drugs that Interfere with Testosterone
It has been observed that there are certain medicines that counteract the benefits of testosterone. These are:
|Oral oestrogens||Oral contraceptive pill, HRT|
|Medroxyprogesterone||Contraceptive, HRT||Bioidentical Progesterone|
|Clonidine||Hot flushes||Bioidentical Progesterone|
|H2 antagonists||Oesophageal reflux|
Under no circumstances should patients change or cease taking medications without the consent of their doctor. If a patient is taking one or more of these medications and experiencing a lowered sexual desire he or she should consult their medical practitioner.
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