Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Is There A Manopause

sweatingImage via WikipediaHot flashes, moodiness, sudden sweating, and fatigue are all symptoms that plague women during menopause.But women are not alone. Men go through something similar.

Called menopause, in the medical world, male menopause or hypogonadism, is frustrating, but easily treated. Many men are skeptical of the condition's existence.

Doctors say men lose about 1 percent of testosterone a year from the time they are 30. By the time a man reaches his mid to late 40s and early 50s, he is dealing with manopause. "Some actually might think that it's just a part of aging that they're supposed to feel this way based on their age," nurse practitioner Lisa Williams said. "That's true and because of that, many men are treated for the symptoms of male menopause or hypogonadism," endocrinologist Dr. Jahangir Cyrus said.

Men are treated for the depression, lack of focus, moodiness, sudden bouts of sweating, or the change in libido. The foundational problem of a hormonal drop in testosterone is left unchecked, leaving a man with other frustrating complications. "Really, because we're not addressing the right problem, we compound the problem and basically we will be barking up the wrong tree," Cyrus said. "It's not a common term, you don't hear about it. Most people, if they hear about it, they think, well, he went out and got a red sports car or maybe there's a midlife crisis involved there, but that is not the case. It's definitely hormonal," Williams said. Cyrus said even if men are given all the symptoms, most only focus on one: the lack of libido. He said when they hear that one symptom, they want nothing to do with the medical diagnosis.

Lack of sex drive is a small portion of male menopause. Cyrus said the hormonal drop also causes weight gain, lack of energy, lack of interest in anything joyful and easy fatiguing. As more in the medical field talk about male menopause, insurance companies are covering the diagnosis. "No.1, we have now the means of making the diagnosis very accurate. No. 2, we have increased numbers of patients with this problem than two decades ago," Cyrus said.Even with the blood test and insurance companies backing the diagnosis, many men still shy away from entering the doctor's office.Often times, it is the woman in the man's life who finally convinces him to test for the condition.

There you have it—women are not alone in the land of menopause. It seems that men now need wicking pajamas too.
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