Male menopause or andropause affects the body’s hormone production, particularly testosterone production. This results in bodily signs and symptoms, but does it lead to erectile dysfunction?
In this article:
- The Prevalence of Erectile Dysfunction in the US
- Erectile Dysfunction and Hormones
- Symptoms of Hormone Imbalance in Men
- How Can a Hormone Imbalance in Men Cause Erectile Dysfunction?
- How to Know If Your ED Is Hormone-Related
- Try Solutions to See What Works
- What You Can Do About Hormone-Related Erectile Dysfunction
Male Menopause, Hormone Imbalance, and Sexual Dysfunction
The Prevalence of Erectile Dysfunction in the US
More than 30 million men in the US suffer from erectile dysfunction (ED). While ED is a complex disorder involving physiological and psychological factors, it’s far more common than most people think.
Yet, that doesn’t remove the stigma of it.
Erectile Dysfunction and Hormones
Most men who experience ED are, in fact, too embarrassed or ashamed to report it to their physicians. So that number of 30 million might actually be significantly higher.
Is it something within our control? And if so, do our hormones have something to do with it as well?
You can define hormones as chemical agents that play an important role in controlling bodily functions. They’re produced by the endocrine system and travel through the bloodstream towards the targeted organs of the body.
They also manage bodily processes such as your metabolism, blood sugar levels, body temperature, heart rate, sexual activity, and more.
However, in most men, due to many factors such as age, diet, chronic illness, and injuries, hormone imbalance is a common symptom.
Symptoms of Hormone Imbalance in Men
We all have a glitch in our health here and there. It could be a slight difference in our anatomy or a blood test that is outside the norm.
Most of these glitches are minor issues that don’t impact our daily lives much if at all. Others, on the other hand, can have an impact on one of the most essential parts of the human experience: your sex life.
Erectile dysfunction not only takes away your ability to have sex but it’s a serious blow to your confidence. Would you be surprised to know that a hormone imbalance in men is a common cause?
Here’s what you need to know.
RELATED: What’s New In ED Therapy?
How Can a Hormone Imbalance in Men Cause Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction rates increase as men get older, affecting as many as 45% of men over the age of 75. These are self-reported, though, so chances are that the number is even higher.
There are many potential causes for ED, including several types of hormone imbalances.
1. Low Testosterone Levels
Testosterone is the most frequent culprit by far when it comes to hormone-related erectile dysfunction. As the primary “male hormone,” testosterone is related to many male-specific traits and functions like high muscle mass and yes, erections.
While low testosterone, also called low T, is linked to ED, doctors aren’t sure why. We know that low T lowers a man’s sex drive, so this explains why some men with testosterone deficiency can reduce their ED with testosterone.
However, some men with low T have erectile dysfunction while having a healthy sex drive. These men often see improvement in their ED with testosterone therapy as well.
2. High Prolactin
Another potential hormone which can cause ED is prolactin. Prolactin is best known as the hormone which helps mothers produce breast milk, but men have low levels of it too.
High prolactin can be an effect of certain illnesses or medications. It can also be the result of a benign tumor on your pituitary gland: the gland that produces prolactin.
Regardless of the reason, if a man has too much prolactin in his blood, it can lead to problems with erections.
3. Thyroid Imbalance
The third hormone issue which can cause erectile dysfunction is thyroid imbalance.
Your thyroid gland produces a range of hormones that control several functions within your body. If your thyroid is overactive (hyperthyroidism) or underactive (hypothyroidism), it could contribute to ED.
Doctors aren’t sure exactly why thyroid imbalances impact erections. It may be because your thyroid helps to regulate your blood pressure, and high blood pressure can lead to ED.
How to Know If Your ED Is Hormone-Related
You probably know that there are many potential causes of erectile dysfunction. Here’s how to know if yours is likely to be hormone-related.
Rule Out Other Causes
You can narrow down the list of suspects for your ED by the process of elimination.
Two frequent causes of erectile dysfunction are high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Both of these conditions restrict blood flow to the penis, which can prevent or limit erections.
Some neurological conditions can also lead to ED. Multiple sclerosis, nerve problems and chronic pain in your back, and spinal cord injuries have all had this effect.
Finally, your mental health can play a role. Erectile dysfunction can be a side effect of both depression and anxiety.
If your blood pressure, cholesterol, neurological health, and mental health are normal, your ED is likely to be hormone-related.
Keep in mind, though, that your ED could be the result of any of these issues combined with a hormone imbalance. If you have any of these risk factors above, it doesn’t mean your testosterone or other hormones don’t contribute to the problem.
Consider Your Other Symptoms
Another way to find out if you have the hormone imbalances above is to examine your other symptoms. All of these imbalances can cause other issues along with ED.
Low testosterone has a variety of symptoms. These include fatigue, low libido, muscle loss, mood swings, and shrinking testicles.
High prolactin, on the other hand, often causes headaches, vision problems, and breast tenderness in men. In rare cases, it can cause men to produce breast milk too.
If you have these symptoms above along with your ED, your hormones are probably to blame.
Try Solutions to See What Works
Believe it or not, this is a common tactic doctors use. If they don’t know what is causing a patient’s issue, they’ll try a treatment for one of the possibilities and see if it works.
As long as you follow the instructions and go through a safe source, hormone therapy has minimal side effects. Giving it a try is a safe way to see if it can help your ED.
What You Can Do About Hormone-Related Erectile Dysfunction
Let’s assume you’ve read the information above and determined that a hormone imbalance is probably contributing to your erectile dysfunction. There are two ways you can get treatment.
1. Go to a Traditional Doctor
You call your doctor and schedule an appointment.
Weeks later when your appointment time arrives, you spend two hours in the doctor’s office.
You pay for the visit.
The doctor orders blood tests. Maybe you have to drive to another location and spend more time. Maybe you have to wait for a whole new appointment.
You get blood drawn and pay for them.
You wait until the results come in.
If you’re lucky, your doctor calls in a prescription. If not, you have to set up and go to another appointment with your doctor for them to give you the prescription.
You go to the pharmacy and shell out more money.
A month after you started the process and perhaps hundreds of dollars later, you finally start your treatment.
2. Let Us Help You With Your Erectile Dysfunction
The other option is going through Alpha Now. You can chat with our board-certified physicians online, from anywhere that’s convenient for you.
Simply answer a few questions in our simple online questionnaire to determine whether ED medication is right for you.
The best part? We’ll discreetly ship your medication straight to your doorstep.
The cause-effect relationship between hormonal imbalance and ED has been an object of scientific interest throughout the years as evidenced by the studies included above. It exists, and it’s common.
But dealing with male menopause symptoms, erectile or sexual dysfunction, loss of libido, or imbalance in sex hormone levels need not be overly complicated. There are multiple simpler treatments available, including our Viagra, Sildenafil, and Tadalafil pills.
What are your thoughts on taking pills to improve sexual performance? Share them with us in the comments below!
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on June 10, 2019, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.