Testosterone Test: Everything You Need to Know
A testosterone imbalance is a condition which consists of the male body failing to produce sufficient amounts of testosterone. This commonly affects men after the age of 30, but has been known to affect men younger than this. Usually, the process of this condition starts by the testosterone hormone declining slowly which means it can go unnoticed for long periods of time or be mistaken for other issues.
It is encouraged that you acquire a testosterone test for males if you feel you are suffering from this imbalance.
What Is Testosterone?
Testosterone is one of the leading sex hormones in males. Although it’s present in females, it is much smaller than in males.
The hormone is a natural androgen produced in the testicles. There are two classes of testosterone, one that is free and the other that binds to proteins.
Why Is It Important?
Testosterone is one of the main drivers behind puberty changes experienced by males. The following are some of the changes the hormone is responsible for:
· Deepening of the voice
· Growth of facial and pubic hair
· Enlargement of the testicles and penis
· Increasing libido
· Higher sperm production
· Increasing height
· Fat and muscle distribution
What Happens if Testosterone Levels Decline?
Men tend to produce smaller hormone amounts with age and by following certain lifestyle habits. Although symptoms of low testosterone tend to vary across age groups, here are a couple of telltale signs to look out for:
· Low libido
· Fatigue and tiredness
· Erectile dysfunction
· Irregular sleep cycle
How Does It Get Diagnosed?
A testosterone test for male is a testing method used by doctors to check for testosterone levels in your blood. Since this condition can be due to several reasons and comorbid conditions, different patients require different tests.
How It’s Done?
The hormone tests are essentially blood tests carried out in the mornings since that is when your testosterone levels are elevated. First, blood is drawn, using a small needle, from your vein either in your arm or finger.
Before the test, though, it’s likely that your doctor will take your history and carry out a physical examination to look out for signs. This is an excellent time to let your doctor know of any medications or herbs you’re taking.
Your doctor may call you in on a different day for another test. This helps them gauge a better idea of your average testosterone levels.
What do the Results Mean?
Once your test results have come, your doctor will let you know where your testosterone levels lie on the spectrum. Doctors have agreed on a range they’ve devised for different age groups, to which they compare your levels.
You may also be asked to get some of the following tests done:
Biopsy – A sample of the tissue lining of your testicles is taken using an endoscope and studied for testicular cancer.
DHEAS – This test checks for possible tumors in the adrenal glands.
Androstenedione – This test checks whether your adrenal glands and testicles are functioning properly.