Is it true that men also have menopause? Is this normal or not? When to see a doctor and is it worth it at all?

What is male menopause and how to deal with it

Menopause is a phenomenon that is strongly associated with a certain period in a woman's life, when menstruation finally stops, which usually occurs after 49-50 years. However, now you can easily find a lot of articles on the Internet, where the topic of the so-called "male menopause" is discussed. Does it really exist and can an analogue of "menopause" occur in men?

What is menopause

Menopause is the physiological cessation of menstruation due to the fact that the ovaries stop working or decrease their functioning. During physiological menopause, there are several transitional stages leading to a gradual attenuation of female reproductive function. Their duration is, as a rule, 1-5 years, after which the production of female reproductive organs stops completely.

It is impossible to apply the term "menopause" to age-related attenuation of sexual function in men, since in this case physiological processes occur differently. In most men, by the age of 60, a smooth, gradual decrease in testosterone production by Leydig cells, which are located in the testes, begins. There are no stages in this process, besides this age, as a rule, a man already has a baggage of chronic, including cardiovascular diseases .

The fact is that men during their life are not protected from the development of such diseases, unlike women. A woman, while her reproductive period lasts, is partially protected from a number of diseases (heart disease, blood vessels, osteoporosis, etc.) due to the high level of estrogen. But with the onset of menopause, the situation changes dramatically, and these diseases begin to attack women as well. A man, throughout his life, gradually accumulates factors, especially bad habits, which contribute to the development of these diseases by old age.

Maybe it's testosterone

Men tend to blame age-related decline in testosterone for health problems, forgetting about the consequences of an unhealthy lifestyle - smoking , alcohol consumption, unhealthy diet, unhealthy sleep and rest, lack of physical activity and a sedentary lifestyle, constant stress, etc.

Some men even resort to hormone replacement therapy (HRT). HRT significantly improves the quality of life - but especially in postmenopausal women, because this treatment compensates for the absolute absence of sex hormones, replacing them with artificial analogues.In men, the baseline concentration of testosterone, as a rule, is maintained, and therefore HRT will not help get rid of problems caused by deteriorating health. For example, from erectile function due to atherosclerosis, which leads to a decrease in the filling of blood vessels of the cavernous bodies, which provided an erection.

And if a man ate well throughout his life , was able to give up bad habits, is engaged in moderate, age-appropriate physical activity? In this case, at 60 and even at 70 years old, he may not notice a slight decrease in testosterone concentration at all, if he is somatically healthy.

This is why the term "male menopause" should not be considered in serious medical texts. The medical specialty "gerontology" deals with the problem of age-related changes, including in the male body.

Maybe it's testosterone

What men complain about

First of all, men are worried about a decrease in sex drive and the occurrence of erectile dysfunction - oftenthey think it is low testosterone levels, although unhealthy lifestyles, smoking, alcohol, heart disease or diabetes all contribute.

Men also notice increased fatigue, which is expressed in a lack of energy or a feeling of chronic fatigue, decreased concentration, memory impairment and cognitive function: tasks that were previously easy and habitual now require more mental effort.

Changes occur in the emotional sphere - a constant feeling of sadness, sadness, lack of a sense of joy or happiness even from those activities that were previously enjoyable. Insomnia and restlessness appear at night.

Men also complain with age of a decrease in physical strength and volume of muscles, weight gain - which, however, is understandable if a man did not pay special attention to sports and led a sedentary lifestyle.

How to understand where the cause of health problems lies

For, so that a man can simply and effectively assess the cause of his age-related problems, he needs to undergo a general blood test and a study of blood biochemical parameters (glucose, glycated hemoglobin, lipid profile), as well as a PSA analysis.

Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is a protein enzyme produced by the prostate gland in men. The analysis for prostate-specific antigen is used as a marker of the general condition of the prostate tissue. An increase in the level of total PSA is characteristic of prostatitis , prostate adenoma, infectious processes in the urinary tract and prostate tumors.

Thus, if deviations of these indicators from the norm are detected, a man should immediately contact his attending physician who will conduct a full diagnosis and prescribe therapy - but not HRT. The effect of properly selected therapy can significantly improve the quality of a man's life, including in the reproductive sphere.