Male Hormonal Disorders
Erectile dysfunction (ED) refers to the consistent inability to achieve or maintain an erection for sexual intercourse. ED can be treated at any age, however, the occurrence of ED is increasingly common as the person ages, but should not be considered a natural part of aging. In older men, there may be physical or medical conditions that contribute to ED, including a variety of diseases, physical injury or side effects from prescription medications. Psychological factors and certain life choices such as smoking, obesity, stress, anxiety, guilt and fear of poor sexual performance can all contribute to ED.
Enlarged male breasts (gynecomastia) affects nearly 40-60% of men, often with no known cause.This condition can be highly embarrassing as well as physically uncomfortable. Men who feel self-conscious about enlarged breasts may seek breast reduction surgery. The procedure removes fat and/or glandular tissue from the breasts, and in some cases excess skin as well. The result is a flatter, firmer chest.
Testosterone Deficiency (Hypogonadism)
The hormone testosterone is the definitive male hormone. While this substance is present in women as well,its concentration in men is much higher and more important for proper functioning as well as development. Low testosterone (or male hypogonadism) can be debilitating to both pubescent males and adult men. There are many causes of low testosterone in males, including:
- Genetic factors (Turner syndrome, XXY)
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Infection or bleeding near pituitary
- Excess iron
- Natural aging process (also known as andropause or male menopause)
These causes can be further classified as Primary, Congenital, Acquired or Central. These subsets differ from what part of the endocrine system they affect, or how they have manifested within the body. In some cases, the classifications overlap.
Most treatments deal with replacing the testosterone in relatively safe amounts, not exceeding normal levels of concentration. There have been new improvements in Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators (SERMs) such as Clomifene which block the binding of estrogen to its receptors. This can help restore normal testosterone levels in the male body and reduce symptoms as well.
Female Hormonal Disorders
Amenorrhea is a condition that involves the absence of menstrual periods. Some women may never start having a period, while others may stop suddenly. While amenorrhea is a symptom and not a disease, it can be worrisome for many women. But this condition can usually be treated by identifying and treating the underlying cause.
An absent menstrual period can usually be treated by making simple life changes. This is not usually a serious condition, but you should still seek medical attention if you do not get a regular menstrual period.
Hirsutism is the excess growth of coarse, unwanted body hair on women. This condition causes women to grow body hair on the face, chest, back or other body parts where men typically grow hair. Hirsutism affects as many as 10 percent of women in the United States.
Hirsutism occurs as a result of excessive androgen levels in the body, which may be caused by a variety of factors. These factors may include polycystic ovary syndrome, tumors, Cushing's syndrome, or certain medications. Hirsutism can also occur with no identifiable cause.
Many women going through menopause suffer from a wide range of symptoms including irregular bleeding, hot flashes, insomnia, night sweats, fatigue, depression and more. There are several treatment options available to help relieve these symptoms, and our doctors can help you decide which option is best for you.
Prescription medication with estrogen and progesterone, known as hormone replacement therapy, is a popular treatment for women to treat symptoms of menopause and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Patients can also seek treatment for their individual symptoms, and should maintain an active and healthy life to help feel their best.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
PCOS (also called Stein-Leventhal Syndrome) is the most common endocrine disorder among reproductive-age women. It is characterized by chronic inability to ovulate (anovulation) and elevated male hormones (hyperandrogenism) resulting from an imbalance of hormones in the ovaries that disrupts egg production. Symptoms include infrequent or absent ovulation or periods, excess facial or body hair, male pattern baldness, acne and infertility. It is common for patients to also suffer from other endocrine problems such as insulin resistance and diabetes.
Primary Ovarian Insufficiency (POI)
Primary ovarian insufficiency (POI) is the premature onset of symptoms of menopause in women younger than 40 years old. It causes the menstrual period to stop or occur very irregularly, infertility, hot flashes and night sweats. Some level of function will remain in the ovaries, and although a woman’s chances are small, she may be able to become pregnant.
A diagnosis of POI is usually established by taking a medical history, performing a physical exam and testing to measure hormone levels and check for chromosomal abnormalities. Treatment generally includes hormone replacement therapy to ensure the patient receives all of the hormones her body should be producing on its own. This can help prevent bone loss as well as some of the symptoms of menopause.