"Male menopause" is a layman’s term used to describe decreasing testosterone levels related to aging. In female menopause, ovulation and hormone production abruptly ends but with men, it’s much more gradual.
Dr. Machelle Seibel, editor of My Menopause Magazine and EmpowHER Medical Advisory Board member said, “after about age 30, testosterone normally drops about one to one and half percent a year. So by the time a man is 70, he’s going to have about half a much testosterone as he did when he was thirty.”
Dr. Irwin Goldstein, also a member of EmpowHER's Medical Board, Director of San Diego Sexual Medicine at Alvarado Hospital and Clinical Professor of Surgery at University of California at San Diego, stated that testosterone, estrogen and progesterone – in both genders – play huge roles in the health of people.
“Which is why we’re so healthy when we’re adults and why we’re not so healthy when we’re in our menopausal stages,” said Goldstein.
"It's like puberty in reverse," Jed Diamond, author of "Male Menopause" told Discovery Health. “Like puberty, the changes male menopause wreaks in aging men are 'hormonal, psychological, interpersonal, social, sexual and spiritual.'”
Changes in sexual function might include erectile dysfunction, reduced sexual desire, fewer spontaneous erections, and infertility. Patients with low testosterone often experience insomnia and disturbed sleep.
Various physical changes can include increased body fat, reduced muscle bulk, strength and endurance. Men with low testosterone are also at more risk for osteoporosis.
Low testosterone might also contribute to decreased motivation and self-confidence. Men might feel depressed or have trouble with their memory or concentrating.
It's important to note that some of these symptoms are a normal part of aging. Others can be caused by various underlying factors including medication side effects, thyroid problems and depression.