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Hormonal Disorders and Male Sexual Dysfunction

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Male sexual dysfunction is a broad term used to describe various problems that can reduce the frequency or intensity of male sexual activities.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Shaikh Sadaf

Published At October 19, 2022
Reviewed AtJanuary 22, 2024

Introduction:

Male sexual dysfunction is a common problem with serious psychological and physical factors. Male hormones affect a variety of bodily functions, including male sexuality, muscle mass, and energy levels. Therefore, hormonal disorders that affect the functioning of these hormones can also lead to sexual problems. Sexual dysfunctions in males may be caused by hormonal disorders as well as chronic conditions such as diabetes or heart disease. They may also be due to lifestyle factors such as increased stress or smoking. These physiological conditions can cause decreased libido, erectile dysfunction (ED), premature ejaculation (PE), and infertility.

What Are the Hormones That Are Responsible for Male Sexual Dysfunction?

  • Low testosterone levels.

  • Low estrogen levels.

  • Low DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) levels.

  • High prolactin levels.

  • High thyroid levels.

What Are the Types of Sexual Dysfunction?

Sexual dysfunction refers to difficulties experienced by an individual or a couple during any stage of normal sexual activity, including desire, arousal, or orgasm. There are various types of sexual dysfunction, and they can affect both men and women. Here are some common types:

  • Erectile Dysfunction (ED).

  • Premature Ejaculation (PE).

  • Delayed Ejaculation.

  • Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder (HSDD).

  • Female Sexual Arousal Disorder (FSAD).

  • Female Orgasmic Disorder (FOD).

  • Dyspareunia.

  • Vaginismus.

  • Anorgasmia.

What Are the Common Hormonal Disorders in Males?

A low libido, erectile dysfunction, infertility, and low sperm count are all possible symptoms of hormonal imbalance. Low testosterone is one of the men's most common causes of sexual problems. The main disorders that cause male sexual problems are hypogonadism, androgen insensitivity syndrome, and hyperprolactinemia.

  1. Hypogonadism: Failure in the production of hormones by the testes is known as hypogonadism. This causes the libido to decrease because there is not enough testosterone for normal sexual activity. A decrease in their production process leads to a decrease in sperm count as well. Infertility can occur if the condition is not treated over time.

  2. Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome (AIS): Androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS) is a genetic disorder that is present from birth and occurs almost exclusively among males. It is caused by a mutation in the androgen receptor gene. AIS is a disorder of sexual development that affects the reproductive system. In AIS, the body cannot use androgens and develop male sex characteristics at puberty, so affected individuals may appear female at birth or have ambiguous genitalia. However, they have XY chromosomes; when puberty begins, their bodies produce normal amounts of testosterone, but their body does not respond properly when they receive signals from testosterone or other male sex hormones called androgens; this results in little to no body hair on certain parts of the body like the face or chest area which makes people think are female.

  3. Hyperprolactinemia: Hyperprolactinemia is caused by too much prolactin hormone released into the bloodstream. Prolactin is a hormone that stimulates breast milk production and lactation. The pituitary gland produces prolactin, stored in the pituitary stalk at the base of the brain. Sexual dysfunction is one of many symptoms that can occur when there is too much prolactin in the system by lowering testosterone levels.

  4. Erectile Dysfunction: The most common type of sexual dysfunction is erectile dysfunction (ED), which refers to the inability to achieve an erection on demand and is fairly common among older men. Erectile dysfunction has many potential causes and can be attributed to hormonal imbalance in either partner, medication side effects, stress, or depression.

  5. Premature Ejaculation: Ejaculation, or the release of sperm, occurs before or in a short time after sexual intercourse without satisfying the partner. Many biological factors, including abnormal hormonal levels, cause premature ejaculation. Depression, anxiety, prostate infections, and urethritis contribute to premature ejaculation.

How Do Testosterone Levels Affect Male Sexual Function?

The male sex hormone (testosterone) is responsible for developing male sex characteristics like the growth of body hair, development of muscles, and deepening of the voice, as well as for sexual and reproductive functions in both males and females. A hormonal disorder can lead to a deficiency of testosterone, which is one of the most important hormones in males. Lack of testosterone can cause low sexual desire and erectile dysfunction in hypogonadism, and it affects both men and women. Also, hypothyroidism leads to low testosterone levels and sexual problems.

Some men have decreased interest in sex or inhibited sexual desire because of medications that affect their testosterone production or because they have health problems like diabetes or obesity that could cause erectile dysfunction. Symptoms of low testosterone levels include:

  • Low sex drive.

  • Difficulty in an erection.

  • Hair loss.

  • Weak bones.

  • Loss of muscle mass.

  • Breast tissue development.

  • Fertility problems.

Thyroid dysfunction can harm sex. Hypothyroidism or low thyroid levels can lead to diminished libido, decreased sperm count, and low testosterone levels, which in turn can lead to erectile dysfunction and infertility. The thyroid hormone is responsible for many functions in the body, including sexual function. The thyroid gland produces hormones that regulate metabolism and energy expenditure. Low levels of these hormones lead to fatigue, weight gain, and decreased sex drive.

How Are Male Sexual Dysfunction Treated?

Sexual problems can have numerous causes, and having a hormonal disorder is just one of them. If suspects that hormonal imbalances are affecting sexual health, it is necessary to discuss with the doctor any symptoms they may have so they can help diagnose the problem by taking a complete medical history, sexual history, medication, illnesses, or injuries and also by performing several tests to get on the right treatment plan for. Male sexual dysfunction can be treated in several ways. These include,

  • Medication (for example, testosterone injections).

  • Surgery (for example, penile implant surgery).

  • Exercise or behavioral therapy.

  • Sex therapy.

  • Psychotherapy.

  • Education and communication.

Conclusion:

Hormonal dysfunction can have a significant impact on sexual health. Sexual dysfunction is a common symptom of hormonal disorders, and treatment options are available to help regain sexual function. However, hormonal disorders do not necessarily cause male sexual dysfunction; there are many other factors at play here. Discuss with the doctor if you have any symptoms before taking anything into your own hands.

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Dr. Shaikh Sadaf
Dr. Shaikh Sadaf

Endocrinology

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hormonal imbalancemale sexual dysfunction
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