Male Menopause Reviewed: Men’s Andropause Guide (Symptoms And Treatment)

Most of the world is well-acquainted with the word “menopause”. However, it is often associated with women and a period that marks the downfall of a woman’s fertility.

However, some doctors are recently beginning to take notice that menopause may not just be a woman’s thing. So, is there something like male menopause too? Yes!

So, what is male menopause and who is affected by it? How do you know, as a man, that you’re going through male menopause?

Well, let’s find out everything there is that you need to know about male menopause below:

What is Male Menopause?

Male menopause is a common term often used for the lesser-known scientific term “andropause”. Andropause or male menopause is described as an age-related decrease in T-levels and the deterioration in the body’s ability to produce optimal levels of testosterone in a MAAB.

MAAB stands for males assigned at birth, which means male menopause critically impacts only cisgender men.

It involves a sharp decline in testosterone production in older cisgender men, unusually those aged 50 or older, and is often associated with hypogonadism.

Now, let’s understand male menopause in detail:

What Are The Two Hormones Impacted By Male Menopause?

When men hit menopause, two hormones in the male body are significantly impacted by the same. In fact, one can say, that male menopause is brought by the decrease in these two hormones as well.

Now, what are these two hormones and how are they important in relevance to male health? Let’s find out below:

Testosterone In Men’s Health

Testosterone is a male hormone that is optimally present in men featuring healthy sexual health and usually under the age of 30 (and have entered puberty).

Testosterone, being an androgen hormone, is the male equivalent to estrogen in women. It plays a critical role in fuelling the change in secondary, sexual characteristics that define a biological male such as:

  • Growth of body hair
  • Change in sexual functioning
  • Deepening of the voice
  • Increase in muscle growth and muscle mass

However, as men age, and especially when they hit the threshold of 30, testosterone levels begin to drop by an average of 1 percent every year. The percentage may be higher in men with poor sexual health.

By the time a man hits 50, testosterone levels see a drastic decline which may onset of male menopause.

In fact, once a man hits male menopause, he may see an even sharper decline in testosterone levels with several symptoms that are recurrent with low levels of testosterone in the body.

Related: Best Testosterone Booster Supplements for Men

Other Androgens In Men’s Health

Although testosterone is the most critical androgen that is directly involved with male menopause, other sex hormones may play a role in male menopause too.

But, first, what are androgens? Androgens are a group of sex hormones, typically produced in men that help with the growth and enhancement of sexual characteristics in men such as lengthening of the vocal cord, sperm count and motility, genitalia, etc.

  • Androgens besides testosterone include:
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA).
  • DHEA sulfate (DHEA-S).
  • Dihydrotestosterone (DHT).

These hormones also play a role in the onset of male menopause and although the research is still limited, it is believed that a significant imbalance in one or more of these hormones may lead to male menopause in older men.

It may also lead to other complications such as erectile dysfunction, prostate cancer, BPH, etc.

What Are The Symptoms Of Male Menopause?

How do you know you’ve hot menopause or are on the track of hitting it, often known as male perimenopause?

Just like women, men often have symptoms of male menopause as well as perimenopause; they are just unable to identify these.

Male menopause can bring about certain physical, sexual, and psychological symptoms that often get worse when the man has completely entered the phase of menopause.

These symptoms include:

  • Low levels of energy
  • Bouts of frustration
  • Hot flashes
  • Low self-esteem and self-confidence
  • Reduced focus levels
  • Difficulty in weight management
  • Physical weakness
  • Gynecomastia
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Infertility and low sex drive
  • Reduced muscle mass
  • Decrease in bone density and risk of osteoporosis
  • Depression and decrease in motivation
  • Insomnia
  • Decreased testicular size
  • Swollen and tender breasts
  • Loss of body hair

These symptoms may start appearing well before a man hits 50 and are often called symptoms of male perimenopause. If you’re able to identify these symptoms while you still have time, you may be able to prevent entering male menopause, altogether.

How Does Male Menopause/Andropause Impact Your Life?

Below is an overview of how andropause impacts a man’s life:

Physical Impact

Male menopause, also known as andropause, can have various physical impacts on a man’s life. One of the most significant changes is a decline in testosterone levels.

As testosterone levels decrease, men may experience a loss of muscle strength, increased body fat, reduced stamina, and decreased libido.

Additionally, some men may also experience hot flashes, night sweats, and sleep disturbances similar to those experienced by women during menopause.

Emotional Impact

Male menopause can also have a significant emotional impact on a man’s life. The hormonal changes associated with andropause can lead to mood swings, irritability, anxiety, and even depression.

These emotional changes may be caused by the fluctuating levels of testosterone, which can affect neurotransmitters in the brain responsible for regulating mood and emotions.

Men may also experience a loss of self-esteem and a sense of masculinity due to the physical changes they are experiencing. This emotional impact can strain relationships and affect a man’s overall well-being.

Sexual Impact

One of the most noticeable impacts of male menopause is the changes in sexual function. As testosterone levels decline, men may experience a decrease in sexual desire or libido. They may also have difficulty achieving and maintaining erections, leading to erectile dysfunction.

These changes can be distressing for men and may lead to a decrease in sexual satisfaction and intimacy within their relationships.

It is important for men experiencing these symptoms to discuss them with a healthcare professional who can provide guidance and potential treatment options.

Overall Quality of Life

Male menopause can have a significant impact on a man’s overall quality of life. The physical, emotional, and sexual changes associated with andropause can affect daily functioning, work performance, and personal relationships.

Fatigue, decreased strength, and mood swings can make it challenging to engage in activities that were once enjoyable. Additionally, the impact on sexual function and intimacy can strain relationships and lead to feelings of frustration and dissatisfaction

What Are The Causes Of Andropause?

Here are some of the major causes of andropause:

Decreasing Levels of Testosterone

The most common cause of male menopause is the gradual decrease in testosterone levels in the body as men start to age. The lowered amounts of this androgen hormone can cause men to enter male menopause later in their life.

High Levels of SHBG

Another factor that worsens the decline of testosterone levels in the body is the rise in another hormone called sex hormone binding globulin or SHBG. It pulls free testosterone which is usable by the blood and makes it obsolete.

This means that when testosterone is bound to SHBG, it is not usable by the body and can not offer any male health benefits.

Mid-Life Crisis

As men enter middle age, it is common to go through a midlife crisis which is brought on by several psychological issues such as mental stress, exhaustion, depression, anxiety, etc.

Mid-life crisis can often lead to male menopause and stems from a lack of sleep, poor nutrition, alcohol, and tobacco consumption, lack of physical activities, and low self-esteem.

Lifestyle Problems

Lifestyle problems such as unregulated blood glucose, an increase in depression and anxiety levels, and excessive use of tobacco and alcohol can worsen your health.

Eventually, these problems can lead to male menopause later in life. Thus, it is important to be mindful of your lifestyle and how you treat your body.

Delayed Onset Of Hypogonadism

Sometimes, male menopause or andropause may not be related to lifestyle or psychological factors at all – but rather hypogonadism where the testes produce less androgens, including testosterone.

Delayed onset of hypogonadism can lead to several physical issues such as delayed puberty, decreased size of testicles, sheer voice, etc. Men with type 2 diabetes or those struggling with weight are particularly vulnerable to this condition. However, it may also be present since birth.

The delayed onset of hypogonadism can thus, impact testosterone levels, which in turn, can initiate the start of male menopause.

Although the condition is rare, if you think you are showing symptoms of delayed onset of hypogonadism, it is best to reach out to your doctor.

Treatment and Prevention Options For Andropause/Male Menopause

Prevention options for male menopause usually work best when you haven’t completely entered the menopause phase.

Thus, to prevent or prolong this, you can try several things. Starting with supplements that help stimulate natural production of testosterone in the body, you can also benefit from exercises that work to boost levels of testosterone in men.

Cutting down on stress and abandoning or limiting the use of alcohol and tobacco can help to get your testosterone levels back up.

It is also ideal to seek good nutrition. If you are unsure about where to start, you can seek help from a certified nutritionist who can help you create and customize meals that can help improve overall health while improving T-levels in the body.

A good place to start with nutrition is to ensure that you are consuming enough zinc and magnesium because the deficiency of one or both is often related to a dip in testosterone levels.

Treatment Options:

There are several treatment options you can resort to if you are already beyond taking preventative measures or they are just not working out for you.

The usual treatment for male menopause or andropause is TRT or Testosterone Replacement Therapy. TRT includes replacing the testosterone in the blood and there are both risks and benefits associated with this invasive procedure.

Here are a few types of Testosterone Replacement Therapy that you can discuss with your healthcare professional to find which option works the best for you:

Skin Patches

Skin patches allow the individual to receive testosterone through the skin at a slow and steady rate. Skin patches are applied on the back, thighs, upper arms, and abdomen on the dry areas.

Transdermal Gel

Transdermal gels are highly-absorbable gels that are applied directly on the epidermis. These gels are usually applied on the arms of the individuals receiving TRT.

Nasal Gel

Nasal gels are applied on the walls of the nostril. The process is similar to using nasal sprays. However, if you develop symptoms of rhintis with this method of TRT, consult with your GP immediately.


Capsules are one of the most convenient forms of TRT. These need to be taken daily. However, these are not a viable option for individuals with poor liver health, liver disease, cardiovascular or kidney problems, and/or too much calcium in their blood.

Testosterone Injections

This method offers a steady and fast increase in testosterone levels in the body, however, they come with certain side effects such as severe mood swings.

The treatment involves injecting testosterone in the muscle every 1 to 2 weeks in the form of testosterone cypionate.

A Look At The Key Differences Between Male Menopause and Female Menopause

Below we will explore the key differences between male and female menopause.

Difference 1: The Consequences Of Hitting Menopause

For women, the onset of menopause usually marks the end of their biological clock. Their ability to conceive drops significantly and is generally irreversible. However, researchers are currently exploring the possibility of creating temporary fertility for women who have gone through menopause.

On the other hand, andropause, often referred to as male menopause, does not have the same effect on fertility as female menopause does. While it is commonly believed that andropause may cause impotence or erectile dysfunction, the truth is that it does not inhibit a man’s ability to be fertile.

Despite a reduction in testosterone levels, men can still produce viable semen for fertility purposes. This is one of the most significant differences between menopause and andropause.

Difference 2: Period Of Change

One of the primary differences between male and female menopause is the period of change. Female menopause is characterized by a significant and rapid decrease in hormones associated with this condition. Once menopause is identified, there is typically a noticeable drop in estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and follicle-stimulating hormones within a few months, eventually leading to the cessation of ovulation altogether.

On the other hand, the hormonal changes associated with male menopause, or andropause, occur at a much slower pace. The rate of change in hormone levels in men is gradual and can take years until a significant amount of loss occurs, resulting in symptoms associated with this condition.

Unlike women who have a clear-cut end to their reproductive years, some men may never reach the point of experiencing any serious symptoms of andropause.

Difference 3: Who It Affects

Another difference between male and female menopause is who it affects. Female menopause is an inevitable process that all women will experience at some point in their lives. It occurs due to the natural decline of reproductive hormones, particularly estrogen and progesterone.

Typically, menopause occurs in women between the ages of 40 and 60, with some experiencing it earlier or later. The average age of menopause varies across different regions. In Europe, the average age is 55, while North America reports an average age of 51.4. Latin America and Asia have average ages of 48.6 and 51.1, respectively.

On the other hand, andropause, or male menopause, does not affect all men. It is not a universal condition like female menopause. In fact, most men do not experience a significant or rapid decrease in testosterone to the point of being diagnosed with andropause.

Final Verdict

Let’s say you did enter andropause or male menopause. What now? Is it the end of the world? Certainly not. Although male menopause can bring about various negative changes in a man’s life, the majority of these changes can be managed with healthy living and a quality lifestyle.

If you are concerned about andropause and its impact on your daily life, it is ideal to consult a general physician to filter through possible course of action toward better living and sexual health.

You can also resort to effective supplements that can help you manage the symptoms of male menopause. In fact, several male health supplements also help bring back the vigor and stamina that you had in your golden days.

The takeaway here is that you need not suffer in silence. There’s a solution to everything, even male menopause!

Related: Best Testosterone Boosters for Erectile Dysfunction

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