MEN are facing a ‘forgotten epidemic’, with hundreds of thousands suffering from the so-called manopause, a doctor has said.
The disorder is thought to be caused by low testosterone levels and its symptoms can include a low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, depression, poor concentration, obesity, loss of muscle mass and fatigue.
The good news is it can be easily treated with a simple hormone injection, oral treatment or gel.
Dr Jeff Foster, who runs TFJ Private GP Services in Leamington Spa, is urging any man suffering from these symptoms to request a blood test.
He said: ‘It is easy for many of these symptoms to be attributed to the stress of modern life and/or poor lifestyle choices, which is why the male menopause has been something that has often been dismissed by the general public and doctors alike.
‘However, there is now good evidence that the symptoms of the “manopause” are caused by a testosterone deficiency and need not be endured as part of the natural ageing process.’
Dr Foster added: ‘Patients need to stand up and proactively ask their doctors to screen for testosterone levels if they think they may have symptoms of the disease.
‘Between six and 12 per cent of the male population over the age of 40 are estimated to suffer with testosterone deficiency. It’s a forgotten epidemic.’
Testing for low testosterone is done via a simple blood test performed between 7-10:30am, when men naturally produce their highest levels of the hormone.
Dr Foster said testosterone therapy could reduce the risk of other diseases as well as massively improving quality of life.
He added: ‘Male menopause is no longer something that should be trivialised or ignored, and men should not feel ashamed or embarrassed about seeing their doctor to discuss the feelings of a loss of focus, sex drive, energy, or desire in their life.’