Testosterone is also a crucial female sex hormone, not just a male hormone. Total hormone optimization means restoring the natural balance of all hormones to the levels of our physical and mental peaks. For women this includes testosterone. Even though many women take estrogen and progesterone they still may not feel like their youthful selves. This is due to lack of another sexual hormone- testosterone. Even though testosterone is widely known as a male hormone, it is also critically important for women. It plays a crucial role in the physical and emotional health of women. Only the safe natural testosterone should be used and is available from specialty compounding pharmacies.
Testosterone is produced both in the ovaries and adrenal glands and is an important hormone for natural female sexual development. Women also lose their libido as they age which is often secondary to loss of testosterone. Lack of testosterone also contributes to many of the localized symptoms of menopause such as vaginal dryness, vaginal irritation, decreased orgasmic potential and sexual responsiveness. Replenishment of testosterone in women contributes to the enhancement of sexual drive, relief of menopausal symptoms, restoration of energy, strengthening of bones/prevention of osteoporosis, and improvement of an overall sense of well-being and zest for life.
Older patients commonly complain that their skin becomes thin, especially on their arms and hands. Testosterone can alleviate this as it increases collagen and elastin formation. Testosterone can also strengthen muscles, bones, tendons and joints, which is of extreme importance as we age.
In addition to this, testosterone can make massive contributions to body composition. It not only enhances muscle growth (which facilitates metabolism and fat loss) but also directly enhances lipolysis (fat loss). This creates not only a better physique but diminishes the risks of heart disease and improves overall mortality by helping eliminate inflammatory fat tissue. Many physicians and women remain unaware that testosterone is just as important for protecting against bone loss as estrogen! Treatment with even a small amount of testosterone can make incredible differences that many women have not been able to enjoy for years.
In summary, testosterone contributes to improvement in muscle mass, strength, endurance, decreased fat, better exercise tolerance, enhancement of well-being and mood. It also contributes to increased bone density and prevention of osteoporosis, as well as improvement in skin tone, and increased libido and sexual performance. It prolongs the quality of life by slowing the diseases of aging such as cardiovascular disease by decreasing cholesterol and increasing HDL, and enhancing fat loss. Testosterone is a memory enhancer and protects against the formation of Alzheimer’s disease. Clearly it is equally as important and beneficial to females as well as to males. A recent study in JAMA explored all the benefits of testosterone and called it “cutting edge medicine.” The New England Journal of Medicine reviewed testosterone replacement for women and found it the best therapy for improving energy along with estrogen and progesterone.