Testosterone for Women

“I feel so much like a woman again. I have plenty of energy and sex is like what it was at age 20. ….Suzanne Somers in her book The Sexy Years”

Testosterone is also a female sex hormone, not just a male hormone. Total hormone replacement means restoring the natural balance of all hormones to the levels of our physical and mental peaks. For women this also includes testosterone. Even though many women take estrogen and progesterone, they still do not feel like their youthful selves. This is secondary to the lack of another sex hormone — testosterone. Even though testosterone is widely known as a male hormone, it is also a critically important hormone for women in that it plays a crucial role in the physical and emotional health of women.  Too many women mistakenly think testosterone is only for men and resists the benefit of taking testosterone.  Even many of the doctors who may prescribe estrogen and progesterone but failed to prescribe testosterone for women.  The pharmaceutical industry was the first to realize the importance of this, and they have begun to market a combination estrogen and testosterone tablet which is, unfortunately, synthetic. The synthetic hormones can adversely affect the liver and should not be used. The safe, natural testosterone only should be used and is available from specialty compounding pharmacies.

Testosterone is produced both in the ovaries and adrenal glands of women and is an important hormone for normal female sexual development. Women also lose their libido as they age which is secondary to loss of serum testosterone. Lack of testosterone also contributes to symptoms of menopause and lack of libido and sexual responsiveness. Replenishment of testosterone in women contributes to the enhancement of sexual drive, relief of menopausal symptoms, restoration of energy, strengthening of bone, prevention of osteoporosis and improvement of an overall sense of well-being and zest for life. Many women do not realize that testosterone improves their skin, muscles, bones, tendons, and joints. Older patients commonly complain about their skin becoming so thin, primarily on their arms and hands. Most women are unaware that the best hormone for the skin to prevent thinning and wrinkles and increase collagen and elastin is testosterone.

Many physicians and women remain unaware that testosterone is much better for protecting against bone loss than estrogen, yet it is seldom mentioned as a treatment. A small amount of replacement with testosterone gel can make an incredible difference that many women have not been able to enjoy up until now. The correct dose of testosterone replacement will be determined by body weight, age and blood levels.  Testosterone supplementation helps reduce obesity, raise lean body mass, normalize blood clotting and raise the good HDL cholesterol, all of which decrease the incidence of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. It also prevents cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s Disease even better than estrogen in women. A recent medical study showed testosterone reduced C-Reactive Protein levels (CRP) a measurement of inflammation in blood vessels. Testosterone protected against heart attacks and progression of heart disease. Yes, testosterone has been demonstrated to increase lifespan. A recent study from the Annals of Internal Medicine demonstrated that men with the higher levels of testosterone lived the longevity.

In summary, testosterone is a hormone secreted by the ovaries, adrenal glands and testes. It is both a male and female hormone. It contributes to increased muscle mass, strength, endurance, decreased fat, increased exercise tolerance, enhancement of well- being and mood. There is an increase in bone density and prevention of osteoporosis, improvement in skin tone and healing capacity, 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. Testosterone is a memory enhancer and protects against the formation of Alzheimer’s disease. It is equally as important and beneficial in females as well as in males. A recent study in JAMA explored all the benefits of testosterone and called it cutting edge medicine. The NEJM reviewed testosterone replacement for women and found it the best therapy for improving energy, along with estrogen and progesterone. Don’t confuse natural testosterone with the synthetic testosterone analogs. Use only the natural testosterone and not the synthetic. It’s healthy for you and you’ll feel good too.