As a key male hormone, testosterone is involved in a variety of physiological functions in the body. It regulates the fertility; body mass, insulin sensitivity, blood cell development and cholesterol metabolism. The hormone is also responsible for various masculine characteristics such as body hair and development of reproductive system. This hormone is also present in very small amounts in females. It is released by the testis on the signal from pituitary gland which triggers its release.
What Is A Man’s Normal Testosterone Level?
The normal level of testosterone varies with age. At the age of 20, the level of testosterone is highest which then declines with age. The normal level of testosterone is in the range of about 280 nanogram per deciliter to 1100 nanogram per deciliter. It is important to know the range of the hormone as per the age as it will help in determining whether the reduction in level of testosterone is due to age or there is any underlying disorder. Most of the testosterone is attached to proteins in blood known as bound testosterone while the testosterone, which is not attached is known as free testosterone. The bounded testosterone may be bound with sex binding hormone globulin or to albumin. Testosterone is tested by taking small amount of blood and the sample is sent to the laboratory for quantitative chemical analysis. The result of the test has different inferences on the basis of age and sex of patients. Thus, the low level of testosterone has different meaning for a man, a woman and a boy.
It is interesting to note that while the amount of the total testosterone may be in the range, but the free testosterone available to the body is low and the body may experience the symptoms of low testosterone.
Symptoms For Abnormal Level Of Testosterone
The symptoms experienced due to low testosterone levels are different in man, woman and a boy. The condition of low level of testosterone in males is termed as hypogonadism. The symptoms of the low testosterone in males are as follows:
Decreased Body Hair: Testosterone is responsible for the growth of body hairs including moustaches and beard. Low levels reduce the body hair.
Delayed Puberty – Testosterone is responsible for the puberty in males. Low levels delay the puberty.
Decreased Muscle Mass – There is a reduction in muscle mass in the males who have reduced testosterone levels.
The symptoms of high levels of testosterone in females have the following symptoms:
- Irregular menstrual periods.
- Polycystic ovary syndrome.
- Development of facial or body hairs.
- Deepened voice.
The testosterone is a steroidal hormone which comes under the category called as androgens. Testosterone is responsible for the growth of various characteristics typical to males. It helps in the growth of male reproductive organs such as testicles and penis. It helps in increasing the height and increases metabolism. It is also involved in deepening the voice. It is responsible for the development of facial, pubic and body hairs. After achieving puberty, this hormone is responsible for sex drive. It helps in increasing the bone mineral density and also increases the production of red blood cells. The testosterone is produced by the Leydig cells which are present in the testicles. Luteinizing hormone and Follicle stimulating hormone of the pituitary gland are responsible for the number of Leydig cells. The amount of testosterone produced is also regulated by follicle stimulating hormone.
Testosterone is dominantly a male hormone and is responsible for developing the masculine characteristics. Thus, the abnormal level of this hormone may cause the symptoms such as low body hair, infertility, erectile dysfunction and low muscle mass in the males while high testosterone level in female may cause infertility, polycystic ovary syndrome, deepened voice, irregular menstrual cycles and increased body hair. The normal range of testosterone is 280 ng/dl to 1100 ng/dl.
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