Low testosterone levels are quite common among men. The deficiency of testosterone is largely the cause of why men experience erectile dysfunction (ED). There are many causes of why men may experience issues with ED. Here are a few:
- High stress levels
- Heart disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Excessive alcohol use
- Tobacco use
- High cholesterol
- Atherosclerosis (blood clots)
- High blood pressure
- Sleep apnea
- Reactions to particular medications
- And more
Age related testosterone levels tend to decrease at an average of 1% every year. Low testosterone levels usually cause sexual related issues such as low libido and of course erectile dysfunction. It is best to consult with your doctor concerning any issues you have with low libido or ED because there could be other underlying causes in addition to low testosterone.
The compound testosterone is measured with the conventional (US) unit ng/dl. According to research, about 1% of young men below the age of 45 have a total serum testosterone level below 250 ng/dl and about 20% of men considered healthy and over the age of 60 have levels below 250 ng/dl.
It has been determined that men under the age of 45 should have their testosterone levels tested as close to 7:00am as possible. The reason for this is because the total testosterone or TT for this age group tends to decline as the day progresses. R. Charles Welliver Jr., MD of Southern Illinois University in Springfield, and colleagues also reported that “Men older than 45 years of age with ED can have their TT drawn at any time before 2:00pm without fear of misleading results.” Regardless of age, testosterone levels for all men demonstrate the highest elevations during the morning hours or those closest to 8am and therefore should be tested then. It is also suggested than men with a TT of greater than 320 ng/dl be considered normal and do not need to undergo further testing for low testosterone levels. If levels display lower than 320 ng/dl the individual should be retested within a few weeks for accuracy. This will eliminate the possibility of temporary decreases in TT due to stress, illness, etc.
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