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Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2011 Apr;25(2):303-19. doi: 10.1016/j.beem.2010.11.004.

Endocrinology of the aging male.

Author information

  • 1Epidemiology, New England Research Institutes, Inc., 9 Galen Street, Watertown, MA 02472, United States. aaraujo@neriscience.com

Abstract

The endocrinology of the aging male is complex, with multiple hormones along the hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular (HPT) axis interacting with one another in feedback. As men age, there is a small and progressive (not precipitous, as in women) decline in several sex hormones, in particular testosterone and dehydroepiandrosterone, and related increases in luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, and sex hormone-binding globulin. The importance of these changes is wide-ranging because of the ubiquitous role of sex hormones in male physiology. This chapter discusses the endocrinology of the aging male. We provide an overview of the regulation of the HPT axis with an emphasis on the changes that occur with aging and the measurement of gonadal steroids, including hormone pulsatility, within-subject and circadian variations. The difficulties of assessing the symptoms of late-onset hypogonadism are highlighted. There is a comprehensive discussion of the epidemiology of sex hormone changes, including their age associations, prevalence of symptomatic hypogonadism, secular changes, risk factors, and the association of sex hormones with outcomes.

Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
21397200
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3073592
Free PMC Article

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