Low Testosterone (Low-T) (cont.)
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What is low testosterone (low-T)?
Low testosterone is a term used by doctors to describe an abnormal level of the hormone testosterone. When appropriately measured, low testosterone is considered to be below 300 ng/dl in male patients, although some doctors suggest the normal range is 270 – 1070 ng/dl. Other terms for low-T include hypogonadism (primary, secondary and tertiary, depending on the cause of low-T) and testosterone deficiency (TD).
Testosterone is a steroid hormone made in the testes of males and the ovaries of females and is largely responsible for formation and maintenance of male sex characteristics, including both the larger bone and muscle development seen in males. The testosterone levels in humans are regulated by hormones released from the brain; in males the hypothalamus and pituitary glands in the brain increase testosterone during puberty and male characteristics develop (for example, penile enlargement, facial hair, interest in sex).
Although the large majority of low testosterone problems centers on adult males, low-T is not confined to male adults. However, the definition and characterization of low-T in women is less clear than for adult men.
Testosterone production is part of the body's endocrine system.
Illustration of the Endocrine System
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/17/2012
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