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Male Menopause: Myth or Reality?

Aging can wreak havoc on the mental, emotional, and physical condition of both men and women. Until recently, most people ignored the physical manifestations of hormonal fluctuations in aging males. The popular consensus was that men go through mid-life crises and women experience hot flashes and mood swings. Researchers and scientific investigators must give male-specific health issues more than a token nod and address them in significant ways.

Articles and blogs from healthcare professionals and laypeople increasingly mention the term male menopause.  If a male condition exists that presents similar symptoms to female menopause, medical researchers and the movers and shakers in the academic science community should give it a new name. The Greek prefix men (gen. menos) means month; hence, the term menopause refers to a pause in a woman’s monthly menstruation somewhere around age 50. Perhaps virpause (vir; man, husband, hero; Latin) would describe the condition as it relates to males more concisely.

The Toll of Aging – Not Just For Women

Aging can wreak havoc on the mental, emotional, and physical condition of both men and women.  Until recently, most people ignored the physical manifestations of hormonal fluctuations in aging males. The popular consensus was that men go through mid-life crises and women experience hot flashes and mood swings.  Researchers and scientific investigators must give male-specific health issues more than a token nod and address them in significant ways.

Men – Come Get Your Hot Flashes & Embarrassing Physical Changes

As men age, their hormone levels follow more irregular cyclic fluctuations. Even if slight, these changes in cyclic patterns result in numerous unpleasant symptoms, such as hot flashes, breast enlargement, erectile dysfunction, and depression.  Women learn about the imminent onset of these unpleasant symptoms early in life and have time to prepare both physically and mentally.  However, men cannot expect, or prepare for, physiological changes about which no one warned them.  The intensity, duration, and frequency of symptoms vary with the individual man.

Next Steps

Ask your physician about hormone fluctuations due to aging and what physical and mental changes to expect.  Conduct your own research as well and keep a journal where you can record the date, type, and duration of symptoms.  This way you won’t forget the important details that your doctor will use to properly and effectively treat your symptoms.  He can order specific lab tests of your blood sample to verify whether your hormone levels need adjusting.  If tests confirm a hormone imbalance, he can prescribe medication that effectively manage these troubling symptoms as well as counsel you regarding lifestyle changes that may help.

Virpause – The Prepared Man Has the Advantage

Men, talk frankly to your doctor about your aging and mid-life concerns.  If he does not seem to take your inquiries seriously, find another healthcare provider.  You deserve a healthy and happy mid-life and beyond.  Grab it!

Want more info on a variety of male sexual health topics? Check out this great blog dedicated to men’s specific issues:  Men’s Sexual Health Blog.

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