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Sex, Drive, and Sparkle: Is Testosterone the Missing Piece of Your Post-Menopause Puzzle?

Testosterone is an important hormone that plays a critical role in both men and women’s bodies. While it is often referred to as the male hormone, testosterone is also present in females and is essential for their overall health and wellbeing. During menopause, a woman’s body experiences a decline in oestrogen levels, which can lead to several uncomfortable symptoms such as hot flashes, vaginal dryness, mood swings, and decreased libido

Research has shown that testosterone can provide several benefits to women during menopause. It can improve relief of vasomotor symptoms, increase energy levels, enhance feelings of well-being, decrease breast tenderness, improve sexual desire, increase sexual sensitivity, and increase the frequency of coitus. However, it is essential to note that testosterone therapy can also lead to side effects such as acne, hair growth on the body, male-pattern baldness, and deepening of the voice.

During menopause, women may experience a decline in testosterone levels, leading to a decrease in muscle size and strength, as well as a decline in sexual desire and response. Testosterone therapy may be considered as a way to treat low sexual desire in postmenopausal women, especially when there is no other treatable explanation for the problem, such as conflict in the relationship, fatigue, depression, or vaginal dryness.

EVIDENCE BASED MEDICINE

As per the NICE guideline NG23 dated 2015, it is now recognised that testosterone supplementation can be a helpful solution for women experiencing symptoms of low libido, low sexual arousal, low desire, low sexual satisfaction, and other related issues. Additionally, it is also supported by the International Menopause Society guidelines, which highlight the role of testosterone in managing the hypoactive sexual desire disorder that can cause psychological distress in women.

A chart showing the relationship between oestrogen and testosterone

Nadira Awal

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