Understand the different factors that can cause low testosterone.

While the levels of testosterone in your body will naturally decline as you get older, not everyone will develop low testosterone and you don't have to accept it as a natural part of aging. This common condition can be caused by multiple factors, and understanding these can help you identify why you have developed low testosterone.

There are two specific categories of male low testosterone, which is sometimes referred to as "hypogonadism":

  1. Primary hypogonadism is when there is an issue originating from the testes.
  2. Secondary hypogonadism is a problem arising from the hypothalamus or pituitary gland, which are parts of your brain.

In some cases, low testosterone can be caused by a combination of both primary and secondary factors.

Your doctor will do specific tests to determine the cause of your low testosterone.

What are the risk factors for developing low testosterone?

Getting diagnosed with a condition like low testosterone can sometimes lead to more questions and leave you wondering, "Why me?" Below are some common risk factors that can contribute to the development of low testosterone:

  • Age: The prevalence of low testosterone increases with age as natural testosterone production in the body declines.
  • Family history: You may inherit a predisposition to low testosterone from your parents.
  • Other medical conditions: Other conditions—such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and HIV—may affect the level of testosterone your body produces.
  • Medications: Using certain medications—such as opiate pain medications, NSAIDs, some antifungals and anticonvulsants, prednisone, and anti-androgens—can reduce testosterone levels.

Be prepared to discuss these factors with your doctor to help accurately determine the root of the problem and create a treatment plan that is best for you.