Effect of Low Estrogen Levels in Men
By: Marylin Salgado
July 9, 2019
Normally, Estrogen blogs on the web are geared towards women. This is because Estrogen is more dominant in female growth and reproductive development. This time around, I am directing the topic towards men.
We all know Testosterone plays an important role in male sexual development and reproductive tissues such as the testes and prostate, maintaining erections, growth of body hair, muscle mass and bone mass.
It is a well-known fact that men and women both share Testosterone and Estrogen. Men who want to trans into a female take estradiol to increase their level of estrogen and in turn, develop female characteristics, including growth in their breasts and a higher pitched voice. Women take testosterone for muscle development and those that want to trans into a male, develop a deeper voice and grow excess hair on their face.
Estradiol has been proven to be essential for controlling libido, erectile function and the production of sperm. Aromatase, which is the enzyme that converts testosterone to estrogen, is found in abundance in the penis, testis and brain, which are all important organs in sexual function. In the penis estrogen receptors are also found in high concentrations.
Estrogen acts in the brain to influence erectile function. Even though testosterone is considered to be the dominant hormone in men, estrogen levels are found during male development and contributes to sperm development.
A study done and reported in the New England Journal of Medicine showed a male patient with low estrogen levels who had normal sperm density but the life span of his sperm was very low, proving estrogen levels are just as important as testosterone in sperm viability.
Although difficult to determine the exact role of estrogen in male sexual function, it has been proven estrogen contributes to sexual development.
Just as women go through menopause, men also go through age-related menopause symptoms and “estrogen – related changes in body composition and sexual function.” – Honor Whiteman, Medical News Today.
Studies have shown that men with low estrogen levels can experience weight gain and unfavorable changes in sexual function. A study reported on Medical News Today explained the effects blocked estrogen levels had on men. These men were found to have the same weight gain and adverse sexual functions as those with low estrogen levels.
Interestingly enough, it was also found that some symptoms attributed to low testosterone levels were actually caused by partial to exclusively low estrogen levels.
These studies show that estrogen replacement is not exclusively for transgender men seeking to become women. It also does not determine how masculine you are if you are indeed needing estrogen therapy.
It was once thought normal for testosterone levels in men to decrease, and once these were replaced, there was little understanding of why men were not reaching optimal sexual function or other functions that testosterone served. Through further study, it was later understood low estrogen levels were affecting men just as much as women, but in different ways. As long as estrogen replacement therapy for heterosexual men is closely monitored, these individuals should not experience the big changes that a transgender man would.
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