How Does High Levels Of Testosterone In The Body Affect Women, Expert Shares
Our body produces hormones which are responsible for our sex drive, mood swings, hair growth, appearance, reproductive health and whatnot. Besides all these, testosterones also have a crucial role to play.
Female bodies produce the hormone in small amounts compared to males. Its normal range among women is between 10nmol/L and 75nmol/L, while for men, the limit is between 300g/dL and 1000g/dL.
If the levels of testosterone rise in a woman's body, there are several things that can get affected. Therefore, we spoke to Dr Chetna Jain, Alumnus of the Royal College Of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, Director Dept. OBG Gynaecology at Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Gurgaon, to understand the symptoms to look out for and treatments.
What Does Testosterone Do?
Testosterone is mainly a male sex hormone that is produced in small amounts by ovaries and adrenal glands in thefemale bodies as well. When combined with oestrogen and progesterone, this male hormone helps to maintain the reproductive health of women.
It helps to regulate body mass, repair reproductive tissues and causes behavioural changes. Hence, it is crucial that it remains in the normal range or the side effects can require medical assistance.
Symptoms Of High Levels Of Testosterones In Humans
If your body is producing testosterone at a very high level, here are a few symptoms that you would witness,
Excessive hair growth all over the body, including face, back, legs, chest and arms. It can make the hair grow thicker on the face which can even develop into a full-fledged beard.
Male pattern baldness. A few women might experience hair fall instead of hair growth. For example, you would see your hairline receding.
In some cases, the clitoris can develop into an infantile penis. It is the rarest case but can happen.
Breast size can reduce significantly to take the shape of a man's chest.
Voice can deepen and become hoarse like men.
Muscle mass can also increase. This is one of the reasons why some athletes take supplements that help them gain muscle mass and give them an advantage over competitors.
Lower sex drive
Increased cholesterol and blood sugar levels
Decrease in fertility ratio
Mood Swings leading to anxiety, depression and irritation
32% increased risks of diabetes
Causes For High Levels Of Testosterone In Females
The causes of high levels of testosterone include
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
Hirsutism (excessive growth of dark hair)
Dwarfism (excessively short height)
Gigantism (excessively long height)
Large body parts
Treatment For High Levels Of Testosterone
If you have been showing any of the aforementioned symptoms, you must consult a gynaecologist. The doctor will run some blood tests, do an ultrasound or perform more clinical tests to confirm the situation.
For women suffering from PCOS, the easiest way to handle hormonal imbalance is to inculcate changes in their lifestyle. For example, eat healthily, avoid junk food, exercise regularly and regulate the consumption of sugar and carbs.
If needed, the doctor might prescribe medication to control hair growth. You can also opt for cosmetic options like shaving, waxing, bleaching or laser treatment.
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In some cases, the doctor might also prescribe low doses of steroids to control the situation. One of the major changes that anyone has to inculcate is dietary modification.
You must consume a lot of vegetables, including broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, etc. Vitamins and mineral supplements can also help you maintain hormonal balance in the body.
In most cases, hormonal imbalance among women directly affects their menstrual cycle and reproductive health, therefore, you have to be careful in case you witness something abnormal.
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