What are the symptoms of low testosterone in women? So testosterone has many physiological effects on the female body. Mostly it drives libido, intensity of orgasm, clitoral sensitivity. That’s proven. Women will feel like they have a lack of energy, they have a hard time losing weight, or they just don’t feel as toned as they used to. However, testosterone is anabolic in men and women, so it helps reduce body fat, it helps protect lean muscle, but mostly drives libido in women as well.
I read books about testosterone, like it’s a miracle for certain women. If you get women’s testosterone level optimized, a lot of them will have a dramatic improvement in libido; it makes a world of difference.
I just had a woman emailed me the other day, because I had to increase her dose, because on the starting dose she didn’t feel as good as we expected. So you have to recheck the levels, and rechecked the levels we increased the dose a little bit, so we balanced the hormones perfectly and now she’s like “I got my libido back, thank you very much.”
Other women, you see, that have a lot of stress in their life, they come in, what I tend to see, they have high cortisol levels, which are the stress hormone, and they have low testosterone. So you have to balance their hormones, you have to lower the cortisol levels, you have to bring up the testosterone. But it may take a little bit more time. But we do absolutely see dramatic differences in women, when you give them testosterone.
So what the other classic symptoms of low testosterone? So lean body mass obviously, weight loss, energy, testosterone effects on mood, all hormones affect mood. A lot of times these hormones work synergistically with each other, so it’s not just one hormone. But certainly women will notice even in the early thirties, I have patients who come to me in the thirties, and they say “my libido, I don’t know where my libido is.”
I just had one patient the other day; she said: “You know, my mother told me, when you’re 38 your libido is going to peak and it’s never peaches”. Now she is 54 years old, and we finally got her testosterone level styled in. So it’s multi-factory. So now she’s actually sexually active again, she is actually enjoying it, where before it was a chore for her.
And that’s what I hear from a lot of women, they say “you know, I just feel bad for my husband, because I know he wants to have sex more, and I wish I wanted it more, I almost do it out of obligation”. And you can actually change their life by giving them some testosterone, balancing their other hormones, working on them with nutrition, and exercise, and sleep. So it’s multifactorial.
Testosterone in women, it’s been studied by the New England of Medicine, testosterone levels peak in early adulthood in women, just like they do in men. When women have the thickest skin, they have the most energy, they have the strongest libido, that’s when they look the best and feel the best. Because the science is that testosterone is one of the hormones, that will thicken elastin and collagen in the skin, so women will say “you know, I notice my skin is improved.” It’s amazing, that you spend a lot of money on skin products and they come in and like “it wasn’t till I started using testosterone that my skin improved.”
The side effects of testosterone in women, some women who are sensitive to it will notice that they get some acne. But that’s usually are younger women, who are more sensitive to it, and we just adjust the dose. You can back off the dose, or you could treat the acne. I have some women who love how they feel at a dose of testosterone; they say “can we just treat my acne?”. But most women tolerate testosterone very well. It’s been studied pretty extensively, but I think as science evolves, you’re going to hear more and more about it, because once you fix one woman’s libido and she tells all her friends, and all the sudden you have a lot of patients, which is really nice.
I just had a 33-year-old girl, who had a total hysterectomy, because she’s tested positive cancer, they yanked out her ovaries, libido went to nothing. I got her hormones, and she’s feeling amazing, she’s already sent me 2 patients in the last week. That’s generally what happens when you get patients really feeling well.
How does it give them more energy? So testosterone is protective to your heart, it dilates the coronary arteries, improves cardiac function, it helps on a cellular level, it works with the other hormones that you’re more efficient. Yourselves are more efficient when you’re eating, when you’re working out. And of course, you know, the more you work out, the more energy you have to go to the gym, the better you feel. So it’s multifactorial, but testosterone is certainly anabolic.
So there’s a reference range on laps. And the amazing thing about the reference range is patients coming and most of them they say that their doctors don’t check their testosterone levels. But the ones that do, they say they were in range. And the testosterone just like in a man, the reference ranges go down as you age. So the optimal free testosterone is between 2-4. If you look at the reference range for a woman who is 40 years old, it’s 0.0-2.2. So if there’s 0.1 they’re told they’re in range. So commonly you’ll see patients that come and the free testosterone is 0.2, 0.4, 0.8 and when you dial them back up to the level they had, when they were 18, they actually notice a dramatic difference. So range goes down as you age.