- Published on Tuesday, 19 June 2012 22:06
- Written by Cherie S. White, BlackAmericaWeb.com
Got a question about men's health? Text your questions to "646464" (OHOHOH).
With the rising cost of health care, maintaining good health is key. And for black men, the risk of not taking care of themselves can have devastating effects in the bedroom.
According to research by the Mayo Clinic, two things in particular, obesity and alcoholism, has a direct affect on testosterone levels. As men age, the amount of testosterone in the body gradually declines. This natural decline starts after age 30 and continues throughout life. But there are other causes, some preventable, of low testosterone levels:
-Chemotherapy or radiation treatment for cancer
-Dysfunction of the pituitary gland
-Medications, especially hormones used to treat prostate cancer and corticosteroid drugs
-Obesity (especially abdominal)
Without adequate testosterone, a man may lose his sex drive, experience erectile dysfunction, suffer depression and have difficulty concentrating.
Today's Get Well Wednesday doctor, Dr. Rani Whitfield, talks testosterone deficiency and tells men what they need to do to acquire and maintain healthy hormone levels.
About the Doctor
Dr. Rani G. Whitfield, a Board Certified Family Physician with a Certificate of added qualification (CAQ) in Sports medicine, is currently in private practice in his native Baton Rouge, LA.. Dr. Whitfield attended University High in Baton Rouge, and then went on to earn his undergraduate degree from Southern University. He earned his Medical degree from MeHarry Medical College in Nashville, TN and went on to earn his Certificate of Added Qualification in Sports Medicine from Ohio State University. Dr. Whitfield is an impassioned advocate for increasing the awareness of health related issues, such as HIV/AIDS, obesity, cardiovascular disease and substance abuse affecting today’s youth. Dr. Whitfield is very active in the community and the surrounding areas.
In 2004 Dr. Whitfield was selected by BET to appear on the critically acclaimed hit show “106 & Park” to discuss HIV/AIDS. In 2005 he agreed to become one of several noted professionals (Rev. Calvin Butts, Hill Harper, Jesse Jackson, Jr., Patti Labelle, comedian/actress Mo’Nique, Al Sharpton, Omar Tyree, Dr. Joycelyn Elders, etc) to share wisdom via a book entitled Not In My Family – a collection of essays that discuss AIDS in the African American community.
He has volunteered invaluable time and knowledge throughout the Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. He is also a physician volunteer and medical director of the National Association of Free Clinics Communities are Responding Everywhere (C.A.R.E) which provides free health care to the underserved patients across the USA.
I have low testosterone. How can I build it up naturally?
Increase dietary fat, resistance and interval training, adequate sleep, reduce body fat percentages.
What's the best supplement for low testosterone?
Win T is great and is available over-the-counter. The best way, however, is medical treatment.
How does cuomadin affect a man's sexual activity/drive?
Coumadin can potentially decrease libido/sex drive.
What about HGH releasers?
Human growth hormone releasers are over-the-counter medications believed to help increase the release of HGH.
What can you take that's over the counter for low testosterone?
Are there any physical symptoms of low testosterone?
Fatigue, depression, weight gain, and decreased strength and muscle tone.
What about Cilias? Would that help to increase your testosterone?
Cialis improves erectile dysfunction, but not libido nor does it improve testosterone levels.
What about a clogged artery? Is that also a cause?
Yes, a clogged artery can cause erectile dysfunction. It has no impact on testosterone, however.
Does exercise-produced testosterone come with the same side effects?
No, this is a natural way of improving/maintaining levels. Exercise is medicine.
What the best treatment for erectile dysfunction caused by high blood pressure medicine?
Trying a new medicine. There are many classes of blood pressure medications.
Is horny goat weed safe and does it help increase testosterone levels?
Horny goat weed is an aphrodisiac; no impact on testosterone; may increase blood flow to penis and increase erections .
So testosterone shots will help my prostate, right? Will it also help me lose weight?
Testosterone injections may cause enlargement of your prostate. They can aid in weight loss and increase muscle mass.
I found a pill named Apexxx. It has not had any side effects to my blood pressure or sugar. Do you know anything about this pill?
I'm not familiar with Apexxx.
What about Ageless Male testosterone product?
There are no clinical studies on Ageless Male. It is a combination of all aphrodisiacs in one pill.
Will Coumadin cause any erectile dysfunction or problems with a man's sexuality?
Coumadin may decrease libido and cause erectile dysfunction. One study however said there may be some benefits to increase libido.
How much testosterone can I take in a month's time in milligrams?
It depends on your levels. See your doctor.
What about taking vitamin E for low testosterone?
Vitamin E is known by some to be the sex vitamin. It can potentially increase blood flow to the genitalia but has no effect on serum testosterone.
How would testosterone affect me since I had a heart transplant 16 years ago?
Improve energy, muscle mass, libido, and aid in weight loss. See your doctor to discuss.
Can increased cholesterol, which is a risk factor for heart disease, cause low testosterone? My doctor said my levels were a little low. I was told to get a blood test to find the problem. I'm 54. My energy is a little low. I take vitamins and fish oil. What else can I do? I've changed my diet too.
Start exercising and discuss with the doctor again for the possibility of testosterone replacement.
My husband has diabetes, did shot (penis), and takes both Viagra and Cialis. Nothing has worked for eight months now.
His testosterone levels need to be checked. There is also the penile implant.
Cat is critically low, 124. The doctor started him on injections, then the regular doctor moved him to creams. How long will it normally take for these numbers to improve?
Quickly, within a month with injections; symptom improvement, however, is more important.
What's the name of the patches and gels?
Androderm (patch); Axiron, AndroGel,Testim (gels); Striant (mouth patch).
I experience fatigue, weight gain, depression, Erectile dysfunction, low sense of well-being.
Treatment is by improving low levels with medicine.
I have an increased red blood cell count? I am a runner. Isn't that a good thing?
It can be temporary (ask Lance Armstrong), but if the blood is too thick, your chance of heart attack/stroke increases.
Is there a special doctor you go to for your levels or any family M.D.?
This can be easily addressed by a family doctor. A urologist also treats this issue.
How does one prevent the formation of tonsil stones?
Tonsilloliths can be dislodged; also gargle with salt water, antibiotics can be used or surgical removal.
Can blood clots cause leg cramps?
Yes, they can, along with leg swelling, redness, and pain. Sometimes, however they only cause swelling and no pain.
If my testosterone levels are borderline, should I still seek testosterone treatment?
Yes, as improved levels can increase male sperm counts and improve bone density, energy levels, and erectile dysfunction.
Can you get pregnant with endometriosis?
Yes you can, but the miscarriage rate is higher. See your specialist for a procedure that may help you.
Are the risks of taking expired adipex high?
The risk of taking any expired drug is high. It may not work or could be less effective. Get a new prescription.
What happens when a woman has too much testosterone?
Skin problems (like acne), excess body hair, and deep voice.
Are there any baldness remedies that actually work?
Rogaine and Propecia; hair transplants and scalp reductions; wigs and hair pieces. I just rock the bald head- someone said it looked good on me.
What causes blood in stool?
There are many causes of blood in the stool, from hemorrhoids to diverticular disease to cancer. See your doctor as soon as possible.
I believe the testosterone issue may be my issue. How do I deal with this issue without health insurance?
Replacement can be costly; interval training is one way; the blood test is inexpensive, however, and I would at least get that checked.
What is the number level for testosterone? I'm 52 years old.
The normal range for testosterone levels in men are between 250-800ng/dl (depends on lab the doctor uses.)
My fingers are numb at the tips.
See your doctor. It could be Raynaud's Syndrome or Raynaud's Phenomenon. Medical treatment is available. You also need to rule out nerve disorders. If your body is not getting enough protein, it will take away from non-essential functions (i.e. your sex organs.
Does using Androgel make your testicles smaller? If so, why?
With the correct dose it is unlikely that your testicles will shrink on Androgel.
What can my husband do to increase his energy & libido? He prefers not to take Viagra.
Viagra does not improve libido. It improves blood flow to the penis. For decreased libido, check his T levels, blood sugar, and thyroid.
How much testosterone shots can you take in a month's time?
It depends on your levels. Get your testosterone levels drawn and see your doctor today.