Secondary Hypogonadism

When one or both the testis of a male becomes functionally weak, perhaps in sperm production or sex hormone synthesis, the condition is called hypogonadism. It primarily occurs due to the failure of sex glands to produce sufficient sex hormones to stir the occurrence of male characteristics. This abnormality could either be a result of disease of the testis and is known as primary hypogonadism or due to hypothalamus or pituitary disorder leading to the secondary hypogonadism. Secondary hypogonadism is dysfunction caused by a malfunction in the human brain. The pituitary gland is usually expected to respond fast and efficiently to low testosterone hormones level by triggering the gonads to release more. With the condition, the gland remains unresponsive.

 

Do finasteride cause secondary hypogonadism?

From the year 1998, finasteride has been an approved medication for men. Like any other medicine, it has side effects. One of its commonly reported side effects of proscar is a reduction of sexual desire for individuals using it. Studies have shown that adverse side effects due to its use are occurring at the rate of 2.1 % to about 3.8%, with erectile dysfunction being on the forefront. This is gradually followed by ejaculatory problems and loss of libido.

The real cause of these abnormalities is an ingredient in finasteride called dihydrotestosterone (DHT) which reduces the adversely the volume of ejaculation. A majority of the studies, however, show that these effects become eradicated sometimes after the drug is withdrawn. On the other hand, new reports suggest that there could be permanent effects on the sexual desire among the patients which may even trigger depression due to persistence.

Causes of secondary hypogonadism

With the secondary hypogonadism, the testes are healthy but impaired functionally due to pituitary or hypothalamus malfunctions. Below are some of the conditions that may cause secondary hypogonadism.

1. Kallman syndrome 

This is the improper development of the hypothalamus which is responsible for secretion of pituitary hormones. This is the basis for stimulation of secretion of the sex hormones.

2. Pituitary disorders

A malfunction in the pituitary gland will inhibit the release of pituitary hormones to the male gonads. A tumor, for example, may be one of the contributing factors to this abnormality, as it causes obscurity in the functionality of the gland.

3. Inflammatory diseases

Diseases like sarcoidosis, tuberculosis, and histiocytosis are inflammatory diseases that could affect the hypothalamus or the pituitary glands. This will, in turn, extend to the sexual glands as the pituitary hormones are not secreted.

4. HIV/AIDS

This disease could severely affect the hypothalamus and the pituitary glands. By extension, the testosterone secretion will be severely affected. AIDS could be a menace to sexual desire of an individual.

5. Aging

As men grow older, sexual desire decreases. This is a problem that will significantly affect the level of testosterone synthesis and release. They generally release less semen that the young men.

6. Medications

Some drugs possess hormone inhibiting components. Prolong use of such drugs could, in the long run, destroy testosterone secretion by the testes.