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Testicular failure is a rare disorder that occurs when the male testicles – two egg-shaped reproductive organs located descended into the scrotum – affects the inability to produce sperm and testosterone.
The disorder may be the result of problems associated with primary testicular failure due to a disturbance and hypothalamus or pituitary contributing to the secondary testicular failure. This hormonal imbalance affects the growth, muscle mass, and other male characteristics. It is similar to the disorders such as hypogonadism, wherein glands do not produce sufficient amounts of hormones and secondary hypogonadism – a disorder associated with pituitary and hypothalamus.
The causes of testicular failure
Testicular failure can be caused by various factors, including the use of certain pharmaceuticals, genetic disorders, infection, trauma, nerve damage, disorders of the endocrine system and an unhealthy lifestyle.
Among the most common causes of testicular failure include:
- medicaments such as ketoconazole – used to treat fungal and yeast, opiates – painkillers and the glucocorticoids (used to treat inflammatory disorders, immunological and metabolic conditions);
- abnormalities in chromosomes that are responsible for the production of hormones;
- cancer of testicles, mumps and other diseases affecting the male testicles;
- torsion of the spermatic cord, which causes cutting off of blood from the testicles;
- an inflammation of the testicles;
- low levels of parathyroid hormone;
- damage to the testicles;
- autoimmune diseases.
The other risk factors of testicular hormonal failure are constant compressions for the testicles (eg. while riding a motorcycle), the problem with testicles that didn’t descend into the scrotum after birth, or the frequent use of recreational drugs like marijuana.
The symptoms of testicular failure
Testicular failure results in the inability to produce sufficient amounts of male hormones. Among the first symptoms can be, therefore, weaken of male beard growth. Among the symptoms of primary testicular failure occurs:
- loss of muscle mass;
- the decrease of libido;
- loss of facial and body hair;
- enlarged breasts;
With the secondary testicular failure appears:
- delay or incomplete development during puberty;
- lack of facial hair;
- no mutation of voice;
- disorders of sexual development;
- low growth.
The treatment of testicular hormone failure
The treatment of testicular hormone failure involves the use of hormonal additives to help achieve optimal levels of testosterone and pituitary hormone. Testosterone can be applied orally, topically in the form of a gel patch, or by injection through the skin.
Men taking hormone treatments should carefully monitor the condition of the testicles for signs of extensive growth of the prostate gland or irregularities in the growth of red blood cells, which may be thickened the blood, causing blood clots in veins and arteries. Should be remembered that the hormonal drugs are not able to completely restore the loss of fertility.
In the case of cancer, the treatment of testicular failure, may require surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. On the other hand, in the case of injuries, risky sexual behaviors, and drug usage, avoidance of them, might restore the proper functioning of the testicles.