Endocrine

Endocrine problems are related to an imbalance of hormones.

 

Oestrogens (female sex hormones) cause increased blood flow to sex organs, leading to lubrication during arousal. It also effects mood and sleep and therefore affects sexual interest. Menopause is associated with a decline in oestrogen levels leading to thinning of vaginal muscles and dryness, which can dampen sex drive. A low sex drive could be treated with hormone therapy.

 

Hormone therapy could be in the form of oral medications, patches applied to the skin or topical treatment to the vagina. Hormone therapy improves vaginal tone, elasticity and lubrication. When applied to the vagina, it is more effective at a lower dose than pills or skin patches. A lower dosage minimises the risk of heart attacks, strokes and breast cancer.

 

Late Onset Hypogonadism (LOH, or Andropause) can occur in men, and is associated with decreasing levels of testosterone. It can affect sexual function by decreasing libido, decreasing erectile quality and frequency, and decreasing early-morning erection. Mood and thoughts are also affected. A person is more likely to complain of fatigue, irritability, low mood and impaired cognition. It also has physical symptoms such as loss of muscle mass, loss of bone mass, increase of abdominal fat (which increases the risk of heart attack) and diabetes, amongst others. More research is still being carried out on this condition.