Testosterone is an androgenic hormone produced chiefly by the testes. It is responsible for the growth of secondary sex characteristics in men. A small amount of testosterone is present in the body of women also. The deficiency or excessive amounts of this hormone causes many side effects in the human body. Many debates have been conducted among scientists and healthcare professionals on the side effects of testosterone.
Almost all unwanted side effects of testosterone are caused the androgenic properties of the hormone. The usage of synthetic testosterone helps people with HIV-related wasting gain weight.
A man with testosterone deficiency experiences decreased sex drive, moodiness, and fatigue. Testicular function deceases with age. This phenomenon is usually found in men after the age of thirty. The supplementation of the hormone sometimes tends to slow down the body?s natural ability to produce testosterone. This is the major side effect found in men.
Vomiting, nausea, swelling of the arms and legs, yellowing of the skin and eyes, and prolonged and painful erections are the early signs of serious side effects. Using excess amount of artificial testosterone causes serious allergic reactions such difficulty in breathing, swelling of the tongue, lips, or face. In women, hoarseness, male-pattern baldness, deepening of voice, excessive hair growth, and menstrual irregularities are the main side effects. Prolonged use of testosterone in higher doses may result in shrinking of testicles, gynecomastia (breast growth in men), decreased or increased sex drive, and a number of less serious side effects such as acne, decreased sperm production in men, clitoral enlargement, male pattern baldness, and water retention. Liver damage and cancer are the other serious side effects caused by testosterone.