Home About AllHealth Website Sitemap Contact Us
All Health 
You are here: Home > Old Medical Ref > Old Special Topics Finder > ageing changes in hormone production


ageing changes in hormone production

Images (Click to view larger image)

Endocrine glands within the brain

Endocrine system

Alternative Names
age-related changes in hormone production

As the body ages, the amounts of certain hormones the body produces change.

What is the information for this topic?
There are many different hormones in the body. Each has different effects on the body. The hormone changes seen in women at menopause are most likely to cause symptoms. Menopause occurs when a woman stops making enough of the female hormone called oestrogen. The ovaries make oestrogen. Menopause usually occurs around age 50. A woman may go through menopause earlier if she has her ovaries removed. Low oestrogen levels can cause many symptoms. These may include: As men age, they make less of the male hormone called testosterone. This usually causes less sperm to be made. Decreased testosterone production can cause symptoms that include: The level of most other hormones in the body either stays the same or decreases slightly. However, these age-related changes do not seem to affect people. For example, the adrenal glands, which sit on top of the kidneys, may make fewer hormones with age. Though these hormones are important in fluid and salt balance, problems do not usually occur. Insulin secretion, which helps keep a normal blood sugar, usually decreases with age. However, healthy older people do not usually have a problem with blood sugar.

There is little that can be done to reverse the age-related changes in hormone levels. However, hormone replacement pills or Injections are helpful in some cases. Oestrogen replacement for women is usually the most helpful. Oestrogen pills can get rid of hot flushes, night sweats, mood swings and vaginal dryness. Hormone therapy has risks and side effects, however, and women should discuss these with a doctor. Rarely, testosterone can help an older man feel better.

Taking other hormones, such as growth hormone, has not been shown to be helpful in healthy people and may cause harm.

Author: James Broomfield, MD
Reviewer: HealthAnswers Australia Medical Review Panel
Editor: Dr David Taylor, Chief Medical Officer HealthAnswers Australia
Last Updated: 1/10/2001
Potential conflict of interest information for reviewers available on request

This website and article is not a substitute for independent professional advice. Nothing contained in this website is intended to be used as medical advice and it is not intended to be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, nor should it be used for therapeutic purposes or as a substitute for your own health professional's advice.  All Health and any associated parties do not accept any liability for any injury, loss or damage incurred by use of or reliance on the information.


Back Email a Friend View Printable Version Bookmark This Page


eknowhow | The World's Best Websites
    Privacy Policy and Disclaimer