The third female sex hormone is testosterone. Most often associated with men but women also have, and need, testosterone. As our ovarian function starts to decline, testosterone levels fall and there are a number of symptoms we experience as this level drops.
Mostly widely associated with testosterone is sex drive, libido. Testosterone also plays an important role in cognitive performance. The ‘brain fog’ associated with the peri and menopausal years, the word finding difficulties, lack of clarity which affects so many yet is not widely spoken about. Plus muscle strength, energy, motivation, that joie de vivre.
All of these symptoms are due to low testosterone, which means oestrogen containing HRT is unlikely to have much of an impact on them.
Although we have discussed testosterone, this is usually only prescribed by a menopause specialist, most GPs are not able to issue this on the NHS.
However to have the complete picture of female hormones, it is important to discuss its role.