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My son is ordered by one doctor to perform testosterone test. It seems that his puberty is delayed or slow in developing. Although we know there are differences from individual to individual as to when puberty begins, generally it should start by the age of 10 years. He is 13 so we decided to check his testosterone level, since he doesn’t seem to start with puberty. I would like to know more about testosterone level, what does it means.

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Normally, there are hormonal and physical manifestations of the onset of puberty. A delay can occur if the testes do not produce enough testosterone or if pituitary gland does not produce enough LH. The test for testosterone level also can be ordered if a young boy seems to be undergoing a very early puberty. Causes of precocious puberty in boys, due to increased testosterone, include different tumors and congenital adrenal hyperplasia. There is great variability in testosterone levels between men and a broad range in age related values. However, in males, a decreased testosterone level may indicate hypothalamic or pituitary disease or damage of the testes. Genetic diseases also can cause decreased testosterone production in young men. A decreased testosterone level also can indicate impaired testosterone production. This happens because of acquired damage to the testes, such as alcoholism, physical injury, or viral diseases like mumps. Increased testosterone in boys is usually caused by early puberty.
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