Hot flashes in men: An update

Men who see their female companions flush and sweat when they reach a certain age are probably glad that they are not subject to postmenopausal hot flashes. But hot flashes are not just a "woman's problem." In fact, some men can be just as troubled, but treatment can help.

Who flashes — and why

Doctors understand the who more than the why. In both men and women, hormones are to blame. About 70% of women get hot flashes at the time of menopause, when estrogen levels plummet.

In men, the problem is testosterone. Males don't experience an abrupt drop in the hormone. In fact, although testosterone levels trickle down by about 1% a year after the age of 40, most men maintain levels within the normal range, and nearly all retain enough testosterone to prevent hot flashes.

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