Andropause, a condition of males above 40 years of age suffering from decline in testosterone, despite not being debilitating, can unfavourably affect the economic shape of a country, according to Indian Andropause Society President Dr D Narayana Reddy.
Delivering the Presidential address at the second National Conference on Ageing Male - The Ageing Adam Issues, Concerns and Solutions on Saturday, he said India has ten crore male population above 50 years of age and this could double in the coming decade.
Andropause was a matter of concern not only for the health of an individual, but also for the national economy as people's productivity could be affected badly. It could cause change in attitude and moods, fatigue, loss of energy, sex drive and physical agility of a large population of productive and skillful men.
If the andropause problems were cleverly, handled India could reap good demographic dividends in the coming decades, as majority of its population was less than 25 years of age. However, lack of guidance to help check cases of andropause had been a cause of constant worry in the country. "If the problem of depletion of testosterone can be delayed, it can translate into economic growth as man's skills, learnt over years, can be put to good use for a longer period," Dr Reddy said.
Awareness and advances in medical science in the past couple of decades had seen increase in life expectancy of the Indian male. In 1950, it was 40 years, before jumping to 63 in 2003 and stood at 70 years now, he added.
Medical Council of India member S Kantha said it is a difficult subject to explain to the people how andropause occurred. Producing quality psychiatrists is more important to cure the condition than administering medicine. Hence, universities and autonomous colleges should come forward to prepare a need-based curriculum in psychiatry and MCI would consider it, he added.
Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman K Rahman Khan said due to ignorance people took ageing as part of life. But there was a need to understand it better.