Diabetes symptoms of men and women are the same; however, certain diabetes symptoms are specific to men.
Men generally tend to ignore the symptoms and postpone doctor’s visit much longer compared to women.
Men are more likely to develop diabetes; however, less likely to be diagnosed.
9 Diabetes Symptoms Unique to Men
- Low testosterone (low T) - Testosterone is a sex hormone, low levels of it can cause depression, low energy, low sex drive, and reduced muscle mass.
- Bladder Issues - It may include overactive bladder or challenging to control urination.
- Low Strength - Lowering of strength due to muscle mass loss.
- Genital Thrush - It is characterized by redness, swelling, and or itching on or around your penis, an unpleasant odor with white curd-like appearance between your penis and skin, and soreness during sex.
- Penis itching – Dealing with an itchy penis is an uncomfortable thing.
- Retrograde ejaculation – It is a condition characterized by some of the semen released into the bladder, so noticeably less sperm released during ejaculation.
- Peyronie’s disease – It is the curvature of penile, bending of genital.
- Erection problems – Erectile dysfunction is characterized by either unable to achieve or maintain a sufficient erection.
- Decreased sex drive - Low libido means reduced desire for sexual activity.
Along with the above diabetes symptoms of men, additionally, they have general diabetes symptoms common to both men and women.
How diabetes symptoms of men develop?
- Low testosterone – Diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and obesity all have a connection to testosterone deficiency. Low testosterone level is 2.1 times higher for men with diabetes.
- Bladder Issues - Nerve damage caused by high blood sugar, also called diabetic neuropathy, can damage parts of your body, including genital or urinary tract. It causes overactive bladder or difficult to control urination.
- Lowering of strength due to muscle mass loss - If your blood glucose level remains elevated for a long time. Your body will break down fat and muscles for their energy requirement, thus loss of muscle mass and strength. It is more noticeable in type 1 diabetes; it also affects longer undiagnosed and untreated type 2 diabetes.
- Repeated thrush around your genitals. High blood sugar is removed from the body by the kidney along with the urine. That is, sugar is passed out via the urine; this could be a favorable environment for the yeast to thrive. So, men with diabetes develop repeated thrush.
- Penis itching – It may be due to microbial infection (bacteria or virus) or due to reduced blood flow to the genital due to high blood sugar.
- Retrograde ejaculation - It affects the control of semen movement in the body that leads to fertility problems. Retrograde ejaculation is a result of nerve damage due to high blood sugar.
- Peyronie’s disease – High blood sugar can damage the blood vessels, which can affect blood flow to the penis. Reduced blood flow to the genital may cause the curving of penile.
- Erection problems. – High blood sugar leads to nerve damages, which can affect blood flow to the penis that might lead difficulty achieve or maintain an erection.
- Decreased sex drive - High blood sugar level might lower testosterone levels and causes erectile dysfunction, which could reduce the desire for sexual activity.
Being familiar with both the symptoms common to men and women, as well as diabetes symptoms that are specific to men, can help recognize diabetes early.
Early diagnosis helps to start proper treatment in time to prevent diabetes complications.