Testosterone is a hormone that is considered an androgen or male sexual hormone. It is a natural steroid in the body and is produced primarily in the testes, but may also be produced in smaller amounts by the adrenal glands. (In women, smaller amounts of testosterone are made in the ovaries.) The production of testosterone is governed primarily by the pituitary gland, which signals the need for additional testosterone by releasing luteinizing hormone, or LH. The functions of testosterone are discussed below.
Testosterone plays a role in determining the gender of developing fetuses.
Testosterone is responsible for the development of a deeper voice, muscle mass, facial hair growth and male genital development at puberty.
Testosterone contributes to an active sexual drive in both men and women.
Testosterone increases the metabolic functions in men, which contribute to faster healing and lower total body fat.
Testosterone is necessary for sperm to mature and contributes to the overall quality of the sperm.