I have three more weeks until my “last test”. I told my doctor I’d give it six months to correct itself and so far, after several tests, it hasn’t. I’m going to get back into the gym serious for the next couple of weeks, take my zinc, get plenty of rest, make sure I have some decent sex… basically all the stuff you’re supposed to do to “naturally” increase your testosterone levels. If I’m still under 400 (have been between 200-300 on a scale of 1100 with 350+ being normal – but don’t quote me on those scales, they’re from memory, which is increasingly poor these days) then screw it… I’m going on HRT for life. But is 33 years old too young for PERMANENT TRT? Has anyone been on replacement level testosterone therapy for more than, say, 20 years? I’m facing 40 or so years of it!!!! I would think the long-term risks are much worse than the typical bodybuilder doing cycles at low doses, or someone who starts HRT at 50 or 60+ years of age.
But I don’t know. You tell me….
How old were you when you started hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and how long have you been on?
PS: I had a friend ask me if I had cancer today. He said “Man, every time I see you it seems like you’ve lost another five pounds. You look like you’re wasting away. You’d tell me if you had cancer or something right?” Well, that’s about the end of the line for me folks. If people think I look so bad that I have cancer, maybe I need to suck it up and just start taking the shots or gel again.
84 thought on “How Old Were You When You Started HRT / TRT Testosterone Replacement?”
I’m too young for this. I was originally diagnosed with low T in 2004, and I think I had been that way since around 2001-02 (28 yrs old). I lived with it without treatment until last year. I am 36 now, have tried clomid, and after that failed to fix my condition, I am currently working my way through all the various TRT options as a lifer. So far I’ve not found the perfect formula – Starting TRT in and of itself is a long process that requires patience (and anyone with low T knows something about patience). Some treatments work for a while, then stop working, and it’s frustrating. Whatever works, I’m planning to supplement with HCG so, should something bad happen, I’ll still have my body in good working order.
I’m very glad you put this blog together. It helps to know you’re not the only one in the world suffering with this. It’s hard to find people you actually know who have the same condition, because we tend to keep this private and fight the battle alone, unlike other conditions a person may have.
I’d love to hear from people too who have done this long-term. I’d like to know what I’m in for. The future is way too unclear. I’d be encouraged knowing people who have been on it for years are doing well.
I tried to ask this question before (here) but I get the impression that not many people have been on TRT for more than a few years with the exception of bodybuilders who tend to go on “cycles” of very high doses and then post-cycle-therapy involving all kinds of other drugs. By the time their PCT is over with they are ready for another testosterone cycle so really they’re never “off” drugs either. But that situation is different from mine, and probably yours.
Do you know if you have primary or secondary hypogonadism? I might try treatment #2 in this post considering treatment #1 didn’t work. It would be pretty much the last recourse I could try before going on permanent testosterone replacement.
Good luck with your treatment man.
I was diagnosed as secondary. i totally agree about finding a treatment that is specific to our problem – not the direct testosterone replacement. At the moment though, if it’s not Clomid or HCG by itself, we don’t have a lot of options. I hadn’t seen the drug you linked – it does look interesting. I do have hope that pretty soon they will have something as an alternative to TRT that’s tested and available for long-term therapy. That’s why it’s important to keep the boys in working order now, so you can potentially go that route when medicine makes it available to us.
I’m on Androgel. I just upped my dose to 10mg/day. I’m doing ok on it right now, but haven’t gotten on HCG. My doctor won’t prescribe it. I need to find a doctor who will. It sounds like you’ve got a doctor who is willing to work with you. That’s very fortunate.
You might find that going with an anti-aging clinic type of place that has their own compounding pharmacy will make it easier for you to get what you need and, even without using your insurance, could be cheaper than going through your regular doctor. It all depends on how good your insurance does. For me, if I do go on permanent HRT, I’m going to use one of the clinics. My insurance won’t cover injections unless I go to the doctor’s office. I’m not going to the dang doctor’s office every single week for the rest of my life. I don’t want to take the gel anymore because it gave me boils on my chest when I used to use it. So if insurance won’t cover injectibles anyway, I might as well go outside the lines a bit. They still have you consult with a doctor and get all the blood work done so it’s all legal, but they don’t think twice about giving you HCG along with testosterone. I think it’s because places like that actually know what they’re doing – unlike most doctors when it comes to TRT. 😉
I don’t want to make any recommendations because that’s not what this site is for, but you can Google “Anti Aging Clinic” and find plenty of them. Check out forums like anabolex.com and look for the sponsors too. Ask the guys there who they use. You can ignore all of the hardcore steroid-talk that goes on there if you want. It doesn’t change the fact that bodybuilders probably know more about these substances than most endocrinologists. Note: I’m not one of them. I weight all of a buck-seventy and can bench press a whopping 200 lbs. ;-P
I’ve recently started reading message boards for people who have survived testicular cancer and are dealing with primary low T. I’ve seen posts from people who have been on TRT for years (gels and shots). I may try and contact one or more of them just to get a feel for their personal experiences with it. From their posts, I read about an injectible form of replacement called “Nebido”, which is longer term, and builds up in the system over time. You could go 2-3 months between shots.
Currently I’m still off TRT and trying to essentially do what you were doing – use e-blockers and supplements, exercise and diet to produce enough on my own.
Thanks Dave. Let us know what you find out. I haven’t heard anything about Nebido yet, but it sounds promising. I’ll keep my ears to the ground, but can tell you that my insurance only covers testosterone cypionate, Androgel or Testim right now. I can get testosterone enanthate if I pay a little more too.
After matching every symptom on the chart, I finally convinced my primary care physician to run the necessary diagnostic tests. To everyones surprise except me, I was low-T on every count. I just started treatment (patches) today.
I was wondering; how long after starting treatment did you folks start feeling better?
Is there any negative symptoms I should watch out for? Positives?
I’d love to start dropping some weight, the low energy symptom really makes it hard to start and stay motivated.
How old are you? I’m just curious about that because I want to know if it’s normal for me to be on permanent TRT this young.
I noticed improvements in how I felt almost right away. Within two days at least. Sometimes it takes longer; especially if your doctor prescribes you a really low dose. What can happen is you may feel better at first because you’re naturally producing a little bit still, and that gets combined with what you’re taking. But eventually, sometimes within weeks, sometimes as long as a year, your body will stop producing its own testosterone completely, which reduces the total testosterone in your system, sometimes to even lower than it was before it started. To clarify…
If you had three apples, and the normal guy has five apples your doctor might prescribe you two apples. But if your original three get taken away you’re down to only two – worse than before.
Long story short, keep an eye on your levels over time and pay attention to how you’re feeling. Other than that, I’m sure you’ll feel MUCH better. I know I do! As much as I hate the idea of being beholden to a medication the rest of my life, it really do feel a lot better physically and emotionally.
Keep us posted as you go along. I might actually turn this place into a forum if more of you keep showing up!
I’m 47 and have been on HRT for about seven years. I do feel slightly better but my T-count is not any better then when I first started. Presently at just over 300, and just under 300 when I started. So i’m not sure if its psychological or what. Tried the gels and patch and they suck. So I go every 3 weeks for my shot and what a pain in the ass – no pun.
I’m now weighing my options as the thought of continuing this for the rest of my life is really getting to me now. Very frustrating and when I talk to my doctor, he really never has any solid advice other than, “Well it all depends how you feel”. So if anyone has any advice, I’m all ears.
That said, my doc just told me about these new T-Pellets that are implanted under the skin and remain effective for up to 4-months. They’re supposed to be more effective than injections, as they’re time released and distribute an even does over that time period. However, the thought of reopening a wound 3 times a year doesn’t sit well with me.
You can find the procedure here to see what I mean. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a6gMFec8H6k. Link is in Spanish.
You need to find a doctor that lets you just inject yourself from home. Then it won’t be so inconvenient. Also, you can inject subQ (into the fat like people do with insulin) which is just as effective and WAY easier. And every three weeks is too long to wait between shots. Your levels are up and down like a roller coaster. I’d do an injection every week, which would make you feel much better. Also, you didn’t say how much you were taking. You should get way over 300 by taking 100mg every week with an injection.
I don’t blame you about not wanting to deal with this the rest of your life. If you find a way out, let me know. How did you get started in the first place?
Good question – I think I’m taking 150 every 3 weeks. I will def ask about injecting myself – just concerned about the cost. I initially started becuz of sexual issues…lower sex drive. At one point I was going every 2 weeks and wanted to hump everything in site, and as a married man that wasn’t good, so I purposely scaled back to every 3 weeks. That said, my overall concern is how long is it safe to say on this stuff. I guess its safe until it’s not, but that’s just scary. I’ve gone to 3 different urologists and they never have a straight answer. I’ve now been off my shots for about 2 months….doing a little test drive to see how much of a difference it really is making…and I’m just now starting to feel a loss in strength and endurance in my workouts, BUT overall not too much else. Anyway, that’s what prompted to me do a search for “possible” alternatives.
thanks for your advice – appreciate it.
You were prescribed testosterone because of a low sex drive, or you found out – by getting blood work done – that your low sex drive was a side effect of having low testosterone? That’s an important distinction because taking tesosterone causes your body to stop producing it, which could really make things worse in the long run. I’d knock my doctor upside the head if he had put me on testosterone just because I was sick of banging my wife without having checked my testosterone levels.
I would have recommended you try HCG for the last several weeks before coming off, and maybe for a few weeks after that, but since you’ve been “all natural” for two months now, your best bet may be to just stick it out and see if you can reach normal testosterone levels without taking any drugs. If you can, I would highly advise you to never tough any steroids, prohormones, or muscle-building health supplements again, as a lot of those supplements have hormones and prohormones in them even though they’re not labeled correctly. Look up “dietary supplement” on USRecallNews.com and you’ll see what I mean.
If you did end up having to go back on, you could take smaller doses every week, which would probably level you out more and make you feel better than taking one bigger shot every three weeks. You want to be on a relatively level road, not a roller coaster. Being on a roller coaster is what makes us so crazy has teenagers.
Good luck AC! I hope you get your testosterone back to normal levels without having to go back on TRT for good. Get your bloodwork done. And if the doctor who put you on this stuff didn’t get your bloodwork done in the first place, take his ass to court. I’m not one for frivolous lawsuits, but too many doctors are making people lifelong dependents on the pharmaceutical industry for no good reason.
It was checked. I went in for low sex drive, they did blood work and confirmed my count was low. I’m with you though, I can’t stand these pharma companies peddling these drugs like a hot new Camaro on TV and then the doctors shoving it down everyone’s throat at the first sign of a problem. I personally can’t stand taking ANY type of medications….not even Tylenol. Anyway, that’s part of the reason why I got off and was hoping to find ways to bring my levels up naturally – if that’s even possible.
AC, the problem is that your doctor is clueless about TRT treatment hence why you have felt like hell and continue to see no improvement. He hops in his fancy car after you leave his office all while you continue to live like crap. It’s OK because I had a doctor try to do the same thing for me. Injecting a patient once every 3 weeks is a hormonal roller coaster and your doctor should be sued for such a thing. And, when you are deficient in Testosterone, there are some things you can do naturally that can help, but most likely will never bring you up to optimum levels. You are not producing enough now, so it will not magically produce it up to the levels you should be at.
You need to do some research online and you will see there are strict protocols for TRT and to be honest with you, most doctors, unless they specialize in TRT treatment have no clue how to treat a patient. In fact they make them worse off. If TRT is run properly, you will be a lot better off than without it. Again, you are low, you need to address the issues. I did and I feel like a million bucks. Did your doc tell you that Testosterone aromatizes?? Did he prescribe you an AI (Aromitase Inhibitor) basically an estrogen blocker?? Of course not. Did your doctor prescribe you HCG to run throughout your TRT?? HCG is used to keep your balls from shrinking and stop producing testosterone. Once you put synthetic testosterone in your body, your nuts say, “Hey there is test in the body now, we don’t need to work.” Then they slowly start to shut off.
Of course your doctor didn’t let you know about all of this. I am on TRT. I am only in my late 20’s but it has changed my life for the better. You can do it.
I appreciate your enthusiasm! But Ac, judging from some of his earlier comments, is well aware of the use of AIs and HCG.
But you’re right about doctors, especially primary care doctors. Go to a qualified endorcrinologist if you want real help. There are also HRT clinics and online compounding pharmacies, but if my insurance covers it I’d prefer to know that what I’m putting into my body is under the jurisdiction of the FDA and not one step above underground steroids made in someone’s bathtub and mixed with a bunch of bacteriostatic water to keep kill most of the bacteria involved in such a manufacturing process.
Thanks Rip…I agree with you TOTALLY…these docs have no clue. I’m seeing a urologist, cuz that’s who I was told to see by my primary. But I haven’t seen him now in about 3 months now. Every time I ask a question they never have sound advice…it’s all very ambiguous. I’ve seen three different uros and it’s been the same. I KNEW that there was something wrong, that’s why I ended up here looking for some sensible answers.
I knew nothing about AI or HCG’s. I mean I’m aware of the affects and all, but they NEVER once mentioned that there was a way to counteract the shrinking. Friggin numb nuts. I actually like TRT’s suggestion of seeing an endo – that never crossed my mind. And I’ve never heard of an HRT clinic. I will definitely check both of those options out, thanks a million.
The bottom line – at the end of the day – do we all really want to take TRT for the REST of our lives since there really isn’t any solid medical information – that I’m aware of – regarding any long term side-effects.
AC, No we don’t really want to be on TRT the REST of our lives. But at the same time, I’d rather be on it and feeling good than feeling like crap the rest of my life. I know it’s easy to say when you’re in your 30s, but I’d trade a sedentary, painful, depressed, out of shape, sick 95 year life for a fit, happy, active 80 year life any day.
Keep us posted about your progress. I’m going to a new endo next week and am hopeful about at least being on a steady regimen for awhile.
I haven’t been taking HCG, although I have some left. I should take it. My boys are starting to hide away. But it puts me on a roller coaster. Maybe if I combine it with Arimidex or some other AI. But then, like you mentioned before, I’d be on THREE drugs for life; not just one. Ughhh…. pain in the ass, both literally and figuratively.
No problem AC. Hope all is going well for you. As far as being on TRT for the rest of your life, there isn’t a problem with having to do that if that is what your body needs. The main goal is being on the right level of Testosterone to where you feel good. That is the most important. Now if you are on high doses, then there are some long term side effects, so keep in mind you need to be on a strict protocol with frequent blood tests to make sure your levels are normal. I also have some reading material I can send you if you want. I will be glad to send you reading material on TRT. I have quite a bit. Best of luck!
Rip thanks for your reply. I had to remove your email address because it is our policy not to publish email addresses on this site. If you have reading material that can be found online, please provide a link in your next comment. We will publish it if the link goes to a reputable site.
I just had 31st birthday and a few weeks later was diagnosed as having low T …its primary not secondary and my levels flucuate between 190-212 total T….I had to ask my primary for the T test as I had been experiencing more than a few of the common symptoms…(discovered after extensive internet research)….so I am visiting my uro doc in two days to start TRT and feel I need more info on the Ai and hcg component of TRT ……I am so new to this whole thing and finding info is a bit of a challenge as this topic is a very private one for me, any help ….sites or books …articles would be appreciated….this is great forum just found it …..thanks
Sorry to hear you’re having to go on TRT. If I were you I’d go see an endocrinologist, not a urologist. I wouldn’t start taking testosterone until you had other tests done on just about everything a good endo can think of – unless, of course, you already know why you have low T. If it was some sort of testicular injury, steroid abuse, etc…. then that’s one thing. But if you don’t know why, I’d be interested in finding out if I were you. Sometimes they can’t tell you; sometimes they can. But once you start TRT there is no going back. Two of us on here have already tried, and failed.
BUT… the good news is that if you really do end up having to go on TRT you’ll start to feel much better within weeks of starting. Keep coming back here and share your story with us. Hopefully some guys will also be around to share resources and articles, as you requested.
My advice on researching would be to try and stick with places like Medline, Mayo Clinic, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov, etc… and stay away from the bodybuilding and steroid forums for now. You don’t need a bunch of guys taking 500mg – 1,000mg + per week telling you how to do low-dose testosterone replacement. Half of the people giving advice on those forums are reps for TRT / HRT clinics anyway, and are just trying to sell you something.
Try these two Google searches for starters:
Thank You TrT man…I appreciate the rapid response and your advice is helpful ….I will be doing even more research between today and tommorrow……my latest research has uncovered an opinion that TRT and HCG as well as an Aromatase inhibitor should be put together or TRT may produce undesirable side effects………any thoughts on this ?
I completely agree that I want to see an Endo Dr. however I doubt my uro has any care to discover the root of this ….when I asked why this happened he shrugged and said “just happens sometimes , we really dont know why “………..but I gotta do something for symptom control ….the lethargy and lack of motivation coupled with the depression is debilitating…….my overall health and career are beginning to be affected…so on I march I will post follow ups
Regarding HCG and AIs…
The HCG thing is up to you. If you want to have kids someday, or are worried about the appearance of small testicles, you might consider taking HCG. If you don’t want kids (or more kids) and don’t care about your ball size (my wife is happy she’ll never have to see what she called “saggy old man balls”) then you may not need HCG.
The AI thing shouldn’t be needed UNLESS you start getting symtpoms, such as bloating of the face and itchy, puffy nipples. Why take a powerful drug that has it’s own side effects (including liver damage) if you don’t need to? As other people have mentioned on this site, the AIs like Arimidex are usually only needed with high doses of testosterone 300mg + per week. At TRT doses of 150mg or less per week you shouldn’t need them. Gyno doesn’t happen overnight; you should have plenty of warning if that’s going to be a problem for you.
dear trt man,
have you come across anyone else who suffers from kleinfelters syndrome? for all those who dont know what that is : its a hormone deficiency (testosterone) except in my case my piturary gland was working twice as hard to keep my levels balanced yet my levels where still low so i was well under the radar and thats partially why it was discovered until i reached the end of my teenage years. i did however have to have one of my testicles dropped when i had a hernia operation when i was just 9 years old and that should have threw up a couple of red flags however this syndrome is very hard to detect in children. so u can say i was fortunate to have discovered that i have k syndrome but at the same time im a little discouraged that i found out so late after gone thru puberty and only now bein put on trt however i havent been taking my meds regularly due to tthe outragous pricetag of angdrogel and not being able to get health insurance so i have been rationing it for the last 2 months and have about 3 or 4 packets left so things are gettting kind of nail biting . i have also noticed that i am more tired now from not taking my meds. i still have to shave everyday which is a plus i guess but ive noticed that my appetite has hit a downward spiral and my sexual prowess has gone down too… no problems in the erection department thank god but i have lost a little desire to go out and find a companion or two. do you think i would benefit from talking to a genocouncilist or a therapist that deals with this kind of stuff. so far i havent met anyone who has this condition i know that is is rear like ever 1 in 1000 men are born with it and it has varying degrees of severity . in my case im just xxy however im told that sum less fortunate people are xxxy or xxxxy and it goes on. to most people i just look like a very slim 6’2 guy however i have always been slim despite working out and eating more than enough food plus supplements to no avail.
I don’t know anyone else with that particular condition that I know of, but then again I could be friends with several and just not know it. Hopefully some other folks who are going through something similar will see your comment and reply. I wouldn’t recommend not taking your androgel though. If you’re on TRT you need to take your medication regularly or it’s a hormonal and emotional roller coaster. I understand about cost, which I discussed in response to your other comment. As for finding out after puberty, I think any long-term use of an androgen like testosterone is going to continue to work on your masculine features so that shouldn’t be an issue.
Thanks for the informative HRT forum. I am 39 yrs old and was diagnosed with low T 10 months ago by my primary physician. My initial visit was due to depression, which I had been experiencing for a couple months. It was the first time I had ever been through depression. Frankly, before this, I never understood depression. Anyway, doc did blood tests and discovered low T. He first put me on Testim gel. I did this for 2 months and became sick of rubbing the sticky stuff on my shoulders/upper arms, however, it did work. I asked my doc about injections. He showed my wife how to give them, so I have now been on 100 mg/ml shots every two weeks for about 8 months now (administered by my wife). Remind me not to tick my wife off on the day the shot is due :). Since being on HRT, I feel great. But, I ended up on this site because I am now starting to be concerned about the long term effects of “low dose” testosterone injections. After reading the posts on this forum, I am now interested in this HCG treatment. I have noticed some testicular atrophy, but, I just chalked it up to my lot in life as a result of HRT. Having been on HRT, more specifically Test injections, for 8-10 months, is it too late to talk to my doc about HCG? Thanks
DT – It’s never too late to start HCG. With that said, I don’t take it. We have a child and don’t want to have another (though we may adopt) and my wife is glad I will never have “saggy old man balls” (her words, not mine) so I’m not worried about it. The more medications you add, the more side-effects you have to worry about and the harder your TRT is to manage, IMHO. But if you EVER want to have kids in the future you should probably take HCG.
Good luck and welcome to the site!
DT, well there is one thing wrong with your current protocol. First being the timing of your injections. Even while taking a long ester testosterone such as Test Cypionate or Test Enanthate, these esters in particular peak in 5-7 days. Therefore, in order for your testosterone levels to be stable, you will need a once a week injection at the very least. Some doctors knowledgeable in TRT will have patients do twice a week injections for even more blood level stability. I however do my injections once per week and have been fine. I am also concerned that your dose might be too low for you as well. Have you gotten any recent blood work?? Most TRT protocols with injections call anywhere from 100-150mg/wk. In your case, you are only getting 100mg over a 2 week period which is rather low for TRT treatment especially for your age. The way to tell this would be to get some blood work. The one thing for sure is that you need to make sure your injections are weekly.
I myself, am on a protocol which includes HCG and an AI (Aromitase Inhibitor). The typical standard for HCG therapy is 500 ius per week. I inject 250Ius twice per week in my stomach with an insulin syringe. The HCG has kept my testicals kicking and have given me an overall good feeling. If you haven’t already, I would also check your estrogen. I am very estrogen sensitive and have had to get on an anti estrogen med myself. Some guys on TRT do not need to, but some people aromatize testosterone differently and it is worth a look on your next lab work. Best of luck to you.
DT – Listen to Rip. I agree with what he’s saying and it matches my experiences as well. Although I’m not on an aromatase inhibitor like Arimidex, I do have some estrogen sensitivity and have been taking Nolvadex as-needed when I feel like gyno could be an issue. My current doctor doesn’t want to prescribe an AI (I got the Nolvadex through other means) but I’m going to keep pressing for it.
As for the dosage and the timing, I currently do exactly what Rip suggests (minus the HCG) by injecting 100mg (that’s .5 mil of 200mg/mil solution) testosterone enanthate every Friday. And I feel great. I tried every other week and would always crash toward the end of the second week. Gyno was more of an issue then too.
The only thing I would mention differently from Rips suggestions is that HCG raises your testosterone levels too, so if you’re injecting that twice a week you may be able to have the same levels of testosterone in your system with slightly less testosterone injection. As he said, you’ll never really know without doing some bloodwork.
TRT and Rip,
Thanks for the advise. I have a follow-up appt with my doc in October and plan to ask him about all this. As for my dosage, I didn’t proof read my original post. I am on 200 mg/ml (thats 1cc or 1 ml of 200 mg/ml) testosterone cypionate given every two weeks. I am very interested in the doc’s thoughts of going to weekly injections.
As far as gyno, so far, Gynecomastia has not been an issue for me.
Have your doctor give you 100mg/wk for your Test C injections and see how that works out for you. There is no doubt in my mind that you need weekly injections at the very least. Heck, look up the Testosterone Cypionate profile and look at the half life yourself. Anything more than 1 week will put you on a hormonal rollercoaster. If you doctor refuses to do weekly injections, I would honestly look for another doctor. It is good you have no signs of gyno, however, some guys may not get signs of gyno even with really high estrogen numbers. Estrogen can be a little tricky but needs to be dialed in with your protocol. A good range for your estrogen is around 20-30 on your estrodial reading. Anything above 30 can be too much estrogen. Some guys I know have zero gyno but their estrogen levels are at 130. That is too high and there are risks with having too high of estrogen as well.
Just remember, everyone is different but you need to go off symptoms and get your treatment dialed in. It can take a few months to do so, but just keep working at it and tweaking it. As for your testosterone. Start at 100mg/wk and see how you feel. Some guys may need up to 150-200mg/wk which is not unheard of. I have learned since being on TRT that I need my total test to be at around 800-900 for me to feel good while some guys may feel good at 600-700 Total test. Just find your sweet spot. Best of luck to you DT.
Hey all, I am 37 years old and I’ve known something was wrong with me for a long time. I’ve had many tests over the course of the last few years and could find nothing. I thought I was going nuts. Finally I went to a Urologist a couple weeks ago and he have me a blood test to check for lowT. I got a call from the nurse Monday to set an appt. For Tuesday (9/6) because my testosterone was 76!!! The nurse said that she rarely sees them that low. My GP suggested that it may be Low T due to Metabolic syndrome (I was diagnosed with Metabolic syndrome 3 yrs ago). I’ve done some research and it looks like that’s it because everything I’ve read fits me perfectly. I’ve gained a ton of weight in the past 3 years , I was always healthy and in relatively good shape but depression, unexplained weight gain, just flat out lack of motivation and work have kept me from the gym. I’m not interested in body building, but I would like my old body back as well as my lobito. I would just like to hear your thoughts and I have two little ones at home so I am a bit hesitant try the gels (I know this doctor is a big advocate of the gels). What should I expect? I just want to feel normal again and shed all this extra fat I’ve put on… Please tell me there is a light at the end of the tunnel!! There is just so much negative crap on the Internet.
Thanks for your input,
Yes, there is definitely a light at the end of the tunnel. You will have to work at it and it may take some time, but you will definitely feel better. Now to address your post: Wow, a Total Testosterone of 76 is extremely low. In fact most 19 year old females have a testosterone level higher than you. I can only imagine how you with a level like that. However, do not feel bad, because TRT will really help your situation especially at the levels you are sitting at. I am 28 years on on TRT so it can happen to us all. I would shy away from the gels or creams. I am not a big fan of having to apply the gels/creams daily. Also, absorption is extremely variable per individual. From my experience, the gels/creams have the tendency to aromatize to estrogen very easily as compared to injections.
I would also like to see your LH Levels (Luteinizing Hormone) as well as your estrogen levels (estrodial). Have you tested your thyroid as well? As far as your Total Test levels, personally you should be at least a 650-700 on the range. Again, I never go off the range but rather how I feel. I treat symptoms, not numbers. After being on a very proficient TRT protocol for sometime, I can tell you that I need my Total Test levels at around 800-900 for me to feel optimal. Everybody is different. Go by your symptoms and how you feel. Once I got on Testosterone injections, I got my energy levels back, my libido was sky high, I lost 4 inches off my waist, have put on some lean body mass. It has completely changed my life. You are at so many risks right now with your Test levels that low, so you definitely need to do something about it. Also, please do your research and make sure you understand the proper way to administer Testosterone therapy. Do you want to have more kids down the road? If so, you may want to get on HCG to keep your natural testosterone levels kicking. Also, some people are very sensitive to estrogen like myself, so you will want to have an AI on hand. (Aromatase Inhibitor).
If your doctor is clueless about these items for TRT therapy, then I would look elsewhere for another doctor. I hated the Gel and it is much more easier for me to inject once per week. You will start to feel like new person once you begin treatment. It takes about 4-6 weeks on injections for your testosterone levels to peak, but you will notice improvements before then. You just have to be patient. Best of luck to you and your new life.
Hey thanks for the reply. I went to the Urologist today and he started me on Axitron 90mg once daily. Although I was reluctant to use gels he convinced me that Axitron is safe. It goes in my armpits and it’s a very thin gel (almost liquid) alcohol based so it drys really fast. he said that it works fast and I should be in normal range in 4-6 wks. God I hope so!! He ordered more labs for me to rule out brain tumor and I go back in two weeks to check my progress. He does think that it is my Metabolic Syndrome causing this (as I suspected) and he told me that it can pretty much be reversed with TRT (in most cases). So that’s good news! I just can’t wait to feel better! I told my doctor I pretty much feel like shit 24 hrs a day and he laughed, he said he was amazed I could get out of bed with virtually no testosterone. He seems very optimistic and that gives me hope. So you lost four inches off of your waist?? That’s awesome! In 2006 I had a 32-34″ waist, today 40!!!
To give you an idea of how much weight I’ve gained, my freshman year of college I wrestled 125lbs! That was 1994. In 2005 I weighed 175 and today 245!!! Crazy! But that is what metabolic syndrome does. I’m glad that I finally figured it out because it leads to all sorts of bad things, heart disease, stroke, etc.
Well I will keep you posted. Thanks for the encouraging words, I appreciate it!
Take care and good luck!
Let’s see how your Axitron plays out. Again, I would really emphasize that your doctor test estrogen, etc. That is a very important element with TRT protocols. I do have some powerpoints from a knowledgeable doctor by the name of Dr. John Crisler and he has been doing TRT protocols for a long time. If TRT Man will let me publish my email, please send me an email and I will send you the powerpoint slides that I have. They are pretty good and cover all the aspects of TRT Treatment. Personally after doing injections, I would never be able to go back to gels/creams. My testosterone is currently Bio Identical testosterone which is better than synthetic gels/creams. However, I hope everything works out for you and that you are able to get back to where you need to be. Best of luck!!
It’s been 5 days so far and I am starting to feel better, thank god! I am going to start working out again tomorrow. I gather you are a bodybuilder, no? I was hoping you could give me some advice. I’d like to develop a good starting workout. A little background, I lifted mist of my life. I wrestled from the age of 8 through college. After my daughter was born I pretty much quit altogether (I was 25). In 2005 I started again (mostly cardio) and did pretty good for a year and I haven’t done much since. I thought maybe you’d have some input on starting a program with TRT. Any help would be great! My email is email@example.com. Thanks Rip. Anyone else that has any input feel free!
Rip, I forgot to mention I am now 5’10 220lbs and I’d like to get down to 185lbs.
Great info on here guys. I went docs for tests as iv i have all the symptoms of low T for 20y but they said they are bottom normal for my age (43) sex drive WELL WHATS THAT..lol . Iv been treated with antidepressants for years. So i took it onto myself to self medicate at 150mg of test cyp , Its been 12 weeks and iv never felt so good in my life. Im under a pyc as they thought it was bi-polar who has now took my off all meds as he thinks iv found the problem, UK docs will not prescribe test for the symptoms only on blood . I did not take it lightly to self med but i had to give it ago as no one would listen. My pyc wants to monitor for another 3 months while on test to see if it keeps my the way i am now, Then he will gun for the doctors .
I agree do not go on bodybuilding sites as they will talk crap to you .
A hint: If you want your blood test results to be lower go off the testosterone for 4 weeks before your next blood test. Your normal testosterone production will be suppressed due to your shots so the bloodwork should come back really low. You’ll feel like crap for a few weeks but then you’ll have a scrip from your doctor. I wouldn’t even tell them you self-medicated.
Good luck and I hope you continue to feel great!
Glad to hear that you are doing much better. I was in your same boat but not nearly as long. I was feeling terrible and offered anti depressants which I refused. I went through 4 doctors and finally on the 5th doctor, I got some great service. However, with my last doctor, I told him, if you do not help me with my hormones, I will resort to self medication regardless and there is no stopping me. As for the bodybuilding sites, yes there is some very bad advice on there and a lot of the guys are looking to just cycle the steroids for muscle building purposes, however, I found my doctor off a bodybuilding site and he has been more than knowledgeable and helpful. The reason a lot of them hang out on bodybuilding sites is because people who take steroids have a good chance of messing up their endocrine system so they know people will be on that site actively looking for help, etc.
Again, some of them are scams and do a disservice to people, however, again, I found my doctor off a bodybuilding site. And the reason being is because this doctor was very open to TRT treatment and understood all avenues of it such as HCG, AI’s, frequency of injections, etc. So just don’t let one bad apple ruin the whole bunch. Take TRT Man’s advice and just get off for a month and that will tank your testosterone levels. I completely understand how you feel and don’t look at self medicating as a bad thing. What’s worse is letting men continue to live like hell and then offer an array of other drugs and not find the root of the problem. I haven’t felt so good in life since being on TRT. I simply couldn’t live without it. Best of luck!!
Problem being is my doc know i self medicate .So he knows what i would probably do . At the mo my pyc doctor has told me to carry on self medicating so he can prove that the injections have made me better than pills do. If he can make the doctors understand that its not just about hormone levels being low, its that sometimes in some people might need to run the top end of the scale . Iv only got 3 more months of self medicating to prove the point , then hopefully i will get support from my GP . Again while i feel normal and happy i will continue to self medicate
Mr T, I have been on Axiron for 3 weeks and still felt like crap (I am the guy with 76 total testosterone from above) I went back to the doc today and he started me on 300 mg test cyp every other week. Do you think I should notice a change quicker now with these injections? I hope so!
Testosterone Cypionate is a comparatively long-lasting esther so it may not make you feel better “right away”. But I’d say within a week or two you should start to feel better for sure.
300 mg every other week is 150 mg a week, which is about 50mg over what I’d expect anyone to be taking long-term for TRT. If you want to do a really mild “blast” (basically doing a steroid cycle) you could take that much, or more, but if you’re talking about taking testosterone the rest of your life I personally think 300mg every other week is overkill by about 50mg a week. Furthermore, you’ll likely feel a bit drained/down toward the end of the second week by taking it this way. I prefer to inject Test Cyp every week, as I feel this keeps me much more stable all the way through.
Either way you’re going to feel better. Keep us posted with your progress!
Hey Mr T.,
Thanks for the input. Well that’s good news. Well perhaps he started me at 300mgx2wks because my test level was so ridiculously low and he wants to get them up a bit quicker? who know, as long as I finally feel better I’ll be happy. In fact I still have 6 months worth of the Axiron left (underarm transdermal test) and I was thinking of giving myself a bit of a boost if this (the injections) didn’t start to make me feel better soon. For the past few weeks I’ve been hitting the gym 5 days/wk, I do cardio everyday, and weights at least 3x/wk. I am trying to cut down 30-40 lbs. I’d like to get down to 185 or so and hopefully begin to reverse this damn Metabolic Syndrome. I am looking forward to getting my life and body back for the rest of my 30’s!
Hi Rip how old were u when you started your TRT treatment? My husband is only 28 and he was diagnosed with low testostrone. This was shown in his blood work, when he had gone in for a physical. The doctor administered him with a shot of testostrone 200mg for the month and has asked him to return in a month for another blood work. He told me all of this when he got home from his appointment. Now im wondering if he should have gone for further testing before getting his first shot. im really scared and worried for him…any advice? how concerned should i be? He is worried as to why this happened to him so early…he didn’t really have any other symptoms…no ED, his libido was fine…soo i would appreciate any sort of advice. I am scared and worried for him.
Hi PH. I was 27 when I first started my TRT Treatment. First off, doing injections every 3 weeks is terrible and not advisable. Long Estered testosterone such as Testosterone Cypionate and Enanthate need to be injected every week to ensure stable blood serum levels. I would check some other hormones first and see what else is going on. I have come to learn that all the hormones work with each other to some degree. I would be curious to see his thyroid labs, cortisol, estrogen, DHEA, as well as his Total Testosterone and his Free Testosterone numbers.
As for you being concerned, I wouldn’t worry too much right now. The important thing is that he needs to stop taking testosterone until he gets other hormones tested. 1 shot will not ruin him or cause him any more damage so no need to worry about that. As for being worried on why this happened to him. Keep in mind that there are so many variables when it comes to low testerone. He has been getting lower and lower it seems every year. I personally believe because we consume a lot of processed/estrogenic foods that we were not consuming back in the old day. To me, Hormone Replacement Therapy is not a matter of “if” but more of a matter of “when.” If you want to live an optimal life, I personally believe most people are going to have to get on some type of hormone replacement therapy. Men can have low testosterone and have libido and strong erections so that doesn’t necessarily correlate with that. In the meantime, just have him stop the injections and get some other tests done. Google and look for Hormone Doctors/Anti Aging doctors in your area for assistance. Don’t stress too much about this. More men have low Testosterone than you know it and very few do anything about it. If TRT man doesn’t mind, you can shoot me over an email with some recent lab numbers and I would be more than happy to analyze those numbers for you and help you both out.
Rip I’ll email your address to PH if she wants me to. I don’t advise leaving an email address in text on the web anywhere because that’s how you get a box full of spam every day. But even better, if PH doesn’t mind, would be to post the numbers here and have an open discussion so others in the future can benefit from this.
PH 28 is young for this. I agree that it’s only a matter of “time” for most men (whether they go untreated or not is another story) but 30, 40, 50 years is a long commitment to make. So, as the more qualified Rip advised, I’d stop taking it until everything else is checkout and you get a second opinion. Any doctor who would put someone on lifelong treatment without doing extensive tests shouldn’t have his or her word taken as truth without a second opinion.
With all that said, if he turns out to need to go on TRT it ain’t so bad. I was stressed at first about the thought of lifelong TRT, but after about a year now I’ve come to realize how nice it is to be in good shape, have a good sex drive, be upbeat, energetic and happy “most” of the time. If I’m still otherwise healthy, and I feel like this when I’m 50 it’ll be well worth the hassle.
I am so happy to hear back from you guys, i feel a bit relieved after hearing that the one shot that he has taken is okay. We are definetly going to go for further testing after the holidays before we start with the treatment. This is all new too me and a bit confusing, It was very unexpected for the both of us. I am glad i found this post, and I dont mind sharing the results online so others could benefit from it.
Thanks alot RIP and TRT. Will post again as soon as i get more information.
All the best for the holiday season.
Hey, I’m happy that this thread is still active! I’m writing about my fiance – he started Testim 5mg/day almost 3 weeks ago. He says that he hasn’t noticed a difference in anything other than that he’s gained a few pounds. (I’m assuming that’s the initial water weight gain.) Anyway, I’m just worried.
He’s 27 yrs old, and has NEVER had a libido. I want to say that he had had sex about 5-6 times total before we started dating. He just doesn’t feel the need or drive to have sex. The thing is, it doesn’t bother him; he has energy and is happy (maybe a bit anxious and irritable at times), but a lot more happy-go-lucky & energetic than I am. We’ve been together for about 2 yrs and we have sex about once every 3 months or so, which is NOT okay with me. So I did a lot of internet research and took him to the doc to get his T tested. It came back at 178, so the doc started TRT.
He’s a bit resentful that I’m “making” him take this medicine that he doesn’t really want to take to begin with. He feels fine the way he is and doesn’t seem like there’s a problem – despite the major problem that I don’t particularly want to marry someone that doesn’t want to have sex with me.
So, now that we’ve passed the 2-week mark and nothing has changed (actually, we tried to have sex once since the start of the TRT and he couldn’t get it up, which has never happened before) he’s getting even more upset that I’m putting unneeded/unhelpful toxins in his body. I don’t know what to tell him.
Any advice on how to handle this? I want him to stick with it because I have strong hopes that it will work out. I can live with my current sex-life-style, as I have for 2 years now, but I just wish it would get better without him growing to resent me. How long does it usually take to work – libido? weight loss? anxiety/irritability? etc. ANY thoughts/comments/suggestions would be fantastic!
Oh, I forgot to add, that we’re going to want to have a family sometime in the near future (1-2 yrs). The doc didn’t ever ask us this before starting him on the Testim, so is this really bad? My fiance isn’t going to change meds, I’m lucky that he’s even agreed to take this one, so that’s not an option. Should I stop birth control and just “see what happens” or are we doomed now that he’s started this therapy? I’m going to be very frustrated if fertility becomes an issue and the doc didn’t even mention it!
Yes you’ll want to think about what this means to having children. Without taking HCG it is very unlikely that he’ll be able to get you pregnant while taking testosterone. One option is to freeze some sperm. That’s what I did, but ended up getting my wife pregnant naturally anyway when I stopped taking my testosterone for five months to see if I could get back to normal levels naturally. Yes, fertility is an issue and your doctor should have mentioned it, but these days doctors offices are just revolving doors so that is to be expected.
178 is very low for a 27-year-old. There is probably something causing this. Low testosterone is just a symptom of something else. Is the problem with his testes (primary hypogonadism) or with some other part of his endocrine system, such as the hypothalamus, pituitary gland (could be a type of tumor), which is secondary hypogonadism. Your doctor shouldn’t just prescribe testosterone and then forget about it. You need to at least try and find out what the real problem is.
Give it time. Two weeks isn’t enough. After a month he should go back and get his testosterone levels checked again. Anything about 600 would be about normal for someone his age.
It looks like TRT man gave you some solid info. I will also give you my 2 cents so take it for what it’s worth. I am 28 years old and have been on TRT and I haven’t felt better in my life since being on TRT. His testosterone levels are really in the gutter to put it nicely. Did you know that the average 19 year old female can have a total testosterone level of 80-110 on average?? He is basically becoming a woman with those levels. Instead of complaining at your for trying to help him, he should realize what risks he is taking with those low levels. At 30 years old, men’s testosterone levels can drop 1-3% each year from then on. Could he afford to go any lower?? I think not. Besides, his chances of heart disease, heart attack, diabetes are increased now with those levels. So therefore, those levels need to be brought up. I am a big advocate in treating symptoms, not numbers. For example, I need my total testosterone levels to be around 900-1000 in order for me to feel perfect. I have the sex drive of a 19 year old and I feel great overall.
Like TRT man said, you need to figure out why he has low T. I know that when I personally got into a motorcycle accident, I suffered a head injury and that pituatary stress put my testosterone in the gutter. So you need to check all hormones to see what is going on as well as a MRI of his pituatary?? Was he a heavy drinker?? How is his diet?? Is he overweight?? What are his thyroid numbers?? What is his Cortisol number? Also, I would like to see his Free Testosterone number as well as his SHBG (Sex Hormone Binding Globin), DHEA, Thyroid panel, Cortisol and Estrogen numbers. Again, a lot of men with low T have elevated estrogen and elevated estrogen can lower T as well as kill libido. So even if he is on gel and his estrogen is elevated, it could still cause him to have no libido, etc.
As for the gels/creams, I freaking hate them. They are worthless in raising numbers sufficiently in my opinion. It is absorbed differently each day you apply. One day you might absorb 80% of it, the next day it may be half of that. Once a week injections are the way to go in my opinion. That is of course if you determine that he needs to be on TRT therapy. I do know that the gels/creams can aromatize into estrogen very easily and that can cause issues as well. They can also raise DHT higher than injections as I have seen in the past. Also, an estrogen (estrodial) test is needed because if
he has a high level of estrogen, he will need to take an AI (Aromatase Inhibitor) to lower estrogen.
As for fertility, HCG is needed in the protocol like TRT Man stated. First reason is because number 1, men don’t like to see their testicals shrinking. Second is because Testicular atrophy occurs because of the depressed LH level (Luteinizing Hormone), secondary to the HPTA suppression that TRT induces. So therefore, if you want to have kids, you will need him to get on some HCG.
As for your fiance. You need to set him straight. Testosterone is what makes us men. No offense, but his levels are almost that of a female. You are trying to save his life and your relationship. Trust me, I had no libido, couldn’t get hard, had no sex desire for quite awhile. It almost ruined things with my wife. The difference is that I was recovering from an injury and I was researching and trying to find the problem. Now fast forward, I have lowered my bodyfat, I lost inches off my waist. My sex drive is higher than when I was in high school and I just feel more manly and great about my life. Again, sex is a big important aspect in a relationship. If he is not willing to take care of himself and salvage the relationship, then you need to perhaps move on. Again, with his levels now, pretty soon he will need to be wearing a dress. No offense. Also, as you will find out, most doctors don’t know very much about effective TRT treatment. They don’t monitor other important hormones and a lot of the time they can make the patient worse off. Again, you need to have your man properly diagnosed. I have my TRT prescription through a great TRT clinic so if you need a referral, I would be more than happy to give you their contact info. Good luck.
Thanks, guys, for the fast replies.
I’ve been talking to him about getting more tests done – I’m in 100% agreement that he should find out what is causing this. Nobody his age should naturally be that low, so there has to be a reason. I told him that at his 3-month check-up we were going to run more tests, but I’m thinking that I may just schedule him with an Endo and have everything done there. I’m a bit upset with the GP for not mentioning the fertility issue anyway. I think I want to take him to a specialist; I don’t think he’ll have any issues with that, it’s just some blood work, right? lol.
I do know that the GP tested his thyroid and it was “in-range” (but mine is technically in-range too, but I’m on levothryoxine anyway). We don’t have anything to compare it to, though, because he doesn’t ever get sick, so he hadn’t been to the doctor in about 10 years until I came along. He isn’t a heavy drinker and doesn’t do any drugs. His diet can be improved, but we’re working on that because he was also put on cholesterol meds. Maybe the bad cholesterol is from the low-T? He’s a bit overweight, but not by very much – he’s not obesely fat, but could definitely stand to drop some pounds. (5’10” 225ish) I’m hoping that the Testim will kick in and kick-start the weight loss, and then will also give him the extra energy to want to workout.
Okay, what else did y’all ask? He says that he’s ever had any injury to his testes (although I often joke that they are unusually large), which makes me convinced that it’s in his pituitary gland. He did just have a nodule removed from his thyroid, so maybe he has a nodule in there as well. ?? Once I get better numbers, I’ll update. I’ve just never heard of anything like this before – it’s refreshing to know that it’s not just him. And that’s not meant to be an insult to you guys – I’m relieved that there’s hope. 🙂
Thanks for everything! I’ll keep updating as I find out more, because I’m sure that there are other ppl out there wondering the same things that I was/am. (Both men and women.) And, it’s nice to find a message-board that isn’t run by bodybuilders. 🙂
I was glad that we were able to help you out. Just a bit of advice for you. Personally, until you get further testing, I would have him discontinue his Testim gel/cream. It will not give a perfect complete picture of what is going on with his hormones if he is already on something. Secondly, taking him to an Endocrinologist will be like pissing up a rope. Take him to someone specialized in hormone treatment. I know Endos say that thy are able to treat hormones, but I went through a handful of them and they didn’t have a clue in regards to thyroid or testosterone treatment. Again, him being on cholesterol meds is ridiculous until you can prove that all else is working properly. When I was hypothryoid with Low T, my lipid profile was jacked up. Once I started balancing my hormones, my cholesterol was back in check.
Google search doctors specializing in hormone replacement therapy. I found some good D.O’s (Doctors of Osteopath) and D.O.M’s (Doctors of Oriental Medicine). It is really easy. Just call and talk with the secretaries that pick up the phone and ask them what types of hormones they treat. Ask them if they treat the adrenals. In my opinion, doctors who are familiar with Adrenal fatigue, etc are better at balancing hormones. Again, the adrenals produce around 65% of his bodie’s testosterone so they need to be familiar with them. Lastly, a bit of advice for yourself Karen. The worst thing you are putting into your body right now is T4 only medication (levothyroxine). The body is not meant to live on T4 only. The best thing you could get on is a T4/T3 combo medication. You would be amazed at how much better you feel. And I am not being subjective by stating that. I don’t think a patient in America needs to be on T4 only medication. It is terrible. Do some research on Levothyroxine Vs. Armor Thryoid, etc. and see for yourself. I am a big thyroid advocate and post on several boards. Google search the Yahoo Thyroid Group and join that group. They are very knowledgeable and it is free. Last but not least, if TRT man is ok with it, go to http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com . That is the site where I learned a lot about the how bad T4 only medication is and again, it is free info and will greatl benefit you. Best of luck. Keep us posted on his progress.
I’m 56 and just started TRT because I had no energy. My number was 276. My doc put me on axiron and i could feel a difference in the first couple of days. My energy level came back and I didnt have to force myself to get off the couch and work out. Its been 2 months and my followup blood test came back at 177. WTF?
Has the axiron stopped my normal testosterone production? Is the only recourse to add more supplemental testosterone to get to a normal level?
Looks like the gel is no longer doing its job which is why I hate gels/creams. Here is the problem. Since it is absorbed transdermally, and thats where many aromatase enzymes are, users usually end up having the effect wear off after time. Around 5 weeks on average in my experience because eventually too much gets converted to estrogen. Aromatase enzyme is highly concentrated in the skin. Therefore it is going to convert to estrogen at a high rate. Then all that estrogen stress usually raises SHBG and you can end up with diabetes or a heart attack. I wouldn’t wish T gels or creams on my worst enemy. There are posts of people claiming to be covering themselves in the stuff and after several months, or as in my case sometimes less, their T levels don’t go above 300. Even when the stuff works, which it might the first few days, you feel like you are on a 3 hour high…a menopausal rollercoaster as your levels crash and then you need more. The idea of rubbing cream on myself twice a day is absurd too.
Switch to once a week injections and you will feel much better and your serum testosterone levels will raise to a nice range. Typically guys take anyway from 100-200mgs per week and feel great. I take 125-150mg per week and my test levels are around 900-1000. Also what are your estrogen levels?? I bet they are through the roof but your doctor probably doesn’t care to test it. Also higher estrogen lowers testosterone output. Best of luck.
My 19 year old son has been suffering from a combination of chronic fatigue/extremely low energy, depression/anxiety, weight gain, irritable bowel syndrome, sleep disorders (sleep phase being the primary), and a variety of other possibly unrelated problems ranging from skin disorders to weakened joints and chest muscle pains reminiscent of heart trouble. So far no doctor has been able to connect the dots, but after some internet reading we asked the primary care doctor to test his testosterone. His levels are very low (total ranging from 136 to 177 depending on time of day and lab and unbound and free both coming in well below normal ranges). His other blood chemistry, thyroid numbers to LH and FSH have all been normal, although his estrogen number was a bit above the normal range. His MRI showed no pituitary tumor and cortisol tests so far have not been abnormal. His other general blood work shows nothing out of the ordinary. The endo says that depression can lower T, but he also says this is reallly really low for it to be just depression. He’s been on 1 tube of testim daily for the past 5 days and he’s gained a lot of what I assume is water weight. He went back to college 5 days ago and is feeling generally awful–muscle aches and spasms, bloated and “fat” (he’s even got stretch marks coming on his arms above the elbow), slightly lightheaded at times, and stressed. He told me yesterday that there was also the feeling of having more energy–at odds with all his other side effects, if that’s what they are(?). Last night he slept poorly, waking many times and so worn out that he fell asleep for several hours around noon time. He’s terrified of gaining more weight (being currently 60 pounds above his normal end of high school weight) and he’s afraid he won’t be able to make it through the semester with passing grades if he continues to feel so awful. Any helpful thoughts or advice?
Hey guys, I’m just giving an update on my fiance.
I took him to his 30-day check-up for the Testim and his numbers were unbelievely low. His total a.m. number only rose 21 points. Before the Testim he was 240, 30 days later he was 261. In the afternoon, he tested 180 (compared to 178 before the Testim). I think that I noticed some behavior/attitude improvement with the gel, he was a little bit happier, but there was no progress in the libido department. After the blood tests came back, the GP called and said that his numbers were fine and that the Testim was working, so there would be no changes. I was quite upset by this. So, I went searching for a new doctor and immediately had him quit the Testim. It wasn’t helping and it was potentially making him sterile, so why take it??
I ended up finding a really good urologist here in Austin that specializes in men’s reproductive health and TRT. He’s awesome. (I’d give a shout-out, but I don’t know if TRT Man wants that on his site.) He put my fiance on Clomid about a week ago. I’m seeing so much more behavioral improvement in one week of Clomid then I saw in 38 days of Testim. The libido is not here yet, but I’m just amazed at the energy, lack of irritability & depression, etc that the Clomid has already made! So, I’m keeping the hope for “one day”…
In the urologist’s examination, the doc found that my fiance had 2 varicoceles, one on each side. He is suggesting surgery, but there is only a 70% chance that it will make the T levels higher with no idea about how high “higher” means. I know that there is also a 70% chance of increasing his sperm count (also, how much higher?) and a 100% chance that the integrity of the DNA of the sperm will improve. I’m just wondering if any of y’all know anything about varicoceles. Is the surgery worth it? Will it make a huge difference with his T, or is mostly just good for reproduction? We’ve decided to see how the Clomid works out for now, and then in a year, when we are ready to start trying for a family, reconsider the surgery. I’m just wanna know other people’s stories with this surgery. If it really, actually will help with the T, and we are going to do surgery anyway, is it better to just do it now?
As far as his total numbers for everything: His blood work was done after 30 days on Testim, so the numbers are skewed a bit. Also, I gave my only copy of the results to the urologist. >.< But, I do remember that we checked for every single thing that was even mentioned on this site. With the exception of the total T and Cortisol, they were all dead center in range. The T was 261 and the Cortisol was 7. (Seven is the lowest number “in range” for an a.m. male sample.) Should I be concerned about the Cortisol, as well? In my opinion, it seems really low. But, free T, Prolactin, Estrogen, LH, etc, all came back dead center of “in range”.
RIP — thanks for the advice on the thyroid stuff. I researched it for hours and had my doctor switch me to Armor. I’m now on 1 grain, 3x/day and I feel fabulous! I never thought I could actually feel this good. 🙂 I’m still playing with the dosage – it’s been less than a month – so I don’t know what my final grain count will be. But, thanks so much!! I’m even getting my dad and sister to change to Armor!! 🙂
I am glad your fiance is doing much better and that you are feeling better on new thyroid medicine. I know first hand what it is like to feel like crap due to improper thyroid treatment. Remember, you are your own best doctor. Keep the research up and be diligent in your efforts to improve your health including your fiance’s. As for varicoceles, I am not too familiar with them so hopefully someone else will chime in to provide more assistance.
As for his cortisol numbers, that is a really low. I would like to see his cortisol at least 15 in the AM. Preferably a 18-20 though. Low cortisol is a sign of adrenal fatigue so he does need to look into that. Having low cortisol and stressed adrenals can skew several other things including thyroid and testosterone treatment. Find a doctor who is familiar with adrenal fatigue. There is a doctor who has a good adrenals book by the name of Dr. James Wilson. Very informative. To help restore the adrenals, he will need to balance his diet, cut out alcohol, smoking, sugars and eat every 2-3 hours. Also, cut out caffiene as well. Eat a good Paleo/Mediterranean diet and take some adrenal supplements like Licorice root. Also, I take some Adreset as well. The name of the maker is Metagenics and they make my Licorice Root and Adreset. You can find bottles of them on Amazon. I would take a Licorice root pilll at 10am. And then the Adreset at 2pm.
That will help support a healthy cortisol metabolism. As for his Testosterone, a Clomid restart is a feasable option. If the doctor is not throwing in some HCG in that combo, he definitely needs to, especially if you are looking at it from a reproductive stand point and if you want to have kids down the road. With the low T levels he has, I seriously doubt he can get his levels back up to optimal levels. I mean, let’s say he gets back up to 500 Total Testosterone, but for his age, he should be a lot higher if possible. So again, see how the Clomid restart works and add some HCG in there and then after the course, do a test. As for estrogen numbers, being in the mid range of the estrogen test can be high for most guys. The range goes from around 10-80. If my estrogen gets above 30, I start feeling the ill effects of too much estrogen. My golden number is 20. Some guys can tolerate more at 40 and feel good. It just depends on the person. If your fiance does decide to do TRT because the Clomid restart fails, then make sure he does testosterone injections. Nothing can beat injections. Trust me. Additionally, I would be more than happy to provide you some medical literature to present to his doctor to help your situation. Remember, knowledge is nothing unless it is shared. Please feel free to reply and leave me your email address and I can send you the medical literature that I have collected over the years to help you out. Again, I wish you both the best and I know you will both be in optimal health soon.
Krony here, my last post to you guys was end September, I believe. Well I’ll make this one short and sweet. 5 months into treatment (injections) and I have never felt better! I tell everyone it’s like someone finally turned the window wipers on!! I have lost 20lbs and change (quite q bit of cardio though) I’d like to loose another 15. Getting solid again, and I never really knew exactly how bad my libido was until I GOT ONE! My wife can’t keep up! This has been (aside from my daughter being born) the biggest lifechanging journey in my 37 years. God bless TrT! And thank you guys so much for your support as if it weren’t for your guidance I might still be struggling with Axiron Gel!!!
Than you so much,
I am glad to you are doing much better. I am telling you, the injections make the world of difference now that you can actually absorb the testosterone. TRT is like wine, it just gets better with time. I have trimmed down nicely since being on TRT and I still notice affects to this day of all the positive things it has changed for me. I was in your shoes at one point so anytime I can help or lend assistance, I do just that. I wish you the best of luck on your journey!!! Glad we could help you.
I am a 25 year old male who has lived an active and athletic life for most of my life working ut 5x a week at my local gym. About 2 and a half years ago thats all changed I noticed that the body I worked hard to attain was slowly shrinking. I also noticed that it took much longer to grow facial hair when I once could grow qa five o’clock shadow the day I shaved it took almost a week to grow stubble. I also noticed that my mood, cognitive ability, ambition, and overal feeling of well being had disappeared. Worse I noticed a sudden decrease in my libido, no ED but low libido and a huge drop in semen volume and an increase in my refractory period. I was also depressed moody, irritable, and just overall a grouch. But what made things worse I was that I noticed that my testicles had shrunk and that their were thick wormy like veins in my scrotum. I turned to the Internet and found out about varicoceles. I went to several urologists and I was diagnosed with stage 2 and 3 varicoceles in both testicles. My testosterone levels came back and initially it was 276 than 315. I switched urologists to a renowned one known for operating on varicocles. I explained my symptoms to him and he prescribed me with clomid at 25 mgs which I have been taking now for over 4 months. My latest values came back and my testosterone was at 453 but I still exhibited the same symptoms as I did before. Longer periods to grow facial hair, lack of libido, lack of ambition. I am scheduled for surgery in 2 weeks but I know that once I stop the clomid my levels will go back to the crap they were before and even with the surgery there is only a 70% chance of improving the fertility issues that have been caused by the varicoceles and only an average increase of testosterone by 100 dg/l. I am only doing this to try to improve my fertility issues because me and my girlfriend would like to start having children once we get married in about a year but what I am also concerned of is my testosterone levels. I have scheduled to meet with a dr at an anti aging clinic he is a DO who specializes in hormone replacement therapy. I know about hcg, about SERMs, aout antiestrogens and the like. I just wanted to know if anyone has gotten their significant other pregnant while on hrt and also whether anyone my age is on hrt. I’m tired of being tired.
I got my wife pregnant while on an “hrt break”. I had been on HRT for a couple of years off and on, mostly on, and then went off for six months and took some HCG at first too. I am almost 35 and was 33 at the time she got pregnant. I’ve been on HRT off and on since I was about 30. I feel much better now that I’m on permanent HRT and have accepted it as a lifelong therapy. But all other options should be considered first since it is a weekly pain in the ass (literally and figuratively) and can be expensive too, not to mention health concerns, etc… In the end, my quality of life is so much better on TRT and I’m glad I made the decision after weighing all of my options.
Is there anyone under 30 yrs old on hrt or anyone whose had children while on hrt?
The thing is I’m sub fertile as of right now bc of the varicoceles once I get them removed there’s a 70% chance of improvement but the testosterone would only improve by an avg of 100 and once I stop clomid I’ll go back down to the 300’s, right now I’m at 453 and I still feel the symptoms of low t minus ED. I don’t know of any other options except maybe moving up to hcg instead of just clomid but no doctor seems to know too much about them. Would a dr at an anti aging clinic prescribe hcg solely to help improve testosterone? I know the testes become desensitized to their effect after an extended period of being on them.
V V, it isn’t “cheap” but I went to the fertility clinic and had some of my little swimmers frozen for a rainy day before I started lifelong TRT. I recommend anyone do the same if they think they may want kids later.
How much does hcg tend to run when prescribed in a clinic?
And is it possible to maintain a total testosterone level of 1000 on trt for life?
V V It is possible to stay within that range, but I would think your life might be a little shorter if you did. Of course everyone is different. That isn’t nearly as high as many bodybuilders keep theirs, but it is higher than “normal” has to be for most people. I prefer around 800. I feel “normal” at 600 but 800 is where I feel “optimal”. Again, everyone is different. Just be sure to see your doctor regularly for blood pressure, cholesterol, liver enzymes, prostate specific androgens, red blood cell count and and any other test that should be done for anyone on long-term testosterone replacement.
Trt i assume the hcg didn’t hold your testosterone to the level you wanted it to be. What can I expect if I go that route? And will an anti aging clinic prescribe that before even considering testosterone replacement?
V V it is going to depend on what the “cause” is. In my opinion, taking HCG to treat a symptom caused by something else has the danger of potentially adding another problem, like gonadotriopin insensitivity. No, the HCG didn’t work for me long-term, though I may use it now and then if I want to say hi to my balls.
Well my surgery is in three days and I feel that the clomid hasn’t been working as well as it should. Ive been an avid weightlifter and wrestler since hs and have had a pretty good physique most of my adult life till recently. I know it’s kind of vain but it sucks to be only 25 and feel like I’m 75 and to lose everything I’ve worked hard for. What’s even worse is the overwhelming mental fogginess and moodiness that I’ve been feeling which doesn’t help with my job being an oncology nurse. Enough with the ranting I guess, my next question is if this is going to be something I’m going to have to commit to for the rest of my life what places in the ny metropolitan area would be a good place to go to for testosterone replacement therapy. I’m scheduled for April at a clinic with bodylogicmd in manhattan. Does anyone have any experience with that place? Or are there any other places I can go to that would be better? Thanks for all the help and advice it is much appreciated
Just an FYI to everyone considering HRT or TRT do some research. Most physicians are clueless when it comes to this which is why anti-aging clinics are much better. Essentially, the half life of testosterone enanthate or cypionate (which are the most common forms of test used for TRT) is 7 days. So, why the heck would docs give an injection every two weeks or even every four weeks? It needs to be done weekly or else you’ll feel great for a week and then crappy until your next injection. Ideally, injections would be done biweekly. So, say you need 150mg per week then you would do two 75mg injections per week to keep levels stable. Also, if docs don’t regular blood work then go to a different doc. The most realistic side effects to worry about are chlesterol, blood pressure, and hematocrit levels. If cholesterol is out of whack and/or BP check your diet and if hematocrit comes back high you need to get blood drawn asap….asap….seriously. Other than that you’ll be good; most sides are really blown out of proportion or from asinine dosages that strength athletes or bodybuilders use. Heck, new research has shown that really low test levels in males can actually be linked to heart attacks so TRT can not only improve quality of life it may actually extend it.
I agree with you, but also think a lot of us folks who read about TRT and steroids who aren’t doctors tend to forget that “half life” means the amount of the drug active in your system has decreased by half. It does NOT mean that the drug is no longer effective at all. When you chart out something with a one-week half life over the course of months you will see that the line becomes more and more stable. It will never be as stable as a weekly injection, but it’s not like you keep dropping off a cliff.
First off, I want to say Thanks to TRT Man for making this blog. I have found the personal insights that you and others had shared here enlightening as I have started my own TRT adventure.
I’m 43 and for more years that I care to admit (7 years roughly) I have un-knowingly struggled with the symptoms of Low T. I was always tired. Not able to concentrate well. Fell asleep instantly when ever I sat still for 5 minutes. I was constantly drinking coffee just to maintain some level of alertness at work. During this time we had 2 small kids (18 months apart) so life was very very busy and my wife and I had very little time for intimacy, but I was able to perform when we did. As they got older, and life started settling down, the symptoms remained. I went to my GP, and after blood tests discovered my Testosterone was low. (224 and 226 am test about a month apart) We discussed the treatment options, creams vs. patches vs. shots. I also researched here and other websites to see what others experienced. I did read where TRT man and others recommended an endocrinologist, but opted to stay with my GP. He is a very good doctor that was knowledgeable into the treatment. He recommended shots to start since I would see the quickest, acting and removes any complications with topical. Unlike what I’ve seen other start of with, he started me on what he called “a healthy dose” for the 1st 3 months, do a test of blood tests, and adjust from there. Unlike the low doses every two weeks doses I’ve seen other people get started on, I’m taking 2 cc of testosterone CYP 200mg/ml every two weeks (400mg). I saw an immediate change. Focus, energy and drive like I haven’t felt in years! Initially I had trouble staying hydrated and felt out of sorts right after a shot. Not sure if this normal or related to the amount I’m taking. I’ve been on two months and overall things are doing really well. I did have Low T symptoms return 8 days after the 1st shot, about 11 after the 2nd, but it was almost not noticeable the 3rd. I have gotten sore and tender nipples right before a shot, but those go away soon after the shot. All and all, its been a big improvement in lots of subtle ways.
After working with the shots, I thing that is they way to stay. It is a shot, but its once every two weeks, not the daily hassle of creams. I have found a way to get the shots pretty cheaply. My insurance will only cover the shot if they deliver it to my Dr.s office. Also I have a high deductible plan, so I will be paying all that cost out of pocket. The pharmacy I use has a drug discount plan that for $20 a year, reduces the cost to about $34 a month. Not to bad. I’ll be updating after I get my blood check and see were my dosage goes.
Thanks again for all the help.
I’m glad to hear this site has been of use to you. That’s the whole reason it’s here – to help people who are going through what others have already been through, and to learn from others’ mistakes and experience.
On that note, I recommend the weekly shot. It would make it less likely that your nipples would get sore/itchy every time (which can add up to gyno over the course of years) and your levels would be more consistent. But it’s not the end of the world if you have to do every two weeks, as Cypionate is a long-lasting esther. I’m actually on a lower dose than you right now. I take .75 cc/mil every week instead of 1 a week or 2 every two weeks. I’ll probably go back up to 1cc (200mg) every week here in a few months, but my wife is “out of commission” right now sexually and we have a little 9-month old at home (sounds like you understand how that goes!) so I figure having a high sex drive at the moment is just a waste.
I haven’t had my blood tested but I “feel” like this does puts me at about a 500-600 ng/mil testosterone level. I feel best when I’m between 800 and 1,000. Over 1,000 and I start to get a little bit stressed and agro at times (nothing like roid rage, but I’m certainly not as even-tempered as I am at 800) and if I go under 500 I really start to feel like an old man with all of the usual low-T symptoms.
With time we all get a sense of what works best for us. You are lucky to have a good GP doctor who understands your situation. My advice is to stockpile what you can and rotate through the stock to keep it fresh. You never know when you may have to start seeing another doctor who thinks that 200mg every 4 weeks is “appropriate” despite having never studied as an endocrinologist.
Keep us posted!
TRT man is right. You are definitely better off doing once a week injections. I personally need to inject every 7 days, otherwise I get a downward spiral as my levels get low. Also, 200mg/wk seems a little high for conventional TRT but it all depends on bloodwork. I take 100-125mg per week and my total test level was 977 five days after my injection. With higher testosterone levels, you may experience high blood pressure, etc. so make sure to keep an eye on that.
Also, have your doctor check your estrogen level as well. Sore and puffy nipples is a sign of a little too much estrogen. Most men like to see their estrogen level between 20-30. Also, keep in mind that estrogen fluctuates depending on your estrogen sensitivity as well as your dose. When I run just 100mg per week of Test, I can lower my anti-estrogen meds quite a bit. However, when I blast 200-300mg per week of test, I get estrogen flare ups and sore nipples, etc. If you are experiencing too much estrogen, then an anti-estrogen needs to be implemented in your protocol. I prefer to use Aromasin for my anti-estrogen. Just an idea for you.
Thanks for your response. I do agree that weekly shots of 1 cc or less sounds like the best way to keep levels consistent. My GP was receptive to the idea, but wanted to try the 2 week plan first. Since even at 2 week intervals, i seem to building up a base that I’m not feeling low T symptoms right before a shot. All I know that this is much better than before TRT, so I’m willing to live with some twiking.
An update… Went to the doctor to review the results of my 1st blood work since starting TRT. I had my blood drawn the day before my shot, so I should be on my lowest number for the 2 week period. It was 657. So, that would mean I’m overshooting at the start of the shot. He recommended I try 1.5cc every 2 weeks. I’m day 9 after the 1.5 cc shot, and so far I am still feeling well. Nipple tenderness has been less this go around. Depending on how low I feel right before my next shot, I’ll consider going to .75cc a week. that would keep the level more even. As always, thanks for the great blog.
I am trying another thread to see if anyone knows why AndroGel must be applied only to the upper arms. I know this may not seem important, but I often seem to need a larger area to spread the gel. I cannot find any detail about this on the mfg website or elsewhere. Is is that important? No, I am not applying to my scrotum or anywhere near.
I have applied Testim to my quads and thighs before and it seemed to work fine. You’re looking for areas without a lot of hair though, which is why typically I think upper arms and shoulders is good.
Hey everyone. I’m reading through the blog here and it’s pretty interesting. I’ll be 32 next month and have been feeling really shitty and lethargic for years now. My doctor’s did all kinds of tests because I’m very moody, don’t sleep well, etc, etc. Basically every symptom except sex drive and getting/staying hard. I was just told I should start TRT and I”m frankly really happy about it. I know it sucks to have to commit to something for life at my age, but I really feel like I’m losing it right now. Can’t concentrate much, very irritable (even to my wife), and just a miserable person. I’ve felt shitty for awhile, and many tests were run, but I guess no one thought it was LowT because I’m young. Kinda funny, my wife thought I might have high testosterone and that’s why I was often moody. At this point I just feel really relieved to have found that I am, in fact, low. Actually cried a little the other day because it’s been such a long road recently and have been feeling more and more confused, and irritable. I remember telling my mom a few years ago that I felt like I couldn’t think and concentrate right. At the time the only thing I could liken it to is if you had a concussion and everything was slightly foggy. Cognition slower, thoughts slower, and obviously over fatigued and all around just no energy from the time I wake to the time I sleep. Toss and turn all night as well. I’m really hoping this helps some, or all of this.
I guess my biggest question is which route should I choose. They seem to all have their benefits/disadvantages. Shot is once a week, but there’s highs and lows and some docs won’t allow you to do it yourself, Cream seems like a decent option, but I tend to have sensitive skin, and talk of boils and skin problems scare me, but that seems the best option to try first, and the patch, which doesn’t seem that plausible to me. Seems like they would come off a lot, especially during sleep, or a workout when you’re sweating. From anyone who has tried, what do you think the best option is, and why? I would lean towards the shot probably, but IDK if my doctor will allow me to administer it myself and I know I won’t go in weekly to see them, so if they won’t allow me to do it, then that’s out. What’s the best option, assuming I could talk my doctor into letting me give the shot to myself (I have a decent relationship with my DR., so it’s at least possible depending on laws, I guess. I’m sure it’s illegal some places). Thanks for any comments.
Congratulations for moving forward with you life. I hope you’re feeling better already.
One thing you could consider before going on TRT is to try anti-depressants. Sometimes men get depressed, which lowers their testosterone level. It’s a chicken-or-the-egg sort of situation. Raising your testosterone will make you feel better, but it might not be the “cause” of your issues.
Either way, I hope you have found some relief and are getting your life back. I’m also glad you have a supportive wife to help you through this.
In terms of which route to take with testosterone therapy, I’d go with weekly shots. There isn’t much up and down within a week. If you take a shot every two weeks there could be some ups and downs. I don’t like the gels or creams because it can transfer to your significant other or children by touch. It doesn’t seem to be as stable for me either, and tends to make be break out in the application area.
I haven’t tried pellets.
Well I am 42 as of today! Last month went to a clinic and they ran the blood work to tell me my T is low…348 total Test, 7.8 Free Test (7-21 range). It is weird since I have done several natural INBF (polygraph tested bodybuilding contests) and competed in HeavyWeight class at 5’10” so I have some decent muscle. However, been having typical symptoms of low T and finally got tested. I just was totally surprised to be honest. The biggest indicator was low libido and weight gain around the midsection (even though I have been eating clean). So no AS usage but workout everyday and cardio as well. I guess I am just old
Anyways, they got me on HCG shots (500 UI?) twice a week. So after some research I see that HCG should be used if your LH is low? My LH is currently 5.0 (1.7 – 8.6 normal range) The Dr. did not seem to think that HCG was going to help, but thought that a one month trial is worth a try before using Test. Any thoughts?
Also, thanks for starting this blog….very helpful!
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