Testosterone Replacement Combats Symptoms of AndroPause (Low T) in Men.
Testosterone helps with muscle creation, fuels libido, plays a role in sperm production, and contributes to normal erections. Testosterone also fosters the production of red blood cells, boosts mood, and aids cognition. After the age of 40, the production of testosterone begins to slow down. As men get into their 50s, 60s, and beyond, they may start to have signs and symptoms of low testosterone (decreased sex drive, erectile dysfunction, decreased energy, reduced muscle mass and bone density, etc). Collectively, these signs and symptoms are often called hypogonadism (“hypo” meaning low functioning and “gonadism” referring to the testicles). It is estimated that the condition affects anywhere from two to six million men in the United States. Yet it is an underdiagnosed problem, with only about 5% of those affected receiving treatment. Dr. Abraham Morgentaler, an associate professor at Harvard Medical School and the director of Men’s Health Boston, discussed in an interview the pros and cons of difference testosterone-replacement therapy options and well as best practices for measuring testosterone levels.Male Menopause? That’s right ladies, men also experience a change in hormones as they age. As men age, they will experience Andropause (Testosterone Deficiency Symptom or Low T) also known as ADAM (Androgen Deficiency of the Aging Male. Get the facts about andropause, testosterone replacement therapy and available testosterone treatment options. A comparison of AndroGel, Testim, Testosterone Cypionate and compounded testosterone cream is included.
Symptoms of Andropause or Low T
- Irritability or moodiness
- Difficulty concentrating
- Low energy
- Low sex drive
- Erection problems
- Increased fat deposition
- Trouble recovering from exercise
- Hair loss
How is Testosterone Measured?
According to Dr Morgentaler, most medical schools teach doctors about total testosterone (all the testosterone in the body). However, only half of the total testosterone circulating in the body is available to the cells. The majority of testosterone in the body is tightly bound to a carrier molecule called sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). The biologically available part of the total testosterone (the ones not binding to SHBG molecules) are called free testosterone. Free testosterone is a good indicator for measuring low testosterone. Free testosterone can be measured utilizing serum or saliva testing. For further information on serum vs saliva testing please see our previous post.
What forms of testosterone-replacement therapy are available?
Testosterone Cypionate is a form of testosterone available via injection. Patients can either visit their doctor on a regular basis for an injection or self administer. The disadvantage of testosterone injections according to Dr Morgentaler is “a roller-coaster effect can also occur as blood testosterone levels peak and then return to baseline”.
Testosterone Patch is a form of topical testosterone therapy which helps maintain a more uniform level of blood testosterone. According to Dr Morgentaler it has a very high rate of skin irritation. “In one study, as many as 40% of men who used the patch developed a red area on their skin”.
Testosterone Creams or gels. There are two commercially available brands of testosterone available: AndroGel and Testim. AndroGel and Testim come in single application tubes or in a special dispenser. The testosterone gels are topically applied to areas such as shoulders, chest, or upper arms once a day. According to Dr Morgentaler, these gels “tends to be absorbed to good levels in about 80% to 85% of men”. Unlike AndroGel and Testim, compounded testosterone can be customized to the exact dosage needed. Another advantage of compounded testosterone over AndroGel and Testim is that it can be made more concentrated so that one only needs to apply a small amount thus desiring the risk of transference to others.
Testosterone Replacement Product Comparison Chart
|Formulation||Product Available||Dosing Range||Advantages||Disadvantages|
|Testosterone Cypionate||Depo-Testosterone||100mg/wk IM or 200mg every 2 weeks IM||Improves symptoms, inexpensive, longer intervals between dosing||Requires injection, fluctuations in serum testosterone levels|
|Topical Gels||Testim and AndroGel||5-10g (50-100mg testosterone) applied daily||Corrects symptoms, flexible dosing, ease of application, good tolerability||Potential for secondary exposure|
|Transdermal Patches||Androderm||1-2 patches (5-10mg) every 24 hours||Ease of application, corrects symptoms, mimics diurnal rthym, less erythrocytosis||Low serum testosterone levels achieved, skin irritation likely|
|Source: US Pharmacist, A Jobson Publication|
Decrease the risk of hormone transference with compounded testosterone hormone replacement formulations available at Great Earth Compounding Earth. With our compounding testosterone cream all you need is 1 gram of cream which decreases the risk of transferring your testosterone medication to your partner or pet.
Want to get your hormone levels tested? Give us a call or visit our online store. Testosterone is available by prescription only, to get more information please call us at 310-550-1822.