2 Years and Still Trying To Recover, Where To Go From Here?

Hi Guys,

I’m in a pickle. I’ve been trying to recover from my past cycle from early 2016. I left my body alone for a year hoping things would work itself out but unfortunately that wasnt the case. I started to look for solutions in Sept 2017 and I’m still trying to find the issue.

-My Test levels have looked great in the past, always upper range.
-Prolactin always low
-Estrogen has always been tricky. I’ve had it as high as 55 and as low as 18 but no direct changes to my condition.
-FSH & LH always fluctuates between 3.0-5.0
SHBG has been a bitch but i recently got it down to as low as 8 and still nothing.

I’ve tried a restart with Hcg, Nolva and Clomid, proviron, arimidex solo and aromasin solo etc. nothing has returned my libido, well being, energy, etc.

I even tried trt for 2 months. It did supply me with a little more energy and some libido from weeks 2-3 but eventually it all platueaed.

I’ve been seeing 2 endo’s. They’re both very smart and are genuinely interested in helping.
At different points they suggested that my problems may not be hormonal.
One endo was willing to suggest a dopamine agonist once I finish post cycle from trt but I’m a tad skeptical about it being dopamine and it seritonin related.

I started to look into thyroid especially hypothyroidism or at least proms relating to such.

I haven’t had a full comprehensive thyroid panel yet nor have I had it tested very much throughout the months of trying to recover, but one thing I’ve noticed is before trt I tested for low t3 and even during my t3 was low.

My Thyroid panel on 02/06/2018:
TSH 1.763 (0.400-4.000)
Free T4 1.3 (0.8-1.6)
T4 5.6 (4.5-12.0)
TT3 0.7 (0.8-1.6) L
T3 Uptake 35.4 (22.0-35.0)
FT3 2.63 (2.30-4.20)

Less comprehensive but Thyroid panel on 06/11/2018
TSH 1.55 (0.40-4.50 mIU/L)
T4,FREE 1.5 (0.8-1.8 ng/dL)
T3,TOTAL 60 (76-181 ng/dL) L

T3 has been consistently on the lower end.

My tsh and t4 are within range and when I talked to one of my endos yesterday she said my thyroid came back “okay”

I know that okay and optimal can be 2 different things.

Is it possible that I should be looking into more thyroid issues or is the low t3 not much of an issue?

I’ll do the dopamine agonist if I have to, I’ll make sure to be extremely judicious, however my gut tells me my issue has to be more hormone related than not.

What could be the issue? I currently am taking hcg in preparation for pct from TRT this monday but I’m not expecting any miracles.

Where do i go from here? I think my endo drew more blood earlier this week to check if thyroid and or cortisol could be a concern, but if they aren’t ill be stumped.

My next move would be to finish PCT and then wait an additional 4-6 weeks for bloodwork. That’ll land me in September, a full year of trying to recover.

Any and all advice is appreciated, thank you!

Your thyroid is not alright, you must understand doctors will not treat you if you fall in these reference ranges because insurance companies will not cover you unless you fall below these ranges, this doesn’t mean that your thyroid is ok, it means insurance will not pay for treatment.

If your doctor was being honest he would tell you your thyroid hormone are low but insurance won’t pay for treatment until you dip below ranges. It’s called reference range endocrinology and it turns doctors into number chasing robots. Years ago before all these fancy labs test doctors treated the patients symptoms, not they treat numbers on a piece of paper.

The reason why TRT plateaued after 2-3 weeks is two reasons, thyroid couldn’t keep up and it takes 2-3 weeks for pituitary gland to shutdown do to exogenous testosterone being detected by the pituitary. Men must wait several weeks before your body starts to adapt to the exogenous testosterone, some refer to it as the honeymoon phase.

I’m sorry your doctor believes thyroid hormones at the bottom of the ranges is okay, I don’t know about you but I would prefer them at the other end of the range. Find another doctor or if doctors are unsympathetic paying out of pocket is the only option.

You may have a problem converting T4 to T3 and fT3 is your most important test. It is close to the bottom, yet your brain thinks you are fine as TSH is not high. You should see if you can get reverse T3 checked. Your fT4 is not bad, some of it may be converting to rT3, which will block your fT3 from the receptor site so what you have won’t work. Probably be a good idea to check thyroid antibodies in case there is an auto immune condition behind this. Good luck.

Firstly thank you for your response.
Secondly thank you for giving me some hope!

I won’t bog you down with my life struggles but at the very least ill say that quality of life has been less than ideal.

I really thought i was losing my mind, I’ve tried and gotten the most common outliers like estrogen, testosterone, etc within ranges yet nothing seemed to changed.

I didn’t really consider thyroid until after trt didn’t work but now that i am, its really odd that these endos are glossing over the low t3 and dismissing it as a possible cause.

If you could, may you please help me construct a case to bring to my endo in order to convince her that she should be taking my thyroid more seriously?


I’m not very astute when it comes to the thyroid, so your explanation about fT3 and rT3, etc are a bit esoteric to me.

However id like to thank you also for giving me some hope!

I dont know to what extent my thyroid could be compromised but it also seemed odd that doctors would just glance over the T3 as a non factor.

anyways thank you for your imput, hopefully i can make progress from here!

Chalk it up to not all doctors are good doctors, show your labs to 10 different doctors and some would see a problem while others wouldn’t. These doctors are trained to believe in ranges is normal and healthy. This is wrong.

Do you get, AM/PM woods? Night erections.

No not at all.

No night time nor morning wood.
Feel fatigue, definitely need caffeine to get through the day.
Low libido and sexual desire.
Numb and rubbery feeling penis
Takes heavy stimulation to get an erection plus when I do get a full erection, it still feels numb.
Less than exciting orgasms
Anxiety, especially socially. Regardless of how much exposure therapy I try, it doesn’t get too much better.

A few of my symptoms that I’m currwntly dealing with.

I did try cabergoline at 3 dosages at .25mg every 3rd day. I did feel a spike in libido and I was able to get an erection without stimulation, but unfortunately my erection still felt numb. No changes in ejaculatoty enjoyment either. That tells me this is still more so hormonal.

Thyroid is the only thing left, hopefully I’m right.


Another thing that jumped out to me was your SHBG… 8? How did you get it that low? That’s REALLY.

Low SHBG is thyroid related or linked to low Free T3, thyroid treatment will raise SHBG. If your doctor can’t even diagnose you properly I fail to see how he can offer a proper treatment plan.

I think it’s because I added masteron to my trt for a week.

Plus I’ve done a month of proviron on 2 separate occasions. It didn’t do much, probably because it wasn’t addressing the real issue.

My Free T and DHT levels have been high along with Test (high normal)

My SHBG has been high usually when I tested it. This is the first time I’ve actually had it this low.

Thyroid has to be my only logical step from here I presume?

I can’t think of another hormone related issue that would be the cause of my dysfunction, especially since all other areas have been normal at one point or another.

High , as in?.. 10? lol 20? hahah

What have your testosterone levels been like in the last 2 years since the AAS cycle?

Please post up:

Free testosterone
Total testosterone

If your testosterone bloodwork is ok, don’t rule out neurotransmitters - they control so many aspects of how you feel.

In fact even if testosterone bloodwork shows a problem, neurotransmitters are important. None of the body or brain operates in isolation. It’s all holistic.

Lately I’ve been reading about using nutrients, mainly amino acids to improve neurotransmitter deficiencies - I don’t think drugs are the only solution to neuro issues.

It sounds like you’ve been messing around with stuff, trying to fix this for a long time.

Have you been stable, on TRT for 6 months. WITHOUT messing with your e2 or other stuff?

Maybe you just need some consistency, for longer than a few months.

From my 02/06 blood work my SHBG tested 47.26 (19.30-76.40). It’s actually something ive been trying to lower throughout the months and now it’s too low. Regardless with the high SHBG and low SHBG I still had low t3.

I’ll make sure to put more of an emphasis on thyroid for my upcoming appointment(s). I’m truly praying that my thyroid is and has always been the problem, I would have no idea where to go from there if it’s not the case.

You need consistency. It sounds like you have been putting your body through so many changed.

We need consistency. Our bodies LOVE homeostasis. Why don’t you settle on a TRT protocol, give it 7+ months of CONSISTENCY. Let your SHBG go to where it naturally should be.

Thyroid hormones require cortisol and ferritin, all valid tests if thyroid issues suspected.

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I hear you bud.

However i know testosterone isn’t the problem to begin with, especially now.

My last 2 cycles in 2015 consisted of 2 12 week cycles of 500mg. I never needed an AI so it was purely testosterone. I felt the testosterone kick in during the normal 4-6 week period. i would simply look at a mildly attractive woman and get an erection.

this time around i did testosterone and my levels skyrocketed! I was already around the high 700s with a 200-800 scales and around 1200 with 1500 scale and that was natural. When i did testosterone again this time around, i had a light honeymoon phase but i plateaued quickly and didnt receive much benefit outside of a little more energy.

Plus my body was not handling the extra testosterone well. Even at 100mg per week my test shoot up 1600-1800 and my liver and kidney function were starting to decline.

But you’re definitely right about homeostasis. The problem is even when i had my levels in homeostasis sans thyroid test, i didn’t feel much different.

TRT fortunately and unfortunately isn’t the answer. I dont have to be on shots for the rest of my life, but now i got to find the true cause.

Thats why i’m hoping its thyroid.

On 02/06 Cortisol tested 12.4 (6.4-21.0)

On 06/11 in the am my cortisol tested 16.6 (4.0-22.0 mcg/dL)

its looking decent to say the least. i haven’t had ferritin tested unless its under an acronym i don’t recognize.

Is it possible I could have thyroid issues that are minor or at least enough to be causing my symptoms. Someone on a scale of 200-800 could have testosterone that is 260, they’re within range but for them it could be very low and bringing about low T symptoms.

Could that be a similar case to my t3? I may not have full blown hypothyroidism thats obvious, but is it possible that its under active to a point where its causing a few of my symptoms?

What? How? This only happens with people that have High SHBG. Yours was 8?

Your messing with proviron, which is liver toxic, if I remember right.

Honestly, I wish you the best man. I think your over-doing and over thinking it though. You need to listen to your doctors. Listen to your body. Be consistent and so you can figure out some of the variables.

If you think its your thyroid, get everything else into good ranges, then see how you feel. Then Get your thyroid taken care of next.