T Nation

22 Year Old with Low T

First of all I’d like to say I’m glad this forum exists because I wasn’t sure where to go looking for advice. I just turned 22 and I’d just like to provide a background. I went through puberty pretty early, at 11 or 12 years old and eventually grew to be 6’3’’ by the time I was 17. I also have full facial fair and a ton of body hair. To make matters more interesting I developed gynecomastia either during or slightly before puberty (hard to remember). I have a skinny fat type of frame right now. I got a blood test at 19 years old and my T was low but just above the cutoff for what is considered normal but recently I got another test and I was at 193 which is super low for any age. My sexual interest etc is all good.

Should I go on TRT?

Did you order the labs yourself or through the care of a doctor?

At your age I would try to find a progressive doctor that will acknowledge your T is very low for your age.

I don’t think you should go on TRT right away, I would work with a doc to find out what is causing your T to be so bad in the first place. There are several medical possibilities you need to rule out first.

You should also get comprehensive labs done. At least get the following.

Metabolic Panel
Free T
Total T
Estradiol, sensitive

Most guys on here have low T due to age combined with environmental factors, stress, injury, or steroid abuse; And most wouldn’t hesitate to recommend TRT for them. But guys in their early 20s with T below 200 likely have something else going on that needs to get ruled out first.

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If T is low and you have no symptoms, then you don’t have low-T, you just have low numbers which isn’t unheard of to see guys with low numbers and no symptoms, it just means you are sensitive to testosterone.

Going on TRT in the absence of symptoms is not advised, TRT might create a hormone imbalance which could see a gyno flare up if you didn’t have the glands removed. Gyno is usually caused by an imbalance of testosterone, estrogen, DHT and prolactin.

He said he had gyno, which as you said, is a symptom of a hormone imbalance. But then you state he has “an absence of symptoms”. This is contradictory.

He really needs to find out why his T is so low, symptoms or not, his T is not normal and left unchecked may do a lot of harm down the road.

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He said he had gyno, as in past tense, so far in the past he can’t remember when it occurred. He said he has low-T numbers and sex drive is all good. This to me tells me his numbers are low but has no symptoms as of now.

You’re suggesting he try to fix something that isn’t broke all because you predict he will have a problem in the future?

I’m sorry but I don’t agree, but it wouldn’t be a bad idea to get baseline numbers now so he can compare levels later in life in the event he does encounter problems.

So you’re saying the only symptoms of low T are Libido and gyno?

How can you say with any certainty he’s trying to “fix something that isn’t broke at all”. That’s like telling someone with a very high TSH that they don’t need to investigate at all if they aren’t obese.

He had gyno, either now or in the past. That sure as hell means something is not right.

We don’t have a full picture. He needs more labs, or maybe he has them and needs to share them. But to say he is fine bases solely on his libido, despite a very low total T and gyno (past or present) is irresponsible.

He needs labs, and he needs to investigate why his numbers are low.

It means he’s genetically predisposed to gyno whether natural or on TRT. He has mentioned "no symptoms", his libido is all good, he has full facial and body hair. I don’t know about you but I interpret this as no symptoms and he is only concerned about the low numbers.

I said it wouldn’t be a bad idea to get more baseline numbers, everyone should even if they are no problems so he has an idea of what normal is for him should in the event he start having hormonal problems in the future.

I don’t think you are reading my posts.

By myself, bc I recognized some of the symptoms.

Iv seen alot of guys on these kind of forums(reddit, bodybuilding, t-nation), in their 20s, with low T, due to nothing other then bad genetics.

Hypogonadism has no age requirement.

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In my case, going on TRT would help me alot tho. First of all, my body is dogshit, im not fat, but im skinnyfat with scary little musclemass and too much bodyfat, and yes I have worked out. Second, my mood is going up and down, with some depression in the picture too. If TRT is the answer, I dont have any problems with going on it the rest of my life.

The fact that im not able to put on any musclemass, and that my bodyfat % aint going down, is alone the reason why I want to go on TRT. Im so miserable, and its worse when working out isnt working because ur T is shit.

Hypogonadism has no age requirement.

Sure. I have too, but it’s a smaller population on the forums than the types of guys I mentioned. All I’m saying is that is you should rule out any treatable causes of low T before starting TRT. If you can’t find a cause, have tried lifestyle changes, and you are experiencing symptoms of low T with low labs, then by all means give it a try.

This newer post is a departure from your earlier ones, your earlier posts mentioned no symptoms, now it seems there are and I had a lack of information and prefer not to make assumptions. The ability to put on muscle is genetics, sure testosterone helps, but not everyone can pack on tons of muscle and easily lose body fat.

You say your libido is good, this is usually something that is low or nonexistent in most of those who truly have low testosterone. Maybe I’m reading between the lines, I’m seeing a lack of muscle mass, depression which has many causes and less than ideal body fat percentage as symptoms.

You asked should you go on TRT, I say dig a little deeper, please investigate and post the results before making any decisions. Last night I have also read about others who had gone through puberty too early (age 3) and regardless of sex, these people often hit menopause/andropause very early in life.

I would also test for IGF-1 which represents growth hormone levels and cortisol in addition to what galgenstrick recommended.

Never really affected my libido either.

Same here. I never complained about my libido, but had just about every other symptom. I think morning erections are a better indicator of low T than libido.

Are you on trt? How has it changed ur life?

For sure, morning wood was definitely gone for me as well. I had pretty much all the symptoms but never had trouble with libido

May I ask how you did come into trt? And how are u feeling now?

I first got my T checked because of memory and brain fog issues. Probably when I was 25 or so. It came back in the 500s I think, and doc told me I was fine.

Around when I was 28 I was able to reduce a lot of stress in my life but symptoms didn’t improve, so I changed my diet and started weightlifting very seriously. That lasted for 3 years. In those 3 years I gained maybe only 5lbs of muscle. I was constantly working on form and getting a lot of advice on the forums. I was lean bulking several months at a time and then cutting and I should have had more to show for it.

After that I got my T checked and it came back in the 300s.

So I thought maybe I was overtraining. I started “Starting Strength” and saw a certified SS coach. I did everything he told me. I gained probably 30-40lbs over a year and again only 5lbs of muscle. That was 4 years of lifting and I still couldn’t squat over 200lbs.

I got really depressed, my motivation died, my memory still sucked, over those years I also got really irritable and suicidal. Not just because of my lack of progress BTW, life just became overwhelming in general.

I got my T checked again and it was again in low 300s. So I decided to quit weightlifting, and go back to my old lifestyle where my T was in the 500s. I did that for about a year and my T got up to mid 400s. But I still felt like hell.

So I started TRT at that point.

I will say that I obviously tested more than TT all those times, my FT was also in the can.

I’ve been on TRT for half a year now, and am slowly seeing lots of improvements. I still don’t weight lift but I’m already more muscular that I was when weightlifting. My energy has gone up, and brain fog has disappeared.

I don’t yet have the energy or motivation to start lifting again though. I am too afraid I will not make progress and spin my gears again. I don’t want to get into that funk.

In other words, TRT bascially saved your life. Better energy, gains and motivation to live.