T Nation

Any Other Low SHBG and Low Test Guys Here?

Trying to track down whats going on here. Levels are below. 32 year old male, feel awful… exhaustion, ache muscles and joints etc etc. All symptoms of low T. Not currently on TRT now, was last year for a couple years, test levels never increased more than 50 on Androgel. I’m thinking adrenals/thyroid is the current issue as I understand guys with low SHBG and free test TRT does absolutely nothing for them.

My current doc is no help, referred me to endo… 4 month wait for an appointment. I honestly feel 70 years old. Used to lift heavy, maybe I killed my adrenals… never took steriods.

Current bloods:

Test : 203
Free Test: 9.9
prolactin: 8.4
LH 2.9
FSH: 2.8
SHBG: 11.2
Glucose: 99
TSH (FT4/FT3) : 1.36
I don’t like where my glucose levels are, basically pre diabetic he is telling me.

Would getting my SHBG up naturally aid in increasing testosterone? Running out of options here.

Not sure why you would want to raise SHBG and suck up more of your free T.

You are secondary hypogonadism.

Low T has been implicated in being pre-diabetic.

You have lots of options. Consider going on a SERM.

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Stop obsessing over SHBG, i have high SHBG and low fT. SHBG just inflates TT by keeping more testosterone in your blood stream for longer. fT/Bio-T is what matters. You could have high/low SHBG with high/low fT/Bio-T. SHBG serves no purpose other than calculating how much fT/Bio-T is available for the body to use from TT. Manipulating SHBG is not the answer to anything. If fT/Bio-T is low, you will have low T symptoms and you could consider the line of treatment you want to follow. Having said that your blood glucose is high and diabetics have low SHBG and that increases T clearance rates from the body, this is not to say that your T levels will recover but it’s going to be a lot easier to manage TRT if your overall health is good.


Shit i have just realized my free T is 10.1 and my TT is 671… This guy is obviously a candidate for TRT and he has a free t of 9.9, 2 points lower than mine! I have been having trouble with keeping the old fella up if you know what i mean… Could this mean i need to go on TRT?

I have TT of 600 and fT of 6.8 pg/ml. Certainly in the low range and arguably in the clinical hypogonadal range. I’m symptomatic, that’s what determines your course of treatment or lack thereof more than any number really. The expert advice seems to be that fT or bio-T is what gets the job done and by the mechanism of what I have stated above is what causes symptoms. My brother has a TT of 400 but with normal shbg, he has no symptoms at all, gains muscle nice and easy and full of energy. You have young guys coming on forums with levels like these freaking out about how T levels are low. You cannot judge everything by just numbers. High shbg like yours and mine inflate TT measurements, if bio T is low and you are symptomatic, it makes sense to understand what’s the cause for it just like a person with low TT and FT. I have seen guys recently on here and other boards who are symptomatic with higher fT(7-13) with low TT. Your bio T is what matters at the end of the day in my experience. I haven’t started TRT yet, so I cannot say how much it has reduced my symptoms, but I have seen cases like mine and yours that have been helped by recovering T: E ratio.

Awesome man thank you… It seems that everyone with mid-lowish numbers are in a state of limbo, not knowing if they should take the plunge or not. I feel i may be in that category!

Thanks for the responses guys, glad to see I’m not alone.

What protocol are you guys on?

I am yet to start. I am young and evaluating certain measures that need to be taken for fertility as well as making some lifestyle changes and see how my body responds, even though i am in good shape and everything else looks good. Please read the sticky for injections protocol, that should serve you well. You need hCG if you want to prevent testicular atrophy and infertility. It’s worth noting that even hCG is not guaranteed to prevent infertility. So you may need to look deeper into your options as a last resort. You also need an Aromatase inhibitor like anastrozole to control your estradiol. Injections need to be very frequent generally for you to really feel benefits, with your low SHBG i believe that is of the utmost importance if you want to maintain stable T and E levels.

I am fairly new to this and don’t have ins, so I am literally blind and broke… I need a few more tests to be honest as I heard total test fluctuates a lot. All I know is I have been on a roller coaster over the last 6 months and I just want my life back. Libido is low, inability to get an erection without significant stimulation and generally mild depression obviously from the above factors.

In theory if you have low total test, then low SHBG would be a good thing because that means you’re getting for free test than you would otherwise. That was me. My TT was 302, but because I had low SHBG my FT was still slightly within range at 12.0. I started TRT anyway because of the symptoms. I’m on a very high dose at the moment at 210mg/wk of test cyp but will probably adjust down as necessary. Just keeping an eye on my blood pressure and hematocrit for now. I’m also on 2mg of arimidex per week and 2000iu of hCG per week, which everyone on the boards say is excessive, but my doc has assured me it’s not a high dose. The jury is still out. I just started a few weeks ago, and didn’t want to mess with anything until my 8 week followup.

Wow… You’re free T is excellent. Mine is 10.1 and i am not aure if to ask for trt. My T is 671. Just curious what symptoms do yoh have?