T Nation

DHT: How Can I Get It Higher?


Background: I'm 32, 6'2", 200lbs, been on TRT for 2.5 years. Most recent blood level had TT at 720ng/dl and E2 at 14 with 1mg/week of Adex. That's with 120mg/week of T-cyp.

When I first started treatment in 2012, my doc put me on a trial of Androgel. I experienced an immediate and potent boost in mood: I was far happier than I had been in years, felt amazing in the gym, etc. However, the ED that motivated me to get checked out in the first place did not resolve itself, and the Androgel did not raise my TT enough (only got to mid-300s, up from low 200s). Ultimately I've been on EOD shots for 2 years. Even though the ED and other issues have resolved, that positive mood boost has not returned. It disappeared after going on shots.

I've recently been reading about the role that DHT plays in mood/overall sense of well-being, and I've been thinking about whether the Androgel raised my DHT and whether that was why my mood was so great.

Since Androgel is absurdly expensive (and my insurance won't cover both my shots and that), I've been considering using Masteron, as a DHT derivative, to see if I can recapture some of that positive feeling. Has anyone here had experience with Masteron + Test? What other options do I have for regaining some of the mental benefits of that early treatment while still keeping the other benefits? Are there options besides Masteron I should consider?



Where to start? Read the stickies!

  • advice for new guys
  • protocol for injections
  • thyroid basics

Post your labs. Did you have LH/FSH tested before starting TRT
Poor absorption of transdermal T can be a symptom of thyroid problems, read the above sticky, check body temperatures and eval your long term iodine intake.

TRT has shut down your testes. 250iu hCG SC EOD will fix that and many then also report an improvement in mood. Mood problems can also be from too much E2 [estradiol] and/or thyroid issues.

DHT and mood. We have never had that as an issue here.


I will follow up on the thyroid stuff and iodine.

Yes, I had LH and FSH tested before going on TRT. Here are my labs (in attached images), going from November 2011 to April 2012, which is when I did my first full workup and got on TRT. Only one of these is from when I was on Androgel, and I had only been on for 1 month when it was drawn. Does anything stand out to you?


Part 2: thyroid numbers

I went back and read the entire thyroid sticky here. I looked at my old thyroid lab data from 2012 and plugged it into the spreadsheet downloaded from here: http://www.drrind.com/therapies/thyroid-scale#interpreting

The attached image shows the results. According to his interpretation matrix, my values (granted, quite old) show a pattern consistent with subclinical hypothyroidism. Here’s his text:

I’m going to start taking morning temps, but since I don’t eat ANY iodized salt and don’t eat kelp or other high-iodine foots, I suspect I may be iodine deficient. I may just pick up some iodine supplements and try IR to see what happens.

Thoughts, KSMan?


TSH=1.46 optimal? Should be closer to 1.0

Start injecting T twice a week and take anastrozole at the same time

E2=14, should be near 22. You could reduce anastrozole by a factor of 14/22

But perhaps your labs are a bit bogus from infrequent injections. Do labs 1/2 way between injections - always. You don’t want changes to be from timing artifacts.


I currently do EOD injections, sub-q. Do you recommend switching?


Your T dosing is fine. You do need a liquid anastrozole product. You can do RC or make your own with vodka.


Thanks so much for all your help. I really appreciate it.

Interesting about the vodka route. I’m assuming I take the remaining number of pills, measure the volume of vodka very precisely, and therefore determine the concentration per ml of anastrozole in the dissolved solution? Is there any risk to using more vodka to get a larger total volume of the product so measurement is easier?

I’ve got some Lugol’s iodine coming in the mail from Amazon. After reading your thread I’m confident I don’t get enough iodine in my diet, so even if I don’t have to do a full IR protocol, supplementing probably is a good idea for thyroid support, no?

In terms of determing why I’m not feeling fantastic with my levels, does it seem like the current issue is most likely E2 being too low (looks like it’s at about 63% of the level you outlined)?


I didn’t have time to read through the other responses but the what you’re chasing is the initial dopamine blast from drastically increasing free T when you started Androgel. It’s common and not sustainable. Usually it’s really strong for about 5 days and then diminishes to zip in 10 days.

Masteron or Proviron aren’t going to help. The only thing I’m aware of that will help is Ketamine. Ketamine clinics are popping up in every city because it’s very effective. Your other option is to wait for the nasal spray or orals that are years down the road.


That’s a really interesting and very specific response-- thank you. I’ll do some digging on how to raise dopamine levels. The ketamine thing is pretty interesting. I’ve read about a lot of the positive effects of ketamine in terms of PTSD and other issues. Do you have any resources you could send me via PM about what ketamine protocol you’d recommend to recapture that dopamine blast?


You could try bupropion. It’s much different than most antidepressants in that it doesn’t touch serotonin. It’s a norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitor, and increased libido is common. Otherwise you could try something like cabergoline just to see how you respond; I don’t think it’s a long-term option.

Drugs like cabergoline can trigger dopamine agonist withdrawal syndrome (DAWS) if used too much, and from what I’ve read you want to stay way the hell away from that. Bupropion is a good long-term option if it works for you.