T Nation

Have to Quit TRT Because of Skin eczema

Hi guys, I feel so crappy right now.

I mean I have been suffering from low T ever since. My natural levels are too low, this is a fact. And I also look crappy and feel crappy.
I had such high hopes in TRT.

And now it’s pretty much over.
I mean I simply cannot go on.
I have been on T gel since October and because the gel didn’t raise my levels high enough I had to increase the dose continually and since then my eczema (seb eczema/dermatitis) has gotten so much worse and this is no coincidence. Androgens make the seb eczema worse I even read this in medical literature!

I have been having this eczema for many years now and it was more or less “stable”. This means I have a few spots in the face which flame up every now and then and then start to scale and so forth.
Basically the more active spots you have the harder it is to control the eczema. I had days where I simply couldn’t get the inflammation down not even with strong cortisone in order to go outside.
And since I started with TRT I have gotten SO many new active spots in my face it’s awful!
Not only is the eczema more active and flames up more often but my I have so many red spots in my face that I really cannot even go out anymore on days where it is active!!!

Before I could still go out and try to cover those 2-3 active spots but now the spots are so many that this isn’t possible.
And why should it stop here? I assume that if I stayed on TRT I’d get more and more active spots.

And I think that the gel is still much milder than injections when it comes to increasing sebum production in the skin.

Injections should provide less aromatase (T to E conversion) and less DHT (strong androgen) conversion. If you do them right, levels will be stable enough. Probably as stable as natural production and levels, which can be influenced by a dozen different things.

Read the stickies and try and find a doc that put you on a reasonable program after comprehensive testing. Successful TRT is more that just putting on some gel and feeling better. It needs to be tweaked. You’re trying to balance a lot of different hormones. Did you really think that was going to be as easy as rubbing on some gel?

Have you read this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seborrhoeic_dermatitis ?
Note nutrient factors.
Get some EFA’s in your diet. Fish oil, nuts, flax seed meal or oil.
Vit-D3 5000iu/day

The skin irritation from the gel may be the problem, not the T. Otherwise castration would be a cure.

Yes, you need to self inject T. Read the ‘advice for new guys sticky’ and the ‘protocol for injections’.

If you have other issues that affect skin and general health, those need to be addressed. Read ‘thyroid basics’. Thyroid conditions can affect skin health.

Post your lab work. Post more info about you.

I am already taking D3 and fish oil daily and have been so for years! This doesn’t help with the eczema at all.

But with the seb eczema it is simply that androgens raise sebum production and this makes the eczema worse!
The gel itself has nothing to do with it. I apply the gel to my arms and stomach and I have the eczema in the face there is no contact!
It’s the testosterone which makes it worse.

I don’t see how you could “balance” anything out there. If I raise my T through TRT then the eczema gets worse. I also read this in an article which said that hypogonodal men who never had normal levels will experience this eczema more often.

The connection is clear. Since I went on the gel the eczema has been getting worse a lot. I wish it wasn’t so.

You T is still really low. That’s not causing symptoms. Maybe the DHT that it’s converting to if androgens really do make it worse. DHT is more androgenic than T. You will get a lot less conversion to DHT with injections.

You should probably look at thyroid and adrenals (unless this test was in the late evening). DHEA-S could be better as well. Get some 50mg DHEA from lef.

Adrenals - Adrenal insufficiency sucks. I felt like absolute hell when my cortisol levels were really low. Get 4x saliva test from canary club. Cortisol seems to track with ACTH, so probably a signaling issue. Read this for suggestions:

I had some luck with Pregnenolone cream, DHEA, tyrosine, Ginseng (ashwaganda worked as well), astragalus and huperzine A. No apparent adrenal issues since TRT. Kept the DHEA and Preg. Still take ginseng because I have a bunch of it.

Thyroid - I think you want TPO antibodies to be 0. May have hashimotos, which would explain your levels moving around. Thyroid issues might also explain your shitty results from the T gel.

I also worry about the low ACTH and cortisol. This test was done in the morning!

I just read the adrenal fatigue article. This is really complicated
stuff. How’d you even know if you can combine herbs with prescription

You can’t count on a doc to help you with all this. You need to take responsibility for your own health and start reading.

I had been on and off ADs for years. A couple of them did more harm than good. Lexapro killed T levels and libido. Effexor was absolutely toxic and a real pain to get off. Proxac was a waste other than weight loss. Welbutrin (sp?) was the only one that I didn’t get any sides from and worked ok without continually upping the dose. I will never touch another AD again. To may sides and most mess with with too many important functions in the body.

I got off of all ADs and started looking at low T, thyroid and adrenal insufficiency. I also did neurotransmitter testing to see exactly where I was at. Why on earth would docs not do this before suggesting a AD? If you do it through neuroscience, they’ll also recommend supplements to correct any abnormalities. It’s also pretty easy to find info on raising particular neurotransmitters via supplementation.

You keep assuming it’s the T that’s giving you issues when it’s still really low. This makes no sense. Your DHT is much higher in the range than your T, and DHT is more androgenic than T. If you believe androgens are making things worse, this is where you need to look. Gels will raise DHT much more than injections.

so you think that DHT makes the eczema worse and not testo itself?
Or could they both make it worse and in my case it’s the DHT which was elevated due to the gel?
The thing is, this eczema is VERY serious especially because of my depression. It’s nothing
to be taken lightly. Maybe some people think such an eczema is no big deal but it is especially
when it’s in the face and when you see that it’s spreading. This creates an awful fear in me.

I wish I knew what to do. I feel like maybe this is a sign to leave my hands off TRT and stop
it before I create even more damage.

What if for example I start losing hair on TRT? Finasterid and minoxidil are both dangerous
from what I read so this means there is nothing you can do against hairloss and this would
also be a totally depressing side effect.

As for measuring neurotransmitters,
what did you do? Did they check them in the blood or urine?
I read that you cannot really measure what’s going on in the brain. So I don’t know if there
are really reliable tests which tell you how it looks like in the brain. But I’m really pissed
off that doctors simply prescribe ADs but never do any labs.

And did you treat your thyroid and adrenals under the “supervision of a doctor” or on your
own through supplements?

[quote]wwally wrote:
so you think that DHT makes the eczema worse and not testo itself? Or could they both make it worse and in my case it’s the DHT which was elevated due to the gel?
I don’t know anything about eczema. You said severity could be androgen related. DHT is more androgenic than T. You have very low T and DHT in the upper part of the range. Seems pretty simple.

Well then go ahead and do that. A sign? Really? Your defeatist attitude has me convinced you definitely need more T. Be a man and take care of yourself.

Worry about it if it happens. Much less likely on a sensible on a proper program that includes injections. Again, less DHT with injections.

Urine. No, you can’t really see what’s going on the brain. You can see what the body is excreting though. Same with blood work for many things you test. You can’t see what’s actually going on in organs or tissues. There is no smoking gun but there are tests that can provide us data points to work from. It’s certainly better that just trying something, getting a ‘sign’ that it’s not working, quitting and never really understanding what it is really doing and how to adjust.

And did you treat your thyroid and adrenals under the “supervision of a doctor” or on your
own through supplements?[/quote]
Adrenals on my own with supplements. Improvements verified by testing and significant symptom improvements. Not really doing anything for adrenals now. TRT has taken care of that. I was an absolute mess before TRT. I was on the very edge of disaster in about every part of my life. It’s been absolutely life changing. Saved my carrier, marriage and relationship with my kids. There is no part of my life that’s not better, and I’m not even done tweaking my program for optimal results.

Not doing anything for thyroid at the moment, other than iodine. Doc thinks I have hashis, but we are going to wait until TRT is stable (it take quite a bit of tweaking) before we address any thyroid issues. I would say my thyroid issues are mild at the moment, so not too concerned with holding off. Much easier to deal with one thing at a time.

WW: Do not dismiss the fact that spreading alcohol or the other inactive ingredients over large amounts of skin could create systemic effects that could affect skin elsewhere.

Thyroid: TSH jumping around. Read ‘thyroid basics’. What is your iodine intake. Did you introduce vitamins with iodine or start using iodized salt between the two sets of labs? Check body temperatures.

Yes, DHT can be a major factor. Transdermal is worse for that and injected the least.

Injections can deliver very steady T levels. Read the protocol for injections sticky. With frequent injections and multiple small injection deposits with overlapping release curves, you will get steady levels.

Transdermal T creates very large short acting peaks in T.

TSH jumping around could be hashimoto.

Check TPO and TGAB.

@ dhickey

My concern with those labs which offer these extraordinary tests is that
they only want to make money and tell the people they lack neurotransmitters
and now they have to buy all their special supplements. What if they only rip
people off with their stuff?

@ Ksman

Not between those 2 labs I did NOT take iodine salt. I have been using iodine
salt for the past few weeks now. But isn’t iodine bad for people who have hashimoto?

Recently I was feeling cold during the day and my feet were cold and I measured temperature
and I had 36.9 celsius which seems pretty normal to me. How often should one measure temp?

The problem is that I don’t think that my doc will agree self-injections.

@ Tunapancake

I had TPO and TR-antibodies done. And the ultrasound was also normal.
Not sure what else I could do.

TPO-AB 10.5 Norm: 0 - 35 U/ml
TR-AB 0.31 Norm: 0 - 16 IU/l

I really don’t know what to do. I have been off the gel for 4 days now. I am
sick of this shit. I also cannot say that I feel worse than before lol.
No matter if on or off the gel I feel as crappy all the time.

[quote]wwally wrote:
@ dhickey

My concern with those labs which offer these extraordinary tests is that
they only want to make money and tell the people they lack neurotransmitters
and now they have to buy all their special supplements. What if they only rip
people off with their stuff?
then don’t do it. Keep doing what your doing if it’s working so well. I’d rather get some testing done than continually pump myself full of toxic ADs without knowing what they do or if I even need them.

You don’t think you’re getting ripped off now? Paying for meds and doctor visits while still suffering?

Be a man and take initiative in their health friend. Have the doctor to hell. If I were you arrange testosterone cypionate and inject SubQ each day.

[quote]wwally wrote:
By the way, my doc told me that at our next appointment he wants to start
and give me my first 250mg injection. What do I say? Shall I say no I don’t
want that or what do I do?

But then what if he says that other than that he can only offer me nebido?
Nebido will have a smoother curve but this stuff lasts 3 months. If I then
should get too big side effects then I cannot just get off it.

I really don’t know what to do. I have been off the gel for 4 days now. I am
sick of this shit. I also cannot say that I feel worse than before lol.
No matter if on or off the gel I feel as crappy all the time.[/quote]

Firstly gird yourself like a man. You are alive and have it better than someone without arms or legs or cancer.

Listen to KSman and follow his advice. The vast majority of doctors are not on androgel or any TRT and have little knowledge on the subject so read as much as you can here.

hi guys, the big problem is
I’m not in the US where you just walk into a TRT clinic and
then get all meds and injections you need!
I cannot even get AIs without the help of a doctor!

Do you all doctor yourself and just inject stuff on your own or how do you do this?

And is being off the testosterone now unhealthy?
I really don’t see any sense in going on with the gel now.

At the moment I cannot do anything cause getting 250mg every 3 weeks
also is no solution.

Or should I go for 250mg until I know what to do else?

Well, you can either try and convince your doctor to put you on a sensable testing and treatment plan, or try and find a new doc. This challenge exists here. I when through 4 docs over a few years before finding someone capable and willing to help me.

You could see if it’s easier to get them to treat adrenal or thyroid issues. You’re just going to have to take some initiative. Read a ton and feel available doctors out. Find one that’s willing to treat any of these areas in a sensible way and you’ll probably make progress.

You can also try life changes and supplementation. You seem to be a bit of a mess, so this is going to be a lot more work and require a ton of research. You could start here http://www.lef.org/protocols/index.htm for a ton of info and suggestion on different conditions. Really tough to tell you where to start. I started with digestive health because I figured it was a good foundation for everything else I needed to improve. I then moved on to neurotransmitters and my adrenal insufficiency. This got me off ADs and at least feeling alive again. I may have been able to continue to make progress without TRT, but quite frankly I just needed to feel good again after being a mess for so long. I’m still trying to sort the underlying causes of my neurotransmitter, adrenal, thyroid and endocrine issues. TRT just gives me some breathing room.

If all else fails, you could try some meds that are easier to get yourself. SERM, HCG, AI, T4, T3, HC etc. Not sure what the risk is in your country, but here it’s pretty easy to get these from a research chemical company or overseas pharmacy. Certainly not legal without a prescription, but very little risk of anyone hassling you on such trivial drugs when their busy chasing pain killers and heavier stuff. It’s pretty tough to make a moral argument against doing what it takes to live a healthy happy life.

but how do I even know if I have something with my adrenals? What’s the best test to find
it out once and for all?

Are you saying you’d take SERM, HCG, AI, T4, T3, HC on your own without the supervision of a doctor?
This sounds really dangerous to me. When you take hormones you gotta get labs and see where you are and you can
only get labs when you have a doctor.