T Nation

Hormone Replacement for Younger Men?


First off I'm 18 years old & have been weightlifting consistently 5 days a week for over a year now. During this time I've been highly dedicated never missing a workout & eating very healthy.

I have a typical muscle building diet including lots of lean protein, fruit, veggies, water & supplements such as fish oil, multivitamins & whey protein. But despite all this I have been disappointed in muscle gain & fat loss given my efforts. On top of that I've suffered an ongoing lack energy & general feeling of weakness throughout my body.

One day it occurred to me that low testosterone could be the problem, so after looking up the symptoms online & finding matches for quite a few I booked a doctors appointment to get blood work done. The doctor ran a test for total testosterone, thyroid function & a long list of other potential causes.

The results:

Total Testosterone: 15.7 nmol/L (10.0-35.0)

Thyroid Function: 2.70 mIU/L (0.27-4.20)

Obviously both are within the normal range particularly the thyroid function but it's frustrating to see that my T levels are at the lower end of the spectrum when I'm doing everything I can to boost them to their highest natural levels. I also discussed possible DHEA & growth hormone problems with the doctor but he rejected that idea fairly quickly. With my workouts I'm getting a feeling of what's the point since I'm seeing little improvement physically & battling constant fatigue.

So since there seems to be some fairly informed people posting here what do you guys make of my results & do I have any realistic chance of getting treatment from a doctor if my symptoms continue?


Maybe your body needs a rest. T levels can vary quite a bit over the course of a day, and can be influenced by cortisol levels. If you train intensley week after week and never take a break, your cortisol levels could be elevated.


Your T levels are definitely lower than normal for someone your age...however that doesn't mean you should be getting TRT because you most likely don't need it.

What symptoms of low-t do you have? Describe your body type hairy/fat/etc.


First off, you are probably unhappy with your "fat loss & muscle gain problem" because you can't do both at one time with any noticeable gain (once you get past beginner gains). You need to focus on either fat loss or muscle gain, and pursue them as separate goals one at a time.

Secondly, we would need way more than total T and TSH to recommend any real solution.

TSH approaching 3 is a problem but it's impossible to say what the cause is without Free T3, Free T4, and cortisol tests at the bare minimum. (TSH range is useless - optimal is usually 1-1.5, the range is high because so many people test high, but that doesn't mean high values are healthy).

Your doc was right to not entertain DHEA - if you haven't had it tested how do you know it's low? I have DHEA in the middle of the range, total T in the middle, and very low free T. The point is you don't which link is broken till you check the whole chain.


I should also mention I was tested the correct time in the morning just to clarify. My other symptoms include poor concentration & motivation, abdominal fat, dry hair, dry skin, excessive sweating & occasional hot flashes.

I wish I had more in depth results to give about free test & free t3 & 4 levels but total T & TSH were all he ran hormone wise.


I understand, but figuring out your problem on those 2 tests is like swatting a fly in the dark. I don't think anyone here, or any doc, would feel comfortable recommending any sort of treatment based on that.


So i've switched to a new doctor & had additional tests done as you will see below.

Total Testosterone: 25.3 nmol/L (8.3-30.2)
Sex Hormone Binding Globulin: 30 nmol/L (13-71)
Calculated Free Testosterone: 600 pmol/L (225-725)

FSH 6 IU/L (1-10)
LH 5 IU/L (1-10)

Serum Prolactin: 524 mIU/L (45-375)

Free Thyroxine: 16.9 pmol/L (10-19)
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone: 4.28 mIU/L (0.50-4.00)

I've been diagnosed with mild hyperthyroidism. My doctors put me on 50mg of a medication called eutroxsig a day.

I'm suprised to see my testosterone is well up from last time.

My prolactin levels are sky high also.


Did you have sex or masturbate within 12 hours or so of the test? Prolactin is definitely too high if not. Check out getting an MRI of your pituitary to rule out an andenoma and if nothing is there, look into caber...

Have you done anything to improve your test so drastically?


Yeah it was within 12 hours, i'll get it tested again just to be sure.

The two changes i've made that stick out for me regarding my testosterone rise are doing 300+ body weight squats everyday instead of only once a week when I'm training legs.

Also I've been having cold showers after hearing they boost T.


The medication ive been prescribed is a thyroxine sodium. I'm confused about the rational behind this since I have an over active thyroid & it is used for deficency. Isn't this counter productive? Can anyone explain?



You said above that you are hypo, not hyper.


My mistake. Fixed.


Higher TSH numbers lean towards Hypo.
Lower TSH numbers lean towards Hyper.

You have been given the correct medication for your higher tsh levels.


Latest test results:

Free T4: 18.0 pmol/L (10.-19.0)
TSH: 1.44 mIU/L (0.50-4.00)
Free T3: 5.9 pmol/L (3.5-6.5)

I don't feel any change in my symptoms so far. How long can the process take at most?


a month or so to feel the effects.

makes me wonder what your Reverse T3 and 8am cortisol levels look like.

what is your waking body temp, and 9am, 12, and 3pm temperature readings?


Not sure about my body temperature, i'll get my reverse T3 & cortisol levels checked in the next few days.


Is it also possible for my hypothyroidism to inhibit the testosterone my body is using even if levels are high? I thought it might after the big leap my total testosterone took in 3 months yet I felt no change whatsoever.


Latest test results:

Total Testosterone: 24.1 nmol/L (8.3-30.2)
Free Testosterone: 587 pmol/L (225-725)
Sex Hormone Binding Globulin: 28 nmol/L (13-71)
Cortisol: 667nmol/L (119-618)

My doctors dopey as hell, when I asked for the Free T3 & the Reverse T3 levels to be printed he first ignored me then when I asked a second & third time he just gave me a blank stare.

He didn't at all care about the high cortisol levels then made out that they had nothing to do with your thyroid. Told me to come back in 6 months.

Anyone got advice on what to do next besides finding a new doc? High cortisol points toward adrenal exhaustion correct?


Where are the new prolactin numbers?


no high cortisol points to high system stress. if it continues, it could very well lead to adrenal problems.