T Nation

Hormone Replacement Therapy

Gasp!

I brought it up. Anyone have experience or insight on testosterone replacement therapy.

What’s out there? Gel, patches, pills?

How young is too you to start this?

Well, I’m almost 54 and I haven’t gotten a T patch - yet. However, I feel that my use of 2-3 TRIBEX caps and 1 RED KAT (maybe I should up it)…gives me a bit more endogenous T. I haven’t had my T measured; I feel its OK but will do the TRIBEX/RED KAT or Alpha Male route for now. I think when the dreaded 60 hits, I may go for AndrGel.
I use Arginine as a “poor man’s Viagra”, and it works well in the sex dept. Even at 54, I’m not into T replacement or ED drugs, yet. I’m sure that’ll be necessary but I believe in incremental, natural steps first. I think maybe over 50 or 55 might be the time to start T replacement.

Interesting stuff.

I hadn’t heard about Arginine…

[quote]Atreides wrote:
Gasp!

I brought it up. Anyone have experience or insight on testosterone replacement therapy.

What’s out there? Gel, patches, pills?

How young is too you to start this?[/quote]

I’m 45 years old and was diagnosed with low testosterone levels about four months ago. Symptomatically my libido was low and my body ached systemically. Meaning I have my share of joint problems (two rotator cuff surgeries, and nine minor knee surgeries) but was recovering from workouts very poorly and had a great deal of non-DOMS muscle aches and pains. My blood work indicated a free-testosterone level of 262 with the normal range for someone my age to be 350-859. I elected testosterone injections versus the patch as the patch is extremely inconvenient. After roughly ninety days of injecting 200 mg. of test cypionate once per week, my levels reached 1110 ng/dl which is obviously too high. I am now taking 150 mg./week and will get my levels checked again in a couple of weeks. My doctor and I would like to see my levels in the high normal range, i.e., 750-850 ng/dl. After about 60 days of therapy my libido was noticeably better (much to the chagrin of my pregnant wife) and virtually all unexplained muscle soreness was gone. My strength levels have not materially improved but the quality of my life is much better. Feel free to send me a private e-mail if you’d like.

Just before turning 40, I was diagnosed with hypogonadism over a year ago. This was discovered when my T was tested after I had several bouts of prostitatis.
The T was nonexistent, literally. The GP couldn?t get the therapy worked out so he sent me to a urologist. Went on 10mg of Androgel daily. T was in the 900?s. Saw a marked improvement in attitude, libido, BP, cholesterol and lean muscle mass. I found it to be a pain though.
In January, I went to 100mg injections every 2 weeks. Attitude and libido got even better. I?d like to have more, but I can?t say I need it. I will probably be tested again later this month, so we?ll see.

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If you’re getting satisfactory results with the TRIBEX fantastic. I’d be curious to see what your free test levels are with the TRIBEX. Incidentally, at 150 mg/week of test cypionate I have no scrotal or gonadal shrinkage. This is an extremely low level of HRT.

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I shoot T cyprionate 200 mg/week and have no side effects, just many good ones. I’m 59, 6’2" and 195; lift three times a week and enjoy aerobic sex with my 30 y.o. Thai gf 3-4 times a week. My question is, do I have to cycle off? What happens if I don’t? What happens if I do?

I do a low dose of HGH everyday too, and I don’t want to cut back on my vitality.

What are my options?

–Dan

[quote]Bogart wrote:
I shoot T cyprionate 200 mg/week and have no side effects, just many good ones. I’m 59, 6’2" and 195; lift three times a week and enjoy aerobic sex with my 30 y.o. Thai gf 3-4 times a week. My question is, do I have to cycle off? What happens if I don’t? What happens if I do?

I do a low dose of HGH everyday too, and I don’t want to cut back on my vitality.

What are my options?

–Dan[/quote]

I wish I had your life. You may be able to get a better response over on the steroid forum.

[quote]Bogart wrote:
I shoot T cyprionate 200 mg/week and have no side effects, just many good ones. I’m 59, 6’2" and 195; lift three times a week and enjoy aerobic sex with my 30 y.o. Thai gf 3-4 times a week. My question is, do I have to cycle off? What happens if I don’t? What happens if I do?

I do a low dose of HGH everyday too, and I don’t want to cut back on my vitality.

What are my options?

–Dan[/quote]

No need to cycle off at your age, unless your girlfriend wants a baby.

If you do cycle off, you might not bounce back as quickly as a younger man, and the “dimunition of the marital impulse” might be quite severe.

If you stay on, keep tabs on your PSA (just in case) and make sure your hematocrit stays below 50.

As a safeguard, you might want to consider taking finasteride or dutasteride to keep the prostate and/or the hairline in check.

Also, given that aromatase enzymes elevate with age, you might want to consider M or a prescription anti-aromatase or estrogen blocker.

I am 50.

I feel the ONLY real way to know where you are, is to get you blood tested. The problem with HRT are sort of mentioned by TC (Atomic Dog)

If you ever cycle off, bouncing back is not easy
Possible increase hair loss
Possible prostate problems including benign prostrate hypertrophy
Increased estrogen levels requiring estrogen blocker.

Having said that, I am trying Alpha Male. My current blood work shows:

TESTOSTERONE TOTAL: 308 ng/dL (normal range 119-1104)
TESTOSTERONE FREE: 104 pg/mL (normal range 43.0-200.0)
TESTOSTERONE BIOAVAILABLE: 232 ng/dL (normal range 108.0-506.0)
SHBG: 10 nmol/L (normal range 7-50)

I am on my third week. After 4 weeks, I will re-draw my blood and have it re-tested. That way I can tell for sure if Alpha Male works (for me).

Should I post my results?

Hey TC, what should I expect?

I am 42. Been lifting for about 25 yrs.

6’0", 215ibs. My guess is about 16%bf.

I get my blood lipid profile done every 6 mos. I asked my doc to start checking my total testosterone about 2 yrs. ago.

I am usually at about 1100-1200 each time. I used to use TRIBEX and ZMA and never cycled off. I am now using Alpha Male and I do a 5 day on 2 day off cycle and usually Skip about two weeks between bottles.

Not sure what my free test would be w/o the supps. I eat a high protien diet mostly via shakes (about 300 gms./day)and a lot of chicken and fish. An occasional steak also. I drink in moderation, wine only.

Recovery is good. Strength is high for my age group. Energy level always pretty strong. Libido…no worries. Go as often as my wife is willing, then I call the girlfriend (just kidding honey!)

Alpha Male is the real deal for me. Can’t say enough about it. I’d try that before anything else.

So, about the baby–Sookie wants to know.
Me too. Is sperm count suppressed by HRT? Semen volume doesn’t seem to be reduced.

–d

[quote]Bogart wrote:
So, about the baby–Sookie wants to know.
Me too. Is sperm count suppressed by HRT? Semen volume doesn’t seem to be reduced.

–d[/quote]

Sperm count is suppressed by HRT as replacement is an inexact science.

Ten years ago, the WHO, based on a 10 nation study, recommended that 200 mg, of Test enanthate–weekly–would make an effective male contraceptive.

However, if you were replacing JUST enough to bring you consistently to high normal, you probably wouldn’t suffer any reduction in sperm count.

T:

I’m following you with your advice, EXCEPT:

What is the value of watching your hematocrit?

Another subject I would love your input on.

There SEEMS to be a suggestion showing up in the literature that while Total Free T is important…it may be the Testosterone/Estradiol RATIO that is more important.

In other words, you can be pumping yourself up with T to levels that would put Ronnie C to shame…but that if you are aromatizing a large percentage of it, results would be less than optimal.

(I have not read of any “ideal” ratio…have you?)

Thanks, T!

Mufasa

[quote]t-guy69 wrote:

Should I post my results?

[/quote]

Please do so. I would be very interested to hear them.

-J

[quote]Mufasa wrote:
T:

I’m following you with your advice, EXCEPT:

What is the value of watching your hematocrit?

Another subject I would love your input on.

There SEEMS to be a suggestion showing up in the literature that while Total Free T is important…it may be the Testosterone/Estradiol RATIO that is more important.

In other words, you can be pumping yourself up with T to levels that would put Ronnie C to shame…but that if you are aromatizing a large percentage of it, results would be less than optimal.

(I have not read of any “ideal” ratio…have you?)

Thanks, T!

Mufasa[/quote]

the value of watching hematocrit is determining if red blood cells are functioning properly. the other tests for this are hemoglobin and red blood count. androgens in large doses can cause red blood count to rise to unsafe levels which can cause cardiovascular problems.

normal HRT should not make these tests abnormal, but it is wise to monitor.

Thanks, getter!

Anyone with any ideas on the Testosterone/Estradiol Issue? (vs. looking simply at Total Free Testosterone?)

Mufasa

Test/Estrogen ratios are very important. When starting HRT and eastablishing the dose it’s important to keep track of estrogens along with then T. Sometimes a single dose of 10mg of Nolvadex can significantly lower enstrogen and elevate T. Happens all the time.

But all those issues aside, one thing i don’t understand is the fear of things like Prostate hypetrphy due to injectable hrt versus using a “safer” compound like TRIBEX. Any product that elevates ANY hormone WILL have the same side effect in your body as the real thing, It’s a medical fact. IMO might as well be on the real thing, or try elevating your T and lowering your E with things like tamoxifen (Nolvadex). It’s common practice in Europe but it’s slow to be accepted by the American Medical community, which tends to see things as VERY black and white.