T Nation

Levels Dropped in Half from 10mg Dose Reduction

Back in October, I ran out of Empower and switched to Perrigo with my new Dr.

It’s been working just fine. About a month ago, we checked my levels which came back at about 1300 TT, 41 FT, and 40 E2. I decided to go from 22mg/day down to 20mg/day.

Just got my levels tested again a month later, came back at 617 TT, 30 FT, 13 E2. Aside from my E2 being too low (yet I feel fine), I have no clue why this would happen.

Perhaps the Empower was stronger and finally got out of my system? Getting really sick of these fluctuations - one of the main reasons I was excited to see how I did on a different brand.

Any ideas? I feel fine, dick works, libido has been a bit low compared to 1-2 months ago, but I do think my body composition has changed a bit for the worse. Maybe.

I’ve read many stories of guys switching to Perrigo and not liking it. Not sure why, and that’s not scientific. Like you said you feel fine, just lower numbers, so maybe it’s the rate you’re absorbing the oil? Seen a lot lately on variations based on the carrier oil. Empower uses grape seed and it absorbs slower compared to cotton seed (so they say)

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Same lab?

I mean you did take the labs with tt at 1300 while on Perrigo.

I would retake labs to confirm.

Also are you doing the same strengh. my Perrigo is 1ml/200mg.

What is yours and what was the empower?

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I was actually dreading this but kept an open mind. I noticed too that the Perrigo I have is manufactured at the same facility as Westward (which people seem to like). I’ve had some ups and downs, but I’ve attributed that to more recent changes with an antidepressant I take.

Of course if it is the oil, and my levels dropped in half from Empower wearing off, that would easily explain some of the issues too.

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Yup, Labcorp both times.

Mine is also 1/200, as was the Empower. Just checked now actually.

I have some bloodwork for anemia coming up in a week, I’ll ask them to add a hormone panel too and see where I’m at. If it’s still in the 600 range, I’ll bump up the dose some. Although I normally feel best <1000 TT.

There is a lot here. Dose changes do not result in linear labs results. There can be some variation in how the patients respond to the different carrier oils. LC/MS/MS methodology can be inconsistent, as I was told by someone who uses the equipment, though labs would deny that. I’ve seen crazy levels, only to have them drop 80% upon retesting days later. These were on women using daily creams.

Bottom line, it does not sound as though you are feeling significantly different. If you are happy with your results, I’m not sure I would overthink it.

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Thanks man, good points.

I’ll get retested as well and see where it lands. The doctor doing that uses Quest too, versus Labcorp.

Labs taken at the same time in relation to your dosing schedule? Using the same kind of syringes and needles?

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Within 3 hours of the same time of day of each other. And no injection prior.

Same needles and everything, just switched brands of T cyp. Something like this:

Early Oct - switched from Empower to Perrigo
Early Nov - 1300 TT
Early Nov (few days after test) - lowered dose by 2mg/day
Early Dec - 600 TT

That’s wild. There are little variations between one brand or another, but that difference in results is absolutely massive.

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Hey guys, wanted to give an update.

I got my levels tested last week, also by LabCorp.

TT went from 600 to 900, FT is about the same. They used the “total estrogens” test so that doesn’t help much. I wish I had that number, because if my E2 was really 13, it’d explain the garbage libido, ED, and what I perceive as an increase in belly fat.

The other thing I noticed, on my last test they actually ran 2 different TT tests, one came in around 615 the other around 630. So I’d assume that was accurate at the time.

This makes about zero sense now. Is there a “wrong” TT test that would show either overly high or low numbers?

My neurologist/endocrinologist agreed to order another test (she always orders the right one) to help me sort it out. I did raise my dose this week to 168mg (from 140mg) to see how I feel.

To emphasize one more point, I’ve noticed my libido and ED going from nonexistent (haven’t needed sildenafil in ages, and my gf and I have been having our best sex yet), to the last couple weeks where my dick hasn’t budged even to the weirdest porn I could find. We went to have sex tonight - after 100mg of sildenafil - and literally nothing happened for me. I’m super into her, and she always turns me on even when I’m not in the mood at all, so I know it’s not anything to do with her or us. She’s thankfully very supportive and understanding, so I’m not getting really any performance anxiety. It just sucks, as emotionally I want to have sex!

Only other change was increasing my antidepressant dose at the beginning of December, but I went from the max dose to above the max dose. Even at the max dose, I was performing like a champ, minus anorgasmia (which just led to me being even more turned on by her). I’d be willing to place bets on my wonky T and E2 levels first.

Thanks for any advice guys.

Changing testosterone brand could be like changing a protocol. So need to wait to restabalize.
And the change in anti depressed I would think can certainly mess things up

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I would be looking at this as a potential culprit. You’re under the illusion that at the max dose you’re fine, so taking a little more than the max shouldn’t be that disruptive. It’s fine, everyone thinks this for reasons that make logical sense. But medicine doesn’t work that way. There is a threshold dose for everyone, where beyond that point all sorts of things can happen. We assume that incremental changes in dose will cause incremental changes in side effects. But it’s not always linear like that.

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You’ve got a good point man. It’s not really renowned for causing ED but it definitely happens on this med.

I’ve also realized my nicotine use has gone up recently. Considering I used to use my ex’s vape when I took Cialis and couldn’t get make the old boy go down, I wonder if that’s compounding the problem. Nicotine I can live without, whereas the AD at least serves a purpose. I know nicotine suppresses estradiol too but I can’t imagine it’s enough to drive it down to 13.

Going to cut the nicotine, get the right blood test, and see where I’m at by then.