T Nation

Low T or PTSD?

I had an automobile accident about 6 years ago and sustained a severe head injury and from the moment I woke up in the hospital I felt groggy. Long story short I have all the symptoms of Low T (fatigue, anxiety, sleep problems, low libido…), which also happen to be the symptoms for PTSD (mind you I don’t have flash backs or revisit the traumatic event which are common PTSD symptoms).

About two years back, when I was 26, I had my testosterone tested and it came back in the low but normal range (325 ng/dl). I was aware that was the testosterone for an 80 year old man but the doc said it was in the normal range so didn’t want to prescribe me T or anything. As time passed the grogginess continued and so did all the other symptoms. I went to see head docs and they said I have PTSD and put me on anti-depressants, which didn’t do much, if anything made matters worse.

One day I go to GNC and buy tribulus, what do you know ALL OF MY SYMPTOMS DISAPEAR. Does it sound like my problems are being caused by low T or PTSD? … I feel very alone and lost in this struggle. I feel being prescribed testosterone will solve all my problems but the docs don’t want to do that… What do you think it is? What should I do? I just had a some lab tests done the other day please tell me what you think

TSH 1.73
FSH 2.1
Prolactin 5.0
LH 2.51

WBC 4.8
Red Blood Cell 5.04
Hemoglobin 15.5
Hematocrit 46.9
MCV 93.1
MCH 30.8
MCHC 33.1
RDW 12.7
Platelet Count on 294
Citrated Bld
MPV 8.3
Diff Review
AUTOMATED DIFFERENTIAL
NEUTROPHILS 64.9
LYMPHOCYTES 26.4
MONOCYTES 7
EOSINOPHILS 1
BASOPHILS .7
NEUTROPHILS 3.1
LYMPHS, ABS, COUNT 1.3
MONOCYTES .3
EOSINOPHILS 0.0
BASOS, ABS. COUNT 0.0

UREA NITROGEN 15
CREATINE .95
SODIUM 144
POTASSIUM 4.7
CHLORIDE 103
C02 27
ANION GAP 14
GLUCOSE 87
CALCIUM 9.9
PROTEIN, TOTAL 7.8
SERUM
ALBUMIN 4.9
A/R RATIO 1.7
BILIRUBIN, TOTAL .8
ALKALINE 57
PHOSPHATASE
AST 28
ALT 38
EGFR 94

Read the advice for new guys sticky and note comments about causes.

One cause is the blow to the head.

Your thyroid function could also be poor. Post waking and mid afternoon body temperatures and history of use for iodized salt and vitamins that list iodine.

There can be other problems from the brain/pituitary injury. A MRI might show some details. Check your IGF-1 to eval GH status. Do an AM cortisol test at 8AM; which presumes some kind of normal sleep pattern.

Lab work needed:
DHEA-S
IGF-1
AM cortisol
TSH, fT3, fT4 [T3 and T4 not good enough]
rT3 [with your history, you may have adrenal fatigue]
fasting cholesterol
fasting glucose
E2

You have secondary hypogonadism [LH/FSH]. Prolactin is lowish, thus not a cause.

Your dopamine might be low. This would be evident at a lack of reward or satisfaction. However, much of the spectrum of symptoms are also common to low T levels.

Thanks bud!! Very interesting find on the secondary hypogonadism. I am going to make an appointment with the endo, how do you suggest I approach him with telling him I think I have secondary hypogonadism. I’m afraid he’s going to say my LH/FSH levels (although low) are in range and wont want to prescribe me anything… Is this a possibility that he’ll blow me off or do you think when he sees the results he’ll clearly see and say I have secondary hypogonadism?

Google keywords- traumatic brain injury + low LH, pituitary, testosterone, etc.

Read up. If all these symptoms started post-wreck, you’ll figure out how to approach him.

TT=325 is one thing, but FT is another. TT is around 50% SHBG+T which is not bio-available. FSH is a better indicator of what is going on a LH changes a lot.

The other lab data is important. Lab ranges are important too.

Prolactin is lowish, considered a good thing by some.

TSH, read my first post here re thyroid, iodine and body temperatures. Respond with more info.

LH/FSH are rather low and consistent with your TT=325