Hello everyone, this is my first post but I’ve been a long time lurker on the forums.
I’m a 36 year old male, 6’4", 215lbs, probably around 15% bf currently
In short, 5 years ago I took finasteride for a few months and it gave me horrible anxiety and daily panic attacks. I didn’t realize it was from the finasteride until I ran out and immediately the panic attacks stopped. Needless to say I stopped taking it and generally returned more or less to normal with anxiety and panic much improved. Unfortunately I never had blood work done during this time.
About a year and a half ago I was starting to notice signs of low T and, sure enough, several blood tests showed results in the 300 range. I was initially given clomid which worked but then I had to come off of it and my levels crashed even lower into the 200s.
For the last 4 months I have been on testosterone replacement, being dosed 100 mg/mL per week which I split into two doses, and hcg 250 mcg twice a week.
About two months into treatment I got bloodwork done, I was dealing with a lot of anxiety and increased heart rate. My lab results at that time looked pretty good with the exception of very low estrogen.
Test 1 (2 months ago)
Test - 925 ng/dl
Free Test 23.3 pg/mL
DHT 63 ng/dL
Estradiol <5.0 pg/mL
I was taking .5mg anastrozole twice a week during that time and after I stopped my heart rate issues improved. However, my anxiety would still come and go. Sometimes I’d feel good, no anxiety, and then a day later I couldn’t get out of bed, heart racing, palms sweating, lump in the throat, pure panic. Just as a side note I’ve had two EKGs and both were fine.
After asking my doctor I lowered my test to 80 per week with eod shots of hcg. This seemed to work really well for a week or two and then, bam, another series of panic days.
I had my most recent labs done a week ago and this is how things looked leading up to the labs:
The day before the labs I took 20 mg/mL testosterone (I was taking my shots more frequently to see if that might help with the anxiety)
The day before that I took 250 mcg HCG
Testosterone, Total, LC/MS 438.7 ng/dL 264.0 - 916.0
Free Testosterone(Direct) 11.0 pg/mL 8.7 - 25.1
Pregnenolone, MS 47 ng/dL <150
Dihydrotestosterone 43 ng/dL 30 - 85
DHEA-Sulfate 413.6 ug/dL 102.6 - 416.3
TSH 3.120 uIU/mL 0.450 - 4.500
FSH <0.2 Low mIU/mL 1.5 - 12.4
Estradiol 14.5 pg/mL 7.6 - 42.6
Insulin-Like Growth Factor I 325 High ng/mL 88 - 246
Vitamin D, 25-Hydroxy 47.6 ng/mL 30.0 - 100.0
Progesterone 0.2 ng/mL 0.0 - 0.5
Sex Horm Binding Glob, Serum 32.0 nmol/L 16.5 - 55.9
I actually felt decent during the day of the bloodwork, not ideal, but not horribly anxious.
I wish that I had bloodwork from the time I took the finasteride to compare.
My thoughts were that I need to get my vitamin D levels up, maybe start taking some iodine for the TSH, go back to my normal dosing schedule of test (what I was doing during the first blood test, minus the anastrozole), and very look at using a cream to bring up my pregnenolone. I’ve read that lowered pregnenolone can lead to lower GABA levels and increased anxiety (https://neuro.psychiatryonline.org/doi/pdf/10.1176/jnp.13.3.396), and when I have taken Ativan (which works on GABA receptors) that I feel “normal”. I should also note that I did a 4 panel cortisol test a few months back and the results showed me as high in the morning and at night, and I know there can be some interaction between pregnenolone and cortisol. Those are just the ideas I’m throwing around, but I’d love everyone’s take…especially KSman!