T Nation

Quick Help Please RE: Symptoms



Not sure if this belongs here or not but worth a shot? I had my T levels tested almost exactly one year ago as follows:

Testosterone, serum 423 348-1197ng/dL

Testosterone,Free 13.07 5.00-21.00 ng/dL

% Free Testosterone 3.09 1.50-4.20 %

TSH 1.350 0.450-4.500 uIU/mL

Thyroxine (T4) 4.9 4.5-12.0 ug/dL

T3 Uptake 35 24-39 %

Free Thyroxine Index 1.7 1.2-4.9

Prostate Specific Ag, Serum 0.6 0.0-4.0 ng/mL

Insulin-Like Growth Factor I 118 88-246 ng/mL 02

Estradiol, Sensitive <3 LOW 3-70 pg/mL 02

I am 36, Fairly healthy and active. I don’t usually have any of the normal symptoms of Low T aside from a slightly decreased libido and some difficulties with ED at times, but not too much anymore. What I find troubling is that after heavy exertion, such as lifting - I can be wiped out for a week or so. I will get brain foggy, weak, lethargic, difficulty with sleeping, low libido, ED …all the symptoms of Low T.

Is it likely that my recovery is affected due to my Lower T levels or perhaps something else? I just find it odd that I feel OK until I push myself in the gym - then I crash hard.

I am thinking about having a consultation with a clinic and getting their opinion as well.

Thanks for any input


I think it’s your thyroid not your T. Need better labs to tell. Your TSH is and T4 are low. Thyroid problems present similar symptoms to low T. Your total and free T are normal but I would retest when you get the full blood panel. Need to include LH/FSH, prolactin, T, E2, CBC, TSH, T4, T3, DHT


Thanks for the quick reply, i might have that info at home. I will check and post if so. What are your thoughts re: the low estradiol number?


Low E2 has its own gamut of symptoms but again some of those parallel low T including lack of libido. Not sure why your E would be so low naturally. KSman could probably give an educated input, I cannot.


Please read these stickies found here: About the T Replacement Category

  • advice for new guys
  • things that damage your hormones
  • protocol for injections
  • thyroid basics
  • finding a TRT doc

Post all labs with ranges.

Check your oral body temperatures as per the thyroid basics sticky, this can be more informative than thyroid labs.

Thyroid function can be low from not using iodized salt and/or vitamins that list iodine+selenium

Thyroid symptoms:

  • dry skin, brittle nails/hair, generalized hair thinning
  • sparse outer eyebrows
  • feel cold easily

Do these labs:
fT4 [not T3, T4]
AM cortisol, at 8AM please

Your metabolic collapse after training suggests adrenal fatigue, see references to that in the thyroid basics sticky as well as: rT3, cortisol, stress, Wilson’s book.

Describe how stress is/was a part of your life as well as high stress events, surgeries, illnesses etc.

Do not test DHT, will be low if T is low.


Lol yup, anybody over 65 here should just put… Because I’m old!


OK, thanks I will look further into it, I appreciate your help



I will go back and re-read the stickies. I have read through them before, but it was a couple years back at this point, and it was very overwhelming trying to go through it again.

We do not use iodized salt, but that can be easily fixed. I do notice that I get cold very easy, have dry skin, and also have a low resting heart rate (mid 50s) which I read was another issue with thyroid dysfunction. I will start checking my temps and recording them.

As far as stress goes - I am pretty low stress. Some concerns about money, but not too bad. I have two little kids that sometimes keep me up at night, so sleep is broken, but overall not horrible.

I will read further into Adrenal fatigue, thank you. That really is one of the most concerning things to me -as it seems every time I try to do anything exerting (lifting, boxing etc…) I break down and it will take days to weeks to recover.

I will keep everyone updated with info as I have it.

Again, thank you


The red flag that went off for me is adrenal fatigue. I have it (very low cortisol) and have the same symptoms. I also have low E2, so that brings up some interesting thoughts. But I would check your cortisol rhythms with a saliva test.


My E2 value was literally off the charts low at <3 with reference norms at 3-70pg/mL. Do you know why your E2 is low and how that affects you? From what I can find it is rare for E2 levels to be low, more common for it to be high. I also find limited information re: what happens when it is so low - aside from generalities of it having a negative effect of testosterone, body fat and bone density.


Mine was/is off the charts (just started TRT this week) low. I have symptoms of dry, achy joints, mood swings, lethargy, low mood, brain fog, weak, bad sleep, etc. Not sure if it’s my low T, low E2 or low cortisol. I thought it was cortisol because after improving it a little I had better sleep more eneryg and better mood. So not sure. I’m looking forward to my next labs in 5 weeks to see where T and E are and to reassess how I’m feeling based off of those numbers.


Sounds good, glad you are feeling better so fast - best of luck to you


So I have been checking my temps and they are running low. This morning I happened to be very hot in bed prior to checking and was at 98.1, but yesterday afternoon and this afternoon ( and throughout the day as well) I have been at 97.9 - not even cracking 98 once. I purchased some iodine and have begun supplementing as well.

I do have another question however…

My TSH number is 1.35 which I understand is a good number ref range of (0.45-4.5 uIU/mL)

However my T4 is low 4.9 ref range of (4.5-12.0 ug/dL)

Why would TSH be appropriate and T4 be low. If it was a case of ID you would expect TSH to be high as well right?

I did find this link which someone has a similar question and was answered with the idea that the TSH and T4/T3 values were due to kidney dysfunction…http://www.thyroidmanager.org/question/low-t4-and-t3-but-normal-tsh/

Some of my kidney values…

BUN 27 (ref range 6-20 mg/dL)

Creatinine, Serum 1.05 (ref range 0.76-1.27 mg/dL)

BUN/Creatinine Ratio 26 (ref range 8-19)

I understand that BUN can be elevated simply due to extra protein consumption…and I do take in about 1g per lb (180g/day)…but you would not expect that to be broken down into urea if it was being used appropriately due to training…

thoughts re the TSH/T4 and kidney stuff?

EDIT - well I just read that it is very normal to have high BUN when ingesting high protein…that then makes me wonder perhaps the amount of protein I am ingesting really is not necessary if it is just being broken down and excreted…perhaps that applies to more people as well?