Hi there, lonnnng post here,
Weight: 180 pounds
Waist: tape measure around navel: 36.25 inches
Describe body and facial hair: I’m a pretty hairy guy, always have been from puberty which started very early at 11 years old, voice broke at 12 years old.
Very hairy legs, hairy abdomen & chest, forearms, some upper arm & some hair on my back & shoulders.
Facial hair: I have a full beard that grew quite well pre TRT, and better since TRT.
-describe where you carry fat and how changed: I carry it everywhere but with a slight emphasis on hips & stomach. Not a female body shape, but I’m surprised I carry this fat at all, given how much exercise I do.
No changes to fat deposition.
-health conditions, symptoms: Since TRT in Dec 2014 & stopping tobacco in 2015, not many. Shrunken testes definitely. They are 2/3 pre TRT size & I thought they were small pre TRT since using antidepressants.
Also sex function is much better since TRT but is still strongly affected by antidepressants, particularly venlafaxine. If I have a 2 day break from venlafaxine my erections are 7/10. With venlafaxine they are 5/10. Pre TRT they were 2/10 - I needed Viagra for all sex.
Libido is good on TRT - I want sex at least 4 times a week, including jerking off (haha) but again blunted by venlafaxine. A brief 2 day break from that drug & I want sex 3 days in a row.
I’ve been on TRT using Testogel 50mg once per day, for 3 years now.
I’m 41 years old & my blood work in Dec 2014 was as follows:
Serum free testosterone: 213 pmol/L (range 243 - 571 pmol/L )
Serum testosterone: 14 nmol/L (range 11.4 - 27.9 nmol/L )
Serum SHBG: 47 nmol/L ( range 18 - 54 nmol/L )
Serum albumin: 50g/L ( range 35 - 52 g/L )
From symptoms, I believe I’ve had low testosterone for a long time - since 2000 - and my belief is that comes from using antidepressants of the SSRI class since 2000 - they really lowered my libido & sex function very quickly.
To the point where within 2 months of using antidepressants I had no confidence at all in getting or keeping an erection. Things worked well before that.
I was prescribed antidepressants from 2000 - 2003. And I’ve continually taken antidepressants since 2007.
I had a very strong libido since puberty at 11 years old until 18, when clinical depression started. I’m confident I had good testosterone levels as a young adult.
I did have testosterone blood tests done in 1996 due to a depression diagnosis & my testosterone levels were good - about the same as my current Testogel levels, from memory. That was after a year of the usual student heavy alcohol use, as well.
In 2007 I had my testosterone checked again & it was low then - I’ll see if I can get details of that test from my doctor.
Since 2007 I’ve used the following antidepressants:
2007 - 2012: fluoxetine.
2012 for 4 weeks only: sertraline (it gave me horrible anxiety)
2013 - present: I use 2 antidepressants - venlafaxine 150mg & Mirtazapine 30mg
These antidepressants work great
Since starting Testogel 50mg in Dec 2014, and exfoliating the application area in the shower, I’ve had consistently good blood test results & subjectively I feel great too - good energy, improved mood & sense of well being.
The only side effect I’ve had is shrunken balls 18 months into Testogel I went through a brief period where my testicles ached, but that went away.
My semen volume & how healthy it looks (lol) is much better than what it was pre Testogel.
Here’s a typical blood result from the Testogel:
Serum free testosterone: 461 pmol/L (range 243 - 571 pmol/L )
Serum testosterone: 22.6 nmol/L (range 11.4 - 27.9 nmol/L )
Serum SHBG: 32 nmol/L ( range 18 - 54 nmol/L )
Serum albumin: 50g/L ( range 35 - 52 g/L )
The last bit of my history/life style - I live a very clean lifestyle - I don’t use alcohol or other drugs & I don’t smoke anymore. I smoked from 2011 - 2016 - it was dabbling with cigars that got me.
I’m fit from regular weight training, hiking & generally move a lot & don’t sit down much.
I’d like to try restarting my own testosterone production simply because I don’t want to be so heavily dependent on daily medication & would like to be as naturally healthy as possible.
Part of this natural wellbeing is certainly attempting to taper off antidepressants as well - although I have always had a depressive mind - and really I should’ve been on antidepressants since about 12 years old - I felt terrible since 12 years old until I consistently took antidepressants from 2007. Therefore I don’t know how realistic being off psychiatric medication actually is.
I would like to ask a few things:
Are antidepressants of the SSRI/ SNRI classes & ones like Mirtazapine known to suppress natural testosterone production?
Generally, how likely is a successful restart of my natural testosterone production after 3 years on TRT (with no HCG).
How would I go about attempting a restart given the complications of using 2 antidepressants as well.
Phew, long post! Thanks for reading & any & all help