Been lurking for a few weeks and have learned a tremendous amount. KSMan, ctastrophe et al are more knowledgeable and empathetic than any of the doctors I’ve seen lately. A hell of a lot cheaper, too
A little background: I’m 36 and have dealt with fatigue and sleep problems for most of my adult life. 15 years ago I was diagnosed with Narcolepsy. Since then I have relied primarily upon stimulants (adderall, ritalin, etc.) and caffeine to stay awake. I’ve tried tons of different meds – Xyrem, Provigil, Wellbutrin, to name a few – and they were either ineffective or the side effects intolerable.
Recently, I began looking into alternative sources of energy. (Being perpetually zonked on stimulants tends to lose its appeal after a decade or so.) So I decided to get my testosterone checked. Here are my labs (all testing done at LabCorp):
Test #1: 8/21/12, 9:51 am, non-fasting
Testosterone, serum 461 ng/dL (348-1197)
Free Testosterone (Direct) 8.1 pg/mL (8.7-25.1)
Concerned by the low-ish levels, I sought out the aid of an Endocrinologist, who had me re-tested:
Test #2: 9/4/12, 8:45 am, non-fasting
Testosterone, serum 584
Free Testosterone (Direct) 11.3
LH 2.3 mIU/mL (1.7-8.6)
FSH 2.9 mIU/mL (1.5-12.4)
Prolactin 15.1 ng/mL (4.0-15.2)
TSH 1.24 uIU/mL (0.45-4.5)
Free T4 (Direct) .87 ng/dL (.82-1.77)
Perhaps not surprisingly, the Endocrinologist concluded there was nothing wrong and decided to take no action. Subsequent research in the T-Nation forums convinced me to get my Estradiol and SHBG levels checked, which I did, along with the other essentials, two weeks later:
Test #3: 9/20/12, 9:20 am, fasting
Testosterone, serum 767
Free Testosterone 12.1
Estradiol (Roche ECLIA Methodology) 24.7 pg/mL (7.6-42.6)
SHBG 49.4 nmol/L (16.5-55.9)
Needless to say, I was pretty surprised by the latest numbers.
When I took the first test, I had been off Adderall for over a month – my first extended stimulant break in half a decade – and had been almost completely sedentary during that period. Shortly after the first test, I went back on Adderall.
After the second test, I started taking 4000 IU of D3 daily. I also got a couple of B12 shots, which I’d never tried before. Other than that, my basic lifestyle (diet, exercise) remained the same.
I am encouraged by the improvement, but also a bit perplexed. Any theories on why my levels jumped so quickly? Could it really be attributed to the Adderall, D3, and/or B12? What about the fact that I was fasting before the third test?
Any advice on where to go from here? My energy has improved a bit but I’m still plagued by apathy, brain fog, and low libido. I am grateful for any input. Thanks