T Nation

TRT Success Story (Just Don't Tell my Doc...)


#1

Hi,

I just wanted to introduce myself and say how much this forum has helped me.

I’m a 44 year old member of a regional rescue squad. I’m a combat veteran and I have been active my whole life. I’m pretty healthy and my job requires a certain amount of strength and confidence. Over the years I have plateaued at the gym and on the track. I chalked it up to being “old.” My annual bloodwork had been showing low hemoglobin, borderline low hematocrit, and high glucose. My doc would say that I needed to cut sweets and work out more. My diet is pretty good (other than my occasional enjoyment of whiskey), I don’t eat sugar, very low carbs, high protein, and I work out regularly (long run day, lift day, sprint day, rest, repeat). I started to really struggle with belly fat and poor metabolism. Again, I just thought I was getting old.

The one thing that really bothered me was this lingering feeling that “something is wrong.” I was never settled or content. I wasn’t brave like I used to be and my mind was foggy. I didn’t feel like myself. I thought I might need to look for a new job if I couldn’t get past this. I would be a liability to my team.

One day I shared this with one of my teammates and he told me that he had low T and that he was on androgel. I asked my doc about it and convinced him to check. He called me back and said my “T was only 53” and I needed to come in. He put me on 200 mg test cyp every other week.

I started feeling like myself within the first week. It was great. The main thing – above anything else - was that I didn’t feel anxious anymore. That was great. I felt like I got my brave back. I started to drop some belly fat and for the first time in years, I actually started to improve in my workout program.

The only problem was that I felt crummy at the end of the second week before my next shot. After 6 months on TRT, 200mg EoW, my bloodwork came back as:
A1c – 5.8%
Mean plasma glucose - 129
Total T – 556 (250-1000)
Free T – 141.9 (35-155)

Bloodwork taken 7 days after shot with 7 days remaining before the next shot.
My doc said he feels like 500 is as high as I need to be at my age, but couldn’t justify why.

After reading this forum, I asked my doc if I could take 100mg weekly and he agreed. That seemed to help a little with the end-of-week anxiety for the time.

After a few months, the symptoms started to creep back. Fat, slow, foggy, unmotivated. I wondered if my total numbers were down and since my natural production was shut down, I wasn’t getting the same effect. So, I started taking 140mg every week and I have felt great ever since. No symptoms of gyno or anything. Still some occasional ED, but Viagra has been a huge help.

I can’t imagine if I had to spend my life feeling that way I used to feel. I felt like I was trapped in someone else’s body, and now I’m back to myself. Reading this forum has made a world of difference for me. I’m thankful for the advice you all have shared here. Hopefully I’m on the right path now.

Thanks!


#2

Welcome. Glad you’re doing so well. You don’t mention any other meds you might be taking as part of your TRT protocol. Do you take an aromatase inhibitor? Hcg?

Also, you list your T numbers but nothing else. Does your doc monitor your E2 levels?


#3

My doc doesn’t monitor anything else. I wonder about E2. I would have to drive 75 miles to the next town to find another doc. I might though. I don’t go back for bloodwork for 12 months. I worry if my E2 numbers come back high, he will just lower my TRT dose. He got agitated when I asked to go up from 100 mg EW.

I don’t take any other meds for TRT.

Incidentally, I have taken 0.2 mg synthroid since I was 22. I had it killed with radioactive I131 because I was hypo from Graves’
disease. I’ve wondered if that has any bearing on associated endocrine problems.

I take meds for borderline high BP and high triglycerides. I have had high LDL and low HDLs for 20 years despite a good diet and regular exercise. I’m curious to see if TRT helps with any of that.

I feel great, but I would love any advice!


#4

You can pay for your own labs at any private lab. It’s important to monitor the E2. If it’s high it can lead to a lot of problems.


#5

I’ll ask him to check E2 next bloodwork. If he says no, I’ll check into private labs. Thank you.


#6

Your thyroid meds may be wrong as well.

Please follow/read these links in 2nd post of 1st forum topic:

  • advice for new guys’
  • things that damage your hormones
  • protocol for injections
  • thyroid basics explained - check oral body temperatures as suggested
  • finding a TRT doc - I know…

Please note that body temperatures are a good guide to thyroid dosing.

Suggest these labs:
TT
FT
E2
TSH
fT3
fT4 [please not T3, T4]
If a lot of stress in your life, or over training, rT3
AM cortisol [at 8AM please]
IGF-1
occult blood test

Low T can thin blood a bit, but so can a GI bleed.
Any food allergies, sensitivities or digestive issues?
Do you use meds for heart burn?

Suggest 50mg T cyp twice a week with 1/2" #29 0.5ml [50iu] insulin syringes. No Rx needed in many jurisdictions. ~$14/100 at WalMart/Sams


#7

I don’t know my exact TSH numbers. He only tells me if I’m “good” or not. I’m going to start insisting on seeing the lab numbers. He also won’t run T3 or T4. He says there’s no point because my thyroid is totally nonfunctional now and I get all my thyroid hormone orally. I don’t know if that’s accurate, but I believed him. Now I’m really starting to doubt him more on lots of things.

I take a ton of heartburn meds: nexium, Dexilant, tums, Pepsid AC, Pepsid complete. My acid reflux is crippling if I don’t keep meds on board every day. I’m curious why you asked that.


#8

I don’t have any food allergies.

Your recommended dose of 50mg twice a week is lower than the 140 once a week I’m taking now. Why are you suggesting a lower dose?

I inject with 1ml 1" 25g needles. I load the test from a 18g needle and then put the 25g needle back on. It works really well, but I’d be up for a shorter or thinner needle. I tried insulin syringes, but sometimes the plunger would fail after drawing in the test and the med would leak around the plunger. Then I was losing test and didn’t know how much was getting into my body.

I was thinking about sticking with a once a week dose because I don’t have the crash I had when I was injecting EOW. But I still have some time between shots. My reasoning is that I go out into the field a couple times a month and its a pain to bring the meds and needles with me.

I really appreciate the advice and feedback!


#9

Here is the intro info that I forgot to do in my first post:

In your case/thread opening post:
-age: 44
-height: 5’9"
-waist 34
-weight 195
-describe body and facial hair: light hair all over body; thick, full head of hair; can’t grow a full beard.
-describe where you carry fat and how changed: usually carry fat on my belly, belly fat has dropped as well as fat over my pecs.
-health conditions, symptoms [history]: Graves disease (high and low TSH)
-Rx and OTC drugs, any hair loss drugs or prostate drugs ever: BP meds, triglycerides meds, Niacin 1500 every day, baby aspirin, fish oil, synthroid 0.2mg, nexium or dexillant.

-describe diet [some create substantial damage with starvation diets]: low carb (protein shake and 4 eggs with spinach for breakfast, salad or chicken wrap for lunch, chicken with veggies for dinner.) Drink 2 drinks a night.
-describe training [some ruin there hormones by over training]: full upper body, sprint, kickbox, repeat.
-testes ache, ever, with a fever? no, only after getting snipped
-how have morning wood and nocturnal erections changed: went down before TRT, got better, got worse again with high E2.


#10

Finally got blood work:

CBC With Differential/Platelet
WBC 6.1 3.4-10.8 x10E3/uL 01
RBC 5.30 4.14-5.80 x10E6/uL 01
Hemoglobin 15.7 12.6-17.7 g/dL 01
Hematocrit 46.1 37.5-51.0 % 01
MCV 87 79-97 fL 01
MCH 29.6 26.6-33.0 pg 01
MCHC 34.1 31.5-35.7 g/dL 01
RDW 13.4 12.3-15.4 % 01
Platelets 245 150-379 x10E3/uL 01
Neutrophils 59 % 01
Lymphs 31 % 01
Monocytes 6 % 01
Eos 3 % 01
Basos 1 % 01
Neutrophils (Absolute) 3.6 1.4-7.0 x10E3/uL 01
Lymphs (Absolute) 1.9 0.7-3.1 x10E3/uL 01
Monocytes(Absolute) 0.4 0.1-0.9 x10E3/uL 01
Eos (Absolute) 0.2 0.0-0.4 x10E3/uL 01
Baso (Absolute) 0.1 0.0-0.2 x10E3/uL 01
Immature Granulocytes 0 % 01
Immature Grans (Abs) 0.0 0.0-0.1 x10E3/uL 01
Comp. Metabolic Panel (14)
Glucose, Serum 114 HIGH 65-99 mg/dL 01
BUN 21 6-24 mg/dL 01
Creatinine, Serum 0.94 0.76-1.27 mg/dL 01
eGFR If NonAfricn Am 99 >59 mL/min/1.73 01
eGFR If Africn Am 114 >59 mL/min/1.73 01
BUN/Creatinine Ratio 22 HIGH 9-20 01
Sodium, Serum 138 134-144 mmol/L 01
Potassium, Serum 4.5 3.5-5.2 mmol/L 01
Chloride, Serum 96 LOW 97-108 mmol/L 01
Carbon Dioxide, Total 25 18-29 mmol/L 01
Calcium, Serum 10.1 8.7-10.2 mg/dL 01
Protein, Total, Serum 6.9 6.0-8.5 g/dL 01
Albumin, Serum 4.8 3.5-5.5 g/dL 01
Globulin, Total 2.1 1.5-4.5 g/dL 01
A/G Ratio 2.3 1.1-2.5 01
Bilirubin, Total 0.6 0.0-1.2 mg/dL 01
Alkaline Phosphatase, S 47 39-117 IU/L 01
AST (SGOT) 32 0-40 IU/L 01
ALT (SGPT) 24 0-44 IU/L 01
Testosterone, Serum
Testosterone, Serum 620 348-1197 ng/dL 01
Comment: Comment 01
Adult male reference interval is based on a population of lean males
up to 40 years old.
Luteinizing Hormone(LH), S
LH <0.2 LOW 1.7-8.6 mIU/mL 01
FSH, Serum
FSH <0.2 LOW 1.5-12.4 mIU/mL 01
1 of 2
Estradiol
Estradiol 55.6 HIGH 7.6-42.6 pg/mL 01


#11

I had bloodwork done through PrivateMDLabs this week because my doc wouldn’t listen to me when I said that I was having ED even with 100mg of Viagra.

So, it turns out that my suspicion was right and my E2 is 55.6 (high is 42.6). Blood was taken on the morning of the last day of the week. Next shot was later that night. So, my trough T is around 600. Additionally, my BP is up to 160/90 despite the 20mg of lisinopril I take everyday. I just don’t feel right. Distant and moody. Sometimes I don’t like being around anyone but my wife and kids and best buddies. I’m still productive in the gym and everyone keeps telling me how big I’m getting. I don’t see it, but there must be something to it. My moodiness doesn’t track consistently with my injection patterns though. Like this week, I felt good on the last day before my shot.

I started TRT 6 months ago at 200 mg test cyp EoW. I felt like crap the last few days. Total T half way through the 2-week period was about 500. Three months ago, the doc let me change to weekly shots and I bumped up to 140 mg EW. Now my total T at the end of the week (day before the shot) is about 600.

I am thinking about going to 50 to 70 mg twice a week now (to match the original dose or my current dose.)

In the meantime, is my E2 high enough that I need to have something done ASAP? Should I lower my dose, switch to twice-weekly, or both?

Do I need an AI, or does E2 go down on it’s own?

Thanks!


#12

If you start twice weekly T injections, your E2 will probably come down a little. If you reduce your total weekly T dose, your E2 will probably come down a little. But, at your age, you will most likely need an AI to keep your E2 at optimal levels.


#13

Thanks for the reply. Is that something that I can do on my own, or will I need an Rx?


#14

If your Dr didnt want to test for E2, its unlikely that he will prescribe an AI. You should consider taking this into your own hands if necessary. Unfortunately, I cant tell you where to get this. You will have to do your own homework but there are forums where there are verified domestic sources that you can contact via a secure email address.


#15

I think I’m going to make the drive across the state to a low T center and show them my E2 results and ask for an AI. Then start pinning 2x per week. If that fails, I’ll order some peptides on line. I’m extremely nervous about ordering on-line, but I’m not going to go back to how I felt before TRT. Thanks for the help.


#16

I went to the Low T center across the state this week. I think it was worth the drive. They weren’t too excited when they found out that I self-administer. I’m sure that’s where their money is made, so I get that. They did offer me a discount for firefighters, which is great. The doc seemed really down to earth and listened to me. He even called me personally the next day with my results.

A week before the visit, I switched to pinning biweekly 0.25 ml, as some of you suggested. Three days after my last shot my numbers were:

Total T: 489
Free T was good, but I wrote down the number wrong. (I wrote 17.9, but that doesn’t make sense.)
E2 was 50 (over 42.6 is high).
SHBG is 6.2 (range 16-55).

My E2 10 days prior was 55.6 when I was taking 140 mg every week. I feel foggy and slow at 50 mg biweekly, so I am going to try 70 mg bi-weekly to see if I can feel like I did at 140 mg every week. (Same dose, just spread out over 3.5 days.) Maybe with less E2.

The doc said that low SHBG is what is keeping my Free T numbers up despite the average total T numbers. I guess I’m just lucky in that regard.

He said he doesn’t prescribe Arimadex unless the E2 number goes over 60, so he said to just try “DIM.”

Any thoughts on DIM dose or effectiveness? Good or bad brand names? I did some searches, but I haven’t found anything solid yet. I think I’m going to forget about on-line AI for now. I’m too scared of crashing by E2 and I feel pretty good now (other than the fog the day before my next shot.)

Thanks for the support and transparency on this forum. This is too complicated and important not to have honest discussions about it. I’m grateful for this group.


#17

I have been on DIM for one month now and injecting 70mg E3.5D. I re-did blood work at trough and my total T came back at 732, but with an E2 of 58. Everything else is normal. So, apparently DIM isn’t doing anything. The doc at the Low T clinic declined to prescribe an AI because I am prescribed T from my family doctor, and he’s not interested either.

I guess I am at the crossroads of trying research liquid AI, but I am still a little nervous about it. I feel pretty good and I am still improving slowly at the gym. I don’t carry a lot of body fat. I’m currently 200 lbs at 5’9" with 46" shoulders, 32" waist, and 17" biceps. I’m nothing spectacular, but I’m in very good shape. My only problem (and it’s kind of big) is occasional ED even with 100mg of Viagra on board. It’s becoming a problem between me and my wife, and it’s not a desire issue on my part. It’s 100% physiological, not psychological. Morning wood has gone away and sometime my desire even wanes.

The low T doc said not to worry about E2 unless it gets over 90. What has been the experience for you guys? Is anyone in the 50’s and feeling fine?

How safe is it to use research chemicals, like say, Extreme? Should I be looking at another option?

Thank you.


#18

Holy crap! E2 at 90 is when you should worry? If your E2 gets to 90 you’ll probably need a tampon. Your doc is clueless. I lose my libido at 35. I can’t even imagine what 50 would feel like! Yikes.


#19

Got some Liquidex and started at 0.5 ml (1ml/1mg) per week, divided into 0.25 ml per shot E3.5D. It works out to 11 drops per 0.25 ml. I thought I would start slow since my numbers aren’t that high and I don’t want to crash my E2. It has been a week and I had morning wood this morning. I’m hoping that this does the trick. Should I stay at this dose and retest E2 in a month?


#20

You have more patience than I.