Think of testosterone you may think of strength, muscle mass, and essentially; a fit and active man. And while this is a common stereotype, you’re not entirely wrong; testosterone does play a crucial role in controlling and regulating both of these functions in men, its also important in sex drive and the production of red blood cells and sperm. This is why when levels of this primary sex hormone begin to fluctuate, it can be a cause for concern in many men.

What’s important to note is that testosterone levels naturally change with age; most men begin to experience a decline at around the ages of 30 or 40 and there is no special treatment or secret fountain of youth to help combat this change. However, if your body is unable to produce the right amount of testosterone, a condition known as hypogonadism, testosterone replacement therapy (TRT), or androgen replacement therapy, is sometimes considered in order to reverse any unfavorable symptoms and side effects [2].

See also: Low Testosterone Symptoms in Men: Your Quick Guide to Low Testosterone


How does Testosterone Replacement Therapy work?


Male hypogonadism is a condition that occurs when the body doesn’t produce enough of the hormone testosterone; you can be born with this condition, or it can develop later in life as a result of an injury, infection, treatments, or certain medications. Over time, this can cause a number of complications such as erectile dysfunction, infertility, decreased hair growth, and loss of bone mass.

According to Mayo Clinic, male hypogonadism is often treated with TRT in order to help combat the signs and symptoms of the condition. This treatment works by raising low testosterone levels through a number of different forms, including:

  • Testosterone gel or solution
  • Injection
  • Patch
  • Nasal pump
  • Implant

It’s important to reiterate that testosterone therapy is recommended for those who have extremely low testosterone levels; if you are experiencing a shift in your testosterone levels as a result of age, TRT isn’t usually advised. If you are curious about your levels, you can test from home with LetsGetChecked.

See also: Low Testosterone Levels and Bodybuilding: What you Should Know


What are the benefits of Testosterone Replacement Therapy?


If you are advised that TRT is the right treatment for you, you will experience a number of shifts and changes, and the symptoms of hypogonadism will potentially be reversed. Some reports indicate that in men with hypogonadism, TRT can improve libido and sexual function, bone density, muscle mass, mood, and overall quality of life.


What are the side effects of TRT?


As there is no extensive research done surrounding TRT, it is difficult to pinpoint the side effects and risk factors. According to one report, one of the most disputed risks of TRT is the potential stimulation of prostate cancer through testosterone as there is no evidence that this risk exists. In addition, according to Health Harvard Publishing, potential risk factors include skin reactions, sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, acne, breast swelling or tenderness, or blood clotting.

See also: Does Low Testostosterone Equal Low Mood?


One of the best ways to know more about your testosterone levels is through a test. This can be done with your doctor or from home with an at-home lab test.

LetsGetChecked’s Testosterone Test can measure the amount of testosterone present in your blood with a simple finger prick sample. Online results will be available within 2-5 days and our dedicated medical team will be available to answer any questions you may have during or after the process.

You should consider taking a test if:

  • You are undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy
  • You suffer from Klinefelter syndrome
  • You suffer from type 1 and type 2 diabetes
  • You suffer from hemochromatosis
  • You have a pituitary gland disorder
  • You are obese
  • You suffer from chronic stress
  • You take anabolic steroids
  • You have a family history of low testosterone
  • You suffer from thyroid issues
  • You have kidney or liver disease
  • You have anorexia nervosa

See also: How do you Check Testosterone Levels From Home?



References

  1. Mayo Clinic. Testosterone therapy: Potential benefits and risks as you age. Online: Mayoclinic.org, 2020
  2. Mayo Clinic. Testosterone therapy: Potential benefits and risks as you age. Online: Mayoclinic.org, 2020
  3. Mayo Clinic. Male hypogonadism. Online: Mayoclinic.org, 2019
  4. Harvard Health. A Harvard expert shares his thoughts on testosterone-replacement therapy. Online: Health.harvard.edu, 2009
  5. Mayo Clinic. Male hypogonadism. Online: Mayoclinic.org, 2019