Testosterone Replacement Therapy: Your Guide To What To Expect
What Is Testosterone?
Testosterone is a hormone found in humans and other animals. In men, the testicles produce testosterone. Testosterone is also made by women’s ovaries but in much smaller amounts. Secreted by the adrenal glands, testes, and ovaries, testosterone contributes to many aspects of healthy living.
Production of testosterone increases considerably during puberty and then starts to decrease after around age 30. It is usually associated with sex drive and it does play an important part in sperm production. However, it also affects:
- Bone and muscle mass
- The way fat is stored in men’s bodies
- Red blood cell production
- Fat content
- Exercise tolerance
- Psychological status
- Overall well-being
Symptoms Of Low Testosterone In Men
Ask yourself these questions:
- Are you feeling depressed or irritable?
- Have you been struggling with low energy or endurance?
- Are you gaining weight?
- Has your sex drive decreased?
- Are you losing body hair?
These are just a few symptoms of low levels of testosterone (also called low T-levels) one of the many changes our bodies undergo as we grow older.
Low-T Levels In Women
Low-T levels in women can be caused by the removal of the ovaries or diseases of the pituitary, hypothalamus, or adrenal glands. Testosterone replacement therapy can be prescribed for women with low testosterone levels. But still, the effectiveness of improving sexual function or cognitive function for post-menopausal women is not yet clear. Symptoms of low testosterone in women include:
- Thinning hair
- Dry skin
- Lowered sex drive( hypoactive sexual desire disorder–HSDD)
- Loss of muscle mass
- Increase in body fat
- Mood changes (including more anxiety)
- Bone loss and loss of strength
Female Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder (HSDD) And Testosterone
Female hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) may occur in up to one-third of adult women in the United States. The essential indicator of HSDD in females is having deficiency or absence of sexual fantasies and low libido. Low testosterone in women causes a lack of desire for sexual activity caused by distress or difficulty with relationships.
The extent to which testosterone levels provoke HSDD is not well-understood. However, low-T is linked to low sexual desire, and testosterone replacement therapy can help both premenopausal and postmenopausal women.
What Are Some Important Benefits of Testosterone Replacement Therapy?
One of the most important hormones for energy and well-being, testosterone serves as a protection for the body against numerous medical concerns including cardiovascular disease, hypertension, and arthritis. While vital for optimal men’s health, testosterone also plays an important part in women’s health. Supplementing this all-encompassing hormone is a benefit for both men and women.
Improving Quality Of Life With Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
By restoring levels of testosterone, testosterone replacement therapy can help you achieve an improved quality of life. Some benefits of testosterone replacement therapy include mental and physical benefits such as:
- Enhanced feelings of well-being
- Improvements in overall mood
- Increased bone density
- Increased strength and athletic performance
- Improved insulin sensitivity
- Boosts both male & female libido and sexual performance
- Aids in the development of muscle mass
- Encourages heart health
- Helps to prevent osteoporosis
And if that’s not enough, testosterone is also an ideal hormone to increase the production of collagen and elastin in the skin. This helps promote a younger-looking complexion.
Benefits Of Testosterone Therapy
There are many benefits of testosterone therapy. Here’s a breakdown of why people who are experiencing low hormone levels can improve their overall health.
You probably never considered the emotional benefits of testosterone, but it is real. A lower level of testosterone production may impact more than just the physical aspects of your body. However, these physical changes may also impact how you are feeling. As testosterone therapy reduces frustrating effects, it may help you reduce depression and help regulate your moods. You’ll begin to feel like a healthier, happier version of yourself again.
Brain fog and memory loss are frequently associated with a decrease in testosterone production. The loss of this important hormone may also be a factor in feelings of anxiety and depression. Testosterone hormone therapy may help you focus better.
A decline in testosterone has a negative impact on energy levels. A loss of energy may lead to weight gain, loss of muscle mass, joint pain, and more. On the other hand, testosterone therapy may boost your energy levels and immune system, promoting an overall healthier lifestyle.
In addition, studies have shown that there is no greater risk of prostate cancer after HRT. One study suggests that there is a lower risk of prostate cancer after testosterone replacement therapy.
One of the main jobs of testosterone is facilitating a healthy sex drive and promoting sexual function. So a decline in testosterone production may lead to a lower sexual appetite, a decrease in performance, and a loss of sexual satisfaction. But, with the assistance of hormone therapy, some of the sexual health benefits of testosterone therapy may include reducing the effects of erectile dysfunction and rejuvenating sexual wellness.
Testosterone therapy treatments are usually recommended for men who are experiencing andropause, the male equivalent of menopause. Andropause commonly affects men ages 50 and up. And it includes a set of symptoms linked to declining testosterone levels and aging. It’s also referred to as androgen decline in the aging male, late-onset hypogonadism, and low testosterone.
According to Luigi Simone M.D., “Not every man will experience this. But the symptoms are very real. There’s a reason it’s called male menopause. It’s because it can produce many of the same symptoms as female menopause.”
Who Is A Candidate For Testosterone Replacement Therapy?
Any man who is concerned that they may have declining testosterone production levels might be able to get the benefits of testosterone hormone therapy. A consultation with an HRT specialist will help you understand and sort out what you’re experiencing and your treatment options.
What Are The Forms Of Testosterone Used During Hormone Replacement Therapy?
There are several forms of testosterone replacement therapy. And they all can improve testosterone levels. Some of the forms are:
- Transdermal (skin patch): Androderm is a patch worn on the arm or upper body and applied once a day.
- Gels: AndroGel and Testim come in packets of clear gel. The testosterone is absorbed through the skin when you apply the gel once a day.AndroGel, Axiron, and Fortesta come in a pump container that delivers just the amount that has been prescribed. Natesto is a gel that is applied inside the nose.
- Mouth patch: Striant is a tablet that adheres to the upper gums. It is applied twice a day and releases testosterone continuously into the blood through the oral tissues.
- Injections and implants: Testosterone can also be injected directly into the muscles or it can also be implanted in pellet form into the soft tissues. Then it is slowly absorbed into the bloodstream.
So why not just take a pill? It is available but some experts believe oral testosterone can have negative effects on the liver. The other methods bypass the liver and get the testosterone into the blood directly.
How Does TRT Work?
Testosterone replacement therapy uses hormones that mimic those that naturally occur in your body to provide balance to these changing levels. As the hormone levels are balanced, the frustrating complications of testosterone loss may subside.
How Long Does It Take To See The Results Of Testosterone Replacement Therapy?
The same as any other treatment, the testosterone results achieved with treatment will vary for each person and their unique experiences. However, one important thing to remember is that it will take some time to achieve and enjoy noticeable results. You should allow your body some time to absorb the hormones as well as respond to them.
To provide you with the best potential results for you personally, testosterone replacement therapy should be completely tailored to meet your unique needs. The process typically begins with a simple blood draw, providing the basis of analysis of your hormone levels. During your consultation, your experiences, health, concerns, and hormone levels will be discussed. This is all used to develop your personalized treatment plan.
What To Expect After Hormone Therapy
As previously mentioned, the testosterone results from treatment will be gradual, but they are intended to build upon each other. While they will vary for each person, the results should be as follows.
- Increase on sexual interest appears after about 3 weeks and reaches a plateau at about 6 weeks with no further increases after that.
- Improved quality of life become evident within 3-4 weeks, but maximum benefits take longer.
- Effects on depressed mood become detectable after 3-6 weeks with a maximum after 18-30 weeks.
- Increases in red blood cell production are evident at 3 months and peaking at 9-12 months.
- Effects on lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides) appear after 4 weeks; maximum after 6 months.
- Insulin sensitivity may improve within a few days but effects on blood sugar control are evident after 3-12 months.
- Changes in fat mass, lean body mass, and muscle strength can be experienced within 12-15 weeks, stabilize at 6-12 months, but can continue on a small scale over years.
- Effects on bone are already measurable after 6 months and continuing for at least 3 years.
Schedule Your Testosterone Replacement Therapy Consultation With Androgenix
Ready to start your journey with testosterone therapy? Contact us today at Androgenix Advance Health and Wellness Center and schedule a consultation to learn more about the potential test benefits of hormone therapy.
There is no need to feel embarrassed or hesitant. Our professional staff helps many people just like you every day. We are experienced professionals and proud to serve you in North Palm Beach, Florida. We look forward to helping you better understand the potential benefits of hormone replacement therapy and helping you every step of the way. Contact us today to get started!