Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
June 04, 2020, 01:46:09 pm

Login with username, password and session length


Members
Stats
  • Total Posts: 754530
  • Total Topics: 63691
  • Online Today: 238
  • Online Ever: 4912
  • (November 13, 2019, 02:56:14 am)
Users Online
Users: 0
Guests: 110
Total: 110

Welcome


Welcome to the POZ Community Forums, a round-the-clock discussion area for people with HIV/AIDS, their friends/family/caregivers, and others concerned about HIV/AIDS.  Click on the links below to browse our various forums; scroll down for a glance at the most recent posts; or join in the conversation yourself by registering on the left side of this page.

Privacy Warning:  Please realize that these forums are open to all, and are fully searchable via Google and other search engines. If you are HIV positive and disclose this in our forums, then it is almost the same thing as telling the whole world (or at least the World Wide Web). If this concerns you, then do not use a username or avatar that are self-identifying in any way. We do not allow the deletion of anything you post in these forums, so think before you post.

  • The information shared in these forums, by moderators and members, is designed to complement, not replace, the relationship between an individual and his/her own physician.

  • All members of these forums are, by default, not considered to be licensed medical providers. If otherwise, users must clearly define themselves as such.

  • Forums members must behave at all times with respect and honesty. Posting guidelines, including time-out and banning policies, have been established by the moderators of these forums. Click here for “Do I Have HIV?” posting guidelines. Click here for posting guidelines pertaining to all other POZ community forums.

  • We ask all forums members to provide references for health/medical/scientific information they provide, when it is not a personal experience being discussed. Please provide hyperlinks with full URLs or full citations of published works not available via the Internet. Additionally, all forums members must post information which are true and correct to their knowledge.

  • Product advertisement—including links; banners; editorial content; and clinical trial, study or survey participation—is strictly prohibited by forums members unless permission has been secured from POZ.

To change forums navigation language settings, click here (members only), Register now

Para cambiar sus preferencias de los foros en español, haz clic aquí (sólo miembros), Regístrate ahora

Finished Reading This? You can collapse this or any other box on this page by clicking the symbol in each box.

Author Topic: Low testosterone  (Read 1371 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Low testosterone
« on: December 22, 2019, 07:22:32 am »
Lately told my andrologist/urologist I'm feeling a "low level" energy and motivation, so he advised to check free-testosterone levels. Did the test today: turns out I have it quite low. My results:

Testosterone (total): 391 ng/dl
Testosterone free: 77 pg/mL (normal range 90-300)
% free Testosterone: 1.97 (normal range 2-4.8)

Doctor suggested a testosterone replacement therapy, since my level is way too low for my age (50). Basically, he suggests a Testosterone injection that should last 3 months and a reevaluation after that. I have been having issues with my testicles since I was a child, so I kind of expected this and I'm worried I will have to continue the injections for good. And they're quite expensive: at the hospital I checked at the injection only is around 420$ (not including the blood test and the doctor fee, which are another 265$)  :-[ I'm pretty sure my insurance won't cover that.

Anyone else with similar issues (low testosterone)

Hugs

Offline Jim Allen

  • Administrator
  • Member
  • Posts: 15,531
  • Twitter @JimAllenDublin
    • HIV Lessons
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2019, 12:17:32 pm »
Don't have any personal experience to add but just wanted to wish you well.
There are a few posts on testosterone if you search the forum that might help.

Quote
I'm worried I will have to continue the injections for good.

Did you express this concern to the doctor?

Best, Jim
HIV 101 - Everything you need to know
HIV 101
Read more about Testing here:
HIV Testing
Read about Treatment-as-Prevention (TasP) here:
HIV TasP
You can read about HIV prevention here:
HIV prevention
Read about PEP and PrEP here
PEP and PrEP

Offline ZachR

  • Member
  • Posts: 72
  • Let's look at the stars again
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2019, 12:18:37 pm »
I don't find your results dangerously or extremely low. Instead I'd opt for a 3-4day/week weight/strength exercise plan if already not exercising and consume more fats like nuts, fish and moderate amounts of animal fat like butter as it will come with some fat-soluble vitamins that are essential for hormone synthesos too if you are on a very low fat diet. HRTs can disrupt the homeostasis of the body further.
Only an idea, you decide yourself.
25.10.19 VL 43
26.05.19  CD4+ 685 %26 VL 55
27.03.19  CD4+ 850 %31 VL 24
***Switched to Biktarvy due to side effects.
25.02.19  CD4+ 740 %30 VL 78
15.01.19  CD4+ 1600(might be wrong) %0.7 VL 54
05.11.18  CD4+ 720 VL 1,100
17.09.18  CD4+ 962 %25 VL 14,000,000 - Started first regimen on Triumeq
15.07.18 - diagnosed, CD4+ 490 %20
20.04.18 - infected

https://ibb.co/X74GV0X

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2019, 08:46:35 pm »
Don't have any personal experience to add but just wanted to wish you well.
There are a few posts on testosterone if you search the forum that might help.

Did you express this concern to the doctor?

Best, Jim

Yes, I did and he said weíd reevaluate the situation in 3 months, after the testosterone shot is supposed to end its effect.

Eventually yesterday, under the pressure of the decision, I accepted to have the shot and now Iím regretting that. It was the first time I saw this urologist and he was ďrecommendedĒ by my hiv dr which I trust. He didnít even examine me, just quickly listened my story and went on with his solution. Didnít even warn me about the huge costs involved which makes me wonder about his honesty now.
In the rush of the moment I made the decision and tried to claim my insurance but I think they will refuse to cover. Moreover I regret my choice to have the shot, I should have taken the time to ponder and weight pros and cons. This dr. really didnít help me to make my decision but I feel he rather pushed me.

Offline Jim Allen

  • Administrator
  • Member
  • Posts: 15,531
  • Twitter @JimAllenDublin
    • HIV Lessons
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2019, 09:00:19 pm »
Hiya,

Sorry to hear that you felt pressured when you were not ready to commit.  That said, it's done now, so I do hope the treatment works well for you and, that the insurance works out.

Perhaps you can see another doctor for the follow-up appointment?
HIV 101 - Everything you need to know
HIV 101
Read more about Testing here:
HIV Testing
Read about Treatment-as-Prevention (TasP) here:
HIV TasP
You can read about HIV prevention here:
HIV prevention
Read about PEP and PrEP here
PEP and PrEP

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2019, 09:02:01 pm »
I don't find your results dangerously or extremely low. Instead I'd opt for a 3-4day/week weight/strength exercise plan if already not exercising and consume more fats like nuts, fish and moderate amounts of animal fat like butter as it will come with some fat-soluble vitamins that are essential for hormone synthesos too if you are on a very low fat diet. HRTs can disrupt the homeostasis of the body further.
Only an idea, you decide yourself.

Thank you for your feedback, really appreciated. As I said above, unfortunately I decided to have the 3 months shot (regrettably made a bad decision for a bunch of reasons). Actually, dr. suggested to add 3/4 days a week of zone II/zone III exercise: he quickly explained those are levels of heart rate but Iím not a fitness geek, so Iím not sure how to do that and especially how to measure my pulse in the meantime. Dr gave very low indications and gave me the impression he was in a rush to end the appointment.
He also advised to increase sleep but I suffer from insomnia and take a stimulant (Bupropion) for my depression which makes insomnia worst. I tend to go to bed late cause I donít feel sleepy.

I used to have a light exercise routine 2 times a week (jogging and swimming) for about 30í until a few weeks ago when I had a back injury and was forced to stop. By the way, I was prescribed Gabapentin for another month by the orthopedic, do you that can affect the testosterone?

Thanks again

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2019, 09:03:31 pm »
Hiya,

Sorry to hear that you felt pressured when you were not ready to commit.  That said, it's done now, so I do hope the treatment works well for you and, that the insurance works out.

Perhaps you can see another doctor for the follow-up appointment?

Thank you very much Jim, that helps. And yes, I will try to find another dr for the future.

Hugs

Offline ZachR

  • Member
  • Posts: 72
  • Let's look at the stars again
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2019, 06:03:09 pm »
I'm pretty sure if you followed your doctor's exercise suggestion + a diet richer in fats you'd quickly fix the testosterone issue and would even have improvements to insomnia and depression. I am actually happy that you have a doctor that validates such good alternatives instead of directly prescribing drugs.
Gabapentin shouldn't affect testosterone, but depression itself and depression treatment are notorious for that. Having had the shot isn't the end of the world though, don't regret, just start doing strength exercises and eating healthy fats, and your body's response will tell your andrologist whether there's a need to continue the shots.
Wish you rapid resolution of the issue and laugh a lot around the holidays now, enjoy every second. :)
PS: You seem to have a really good HIV doctor.
PPS: There are plenty of free exercise apps which provide a large variety of exercise routines and youtube videos which are mostly decent - this is in case you can't afford/can't find or don't want to pay for a coach.

References:
1. https://www.aruplab.com/news/04-18-17
2. https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/547830
3. http://www.priory.com/psych/sexdys.htm
« Last Edit: December 23, 2019, 06:13:15 pm by ZachR »
25.10.19 VL 43
26.05.19  CD4+ 685 %26 VL 55
27.03.19  CD4+ 850 %31 VL 24
***Switched to Biktarvy due to side effects.
25.02.19  CD4+ 740 %30 VL 78
15.01.19  CD4+ 1600(might be wrong) %0.7 VL 54
05.11.18  CD4+ 720 VL 1,100
17.09.18  CD4+ 962 %25 VL 14,000,000 - Started first regimen on Triumeq
15.07.18 - diagnosed, CD4+ 490 %20
20.04.18 - infected

https://ibb.co/X74GV0X

Offline harleymc

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,381
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #8 on: December 23, 2019, 07:25:47 pm »
I do not understand what you mean by 'way too low' you're levels are only marginally outside the normal range.

Do some research on I creasing testosterone naturally. It can. Be done with certain types of exercise and that way you can avoid the supplements Trophying your testes

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #9 on: December 24, 2019, 09:06:30 am »
I'm pretty sure if you followed your doctor's exercise suggestion + a diet richer in fats you'd quickly fix the testosterone issue and would even have improvements to insomnia and depression. I am actually happy that you have a doctor that validates such good alternatives instead of directly prescribing drugs.
Gabapentin shouldn't affect testosterone, but depression itself and depression treatment are notorious for that. Having had the shot isn't the end of the world though, don't regret, just start doing strength exercises and eating healthy fats, and your body's response will tell your andrologist whether there's a need to continue the shots.
Wish you rapid resolution of the issue and laugh a lot around the holidays now, enjoy every second. :)
PS: You seem to have a really good HIV doctor.
PPS: There are plenty of free exercise apps which provide a large variety of exercise routines and youtube videos which are mostly decent - this is in case you can't afford/can't find or don't want to pay for a coach.

References:
1. https://www.aruplab.com/news/04-18-17
2. https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/547830
3. http://www.priory.com/psych/sexdys.htm

Thanks for the cheering words. Iím actually an habitual consumer of cashews, not sure those are among the recommended nuts. I will start to gather info about the best exercises but I have to say even before the news I was already swimming and jogging for an average of 2 times/week since 1 year...
As for the depression unfortunately is a chronic issue dating back to my teens.

Iím taking a bunch of other medications for different conditions, among these statins: I read there might be a link between statins use and low testosterone.

I will gather information and start to plan a strategy.

By the way, have you been dealing with this issue yourself?

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #10 on: December 24, 2019, 09:27:30 am »
I do not understand what you mean by 'way too low' you're levels are only marginally outside the normal range.

Not sure, I will ask the dr. next time (in 3 months I guess): he said for my age 150 pg/mL would be considered ďnormalĒ even if the lower limit is 90...

Quote
Do some research on I creasing testosterone naturally. It can. Be done with certain types of exercise and that way you can avoid the supplements Trophying your testes

I will definitely do. Have you been dealing with his issue yourself?

I surely would prefer not to atrophy my only and one testicle, besides itís already smaller than it should be due to a huge varicocele which went undiagnosed until I was in my teens: It had been growing since I was a child, probably just a little after my other semi-atrophied teste was surgically moved into my scrotum when I was 8 years old (congenital cryptorchidism). When I was 18 I eventually had the varicocele surgery but it was too late, the damage had been done and the testicle hadnít grown normally: I still remember the ďniceď doctor telling my mom that I had the testicle of a 12 years old in front of me. The other one was gone, it didnít survive the previous surgery and completely atrophied, they had to remove it to avoid possible complications (risk of cancer).

From age 8 to 18 nobody thought to take me to an andrologist/urologist to check on me: my mother was too busy with her bipolar depression and suicide attempts and my father was gone, trying to forget the nightmare heíd been living in and forgetting also his sons in the process. As for myself I was too scared that some dr. told me I was not sexually ďnormalĒ to tell someone I may have something wrong.

So goes life.

Hugs
« Last Edit: December 24, 2019, 09:33:00 am by Mindless »

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2020, 11:54:24 pm »
Update

Three weeks into my first testosterone shot I hadnít been feeling nothing special but last days suddenly Iím starting to feel something: increased libido (quite a lot), harder erections and more energy in general.

Still canít do much with the insomnia which was one of the recommendations of the urologist (better/increased sleep).

Other recommendation was exercise targeting heart zone II/III: had to educate myself on that and discovered different heart zones exist depending on how fast the heart is beating during exercise.
I bought a 20$ wrist fitness tracker: first time I went on a run at more or less my usual pace, discovered my heart was running in zone V (max range) the whole time while I was basically doing an easy run (just a little more than jogging). So, second time I slowed down: to keep my heart within zone III limit I had to almost walk rather than jogging... To me thatís not even running itís almost like jogging on the spot. Not even sure what to do to stay in zone II, walking slowly? Resting rate is normal anyways.
Not sure if the issue is my heart (Iím 50 yo) or the 20$ tracker is giving funny  numbers.

I read someone suggests weights training but I never actually did it and not sure how to start. Dr just suggested exercise in zone II/III for at least 30í without interruptions 3/4 times a week, any kind of exercise counts he told me. This is supposed to improve T level somehow.

As for my only teste, it feels like a (small) marshmallow now. I read that replacement T therapy causes body T to shut down and testes to shrink. Iím exercising in the hope that that will get me in the normal T range and wonít have to do more T shots: if not for health reasons, I had to pay more than 400$ to get a 3 months shots, that would be 4/shots a year...



Offline MrHopeful

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
  • Where there is life, there is hope!
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2020, 07:26:41 pm »
I have had low T since 2011 and am fairly knowledgeable about it. Itís important that you find a doc that specializes in male hormones. Most docs have no clue. It took me close to a year to get a treatment protocol that worked well for me. Optimal levels of testosterone are closer to 1000. 391 is damn low. I donít like the long acting esters, too many peaks and valleys, Iíd rather have something smoother. I inject testosterone cypianate once a week. Which works well, Iíve tried pellets, which also work well. Some folks have luck with dermal creams.

Having said that, there are other options, especially if you want to have a sperm count to have kids, in which case, you can take HCG, via sub cutaneous injections, there is also a chance of using hcg to restart your testes.

Iím happy to help answer any questions.
Diagnosed: 2/18/19
Viral Load: 175000
CD4: 330
Started Tirumeq: 4/22/19
5/22/19
Viral Load: 320
CD4:639
8/14/19
Viral Load: Undetectable
9/17/19 Start Biktarvy

Offline MrHopeful

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
  • Where there is life, there is hope!
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #13 on: January 26, 2020, 07:26:54 pm »
I have had low T since 2011 and am fairly knowledgeable about it. Itís important that you find a doc that specializes in male hormones. Most docs have no clue. It took me close to a year to get a treatment protocol that worked well for me. Optimal levels of testosterone are closer to 1000. 391 is damn low. I donít like the long acting esters, too many peaks and valleys, Iíd rather have something smoother. I inject testosterone cypianate once a week. Which works well, Iíve tried pellets, which also work well. Some folks have luck with dermal creams.

Having said that, there are other options, especially if you want to have a sperm count to have kids, in which case, you can take HCG, via sub cutaneous injections, there is also a chance of using hcg to restart your testes.

Iím happy to help answer any questions.
Diagnosed: 2/18/19
Viral Load: 175000
CD4: 330
Started Tirumeq: 4/22/19
5/22/19
Viral Load: 320
CD4:639
8/14/19
Viral Load: Undetectable
9/17/19 Start Biktarvy

Offline Mindless

  • Member
  • Posts: 275
Re: Low testosterone
« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2020, 12:48:17 am »
Update

The sudden increase in libido I felt 6 weeks ago only lived shortly for a week, then I got back to my previous state: itís not that I donít have any desire, I have it, itís just not so intense. Besides, sex is not as ďsatisfyingĒ/interesting as it used to be some years ago.
On the other hand Iím almost 51 yo now, so I guess thatís normal event at some degree but Iíve only lived in my own body, so not sure how it is supposed to be :) (I have a history of important medical issues to my testes)
My testosterone check is scheduled in 4/5 weeks, then Iíll discuss with the urologist based on the results.

I started to exercise regularly 3/4 times a week since about 2 months: I added light weights to the cardio. Iíve lost maybe just only 1 kg or less, I was expecting a little bit more (Iím 175 cm/83 kg), maybe ART is making it more difficult (I take generic Complera)?
Anyways, exercise makes me feel better, especially after the sessions.

The sleep is still disrupted as before: I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night or too early and generally struggle falling asleep. I tried various sleeping pills and main result was awful grogginess the next day. I went back to the psyc and decided o try melatonin for a change. He was not particularly supporting it (offered also Xanax but I declined based on previous experiences) but I wanted something with less side effects. Iíve taken it for about 1 week now and not sure if itís helping or not and I noticed an increase in nightmares that before happened more occasionally. Will try melatonin for some more weeks to see what happens.

Hugs

 


Terms of Membership for these forums
 

© 2020 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved.   terms of use and your privacy
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.