Updated: Apr 27, 2020
What are the Symptoms of Low-T?
What is the serum level of testosterone for Low-T?
What are the benefits of Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT)?
The most common reason men want testosterone therapy is to improve sex drive (libido) and improve overall wellbeing. This was documented in a clinical survey recently published in the Journal of Urology. Approximately 35% of men want testosterone therapy because they were tested for Low-T and desired treatment. Simply having Low-T was enough for a man to desire treatment despite not having symptoms. 30% of men desire testosterone for improved energy and sports performance. Most men on testosterone therapy claim to feel the greatest benefit after 3 months. After 3 months the most pronounced symptoms experienced by men are an improvement in daily and social energy, libido and muscle growth.
Testosterone replacement therapy for men has increased significantly worldwide within the last two decades. In 2013 alone, over 2$ billion dollars were spent on testosterone prescriptions. Since 2016, the United States has accounted for 80% of testosterone prescriptions. The majority of men in the United States on testosterone replacement therapy for Low-T are actually receiving the medication off- label. The off-label use of testosterone such as late onset hypogonadism (LOH) or age related low-T and the treatment of androgen levels without a reported diagnosis are the most common reasons testosterone has been prescribed.
Let’s define Low Testosterone: Low-T
There is a difference between Low-T and Testosterone Deficiency. Low-T is simply a number. It is a value of your serum testosterone level measured in nanograms per deciliter (ng/dl). Testosterone deficiency is both a low serum testosterone level accompanied by clinical signs and symptoms. It is important to note that having Low-T but no signs or symptoms does mean you have testosterone deficiency. In other words, simply having Low-T does not necessitate treatment with testosterone unless a man also has symptoms.
What are the Symptoms of Low-T?
The signs and symptoms of Low-T can be divided in Physical, Cognitive, and Sexual categories:
Physical Signs & Symptoms
· Reduced energy and endurance
· Diminished work performance
· Diminished physical performance
· Loss of body hair
· Decreased strength
· Reduced beard growth
· Reduced lean muscle mass
· Losing Muscle
· Weight gain and/or obesity
· Gynecomastia (breast enlargement)
Cognitive Signs & Symptoms
· Depressive symptoms
· Reduced motivation to complete tasks
· Poor concentration
· Irritability personality
Sexual Signs & Symptoms
· Reduced sex drive and desire
· Erectile dysfunction (ED)
· Lack of morning erection
The symptoms of Low-T are very nonspecific. The specificity of the following symptoms representing Low-T is no greater than 25%. The above noted signs and symptoms of Low-T can also be secondary too metabolic syndrome (hypertension, high cholesterol, obesity), hypothyroid, liver dysfunction, multiple medications, liver dysfunction among others.
Do I have Low-T?
The American Urologic Association has defined the cut off for testosterone deficiency as a value less than or equal to 300 ng/dl. Other trials and studies have defined Low-T as having a testosterone level less than or equal to 250ng/dl. A man who has some of the above noted symptoms and testosterone level less than or equal to 300ng/dl, Low-T is diagnosed.
The next step in working up the diagnosis of Low-T, is understanding why a man has Low-T. Aging is a possibility but there are other causes. Does have a man have Low-T because his pituitary gland is not sending the correcting signals to the testicles to make testosterone? Are the testicles receiving the correct signal, but just not producing enough testosterone? Is there something else physiologic going on in the brain? These are the questions every man should know and ask their provider before being prescribed testosterone replacement therapy for Low-T. Understanding why you have Low-T is just as important as the prescription.
What are the benefits of testosterone replacement therapy?
The primary treatment for Low-T is testosterone replacement therapy. Testosterone therapy can include the use of injections, gels, patches, or pellets, though injections and gels are most common.
Testosterone therapy can improve the following symptoms of low-T:
Correcting insulin resistance
Increasing bone and muscle mass
Decreasing subcutaneous fat
Lowering low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, blood glucose, HbA1c, and blood pressure
Increasing high-density lipoprotein cholesterol
Improving erectile function and life parameters (such as increased energy and friendliness, decreased anger and anxiety, etc.)
Improve energy & performance
Reduce daytime fatigue
If you believe you have Low-T and desire testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) call REGENX Health today. A REGENX Health urologist will provide a full and comprehensive workup to find out why you have Low-T and then tailor a medication regiment to best meet your performance desires.