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Hormone Therapy for Men

Hormone Replacement Therapy for Men

Hormone replacement therapy for men mainly focuses on testosterone levels in the body. As men grow older, their production of testosterone decreases. The peak occurs around 20 years of age. Production of testosterone will typically decrease slowly until the age of 30, and then begin to decrease a bit more rapidly. The average testosterone level for younger men is 650 ng/dl. Adult males with levels below 300 ng/dl are considered to have low testosterone (hypogonadism). Though the decline may be slight at first, it can add up over time. Men who are 75 years old typically have two-thirds the testosterone of men 25 years of age. Though the decline in levels is usually gradual, some men may experience sudden changes.

Levels of Testosterone

A healthy adult male will secrete 8-15 mg of testosterone per day. In addition to current testosterone levels, the daily production of the hormone must be considered. At some point, higher levels of testosterone will have diminishing returns. Men with 350 ng/dl of will have the same sex drive as men with 500 ng/dl. Additionally, the body cannot effectively store excess testosterone. Having excess testosterone can lead to greater conversion to estradiol. Abnormally high estradiol levels can lead to negative side effects.

Signs of Low Testosterone in Men

Low testosterone can lead to many difficult symptoms and ultimately a lower quality of life. These symptoms include:

  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Osteoporosis (weak or brittle bones)
  • Heart disease
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Irritability
  • Depression & anxiety
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Slow wound healing
  • Reduced libido
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Prostate problems
  • Low sperm counts
  • Reduced muscle mass
  • Disturbed sleep or insomnia
  • Impaired blood cell formation
  • Reduced cognitive function

Many people will consider how these symptoms affect their quality of life when looking into testosterone replacement therapy. Many of the symptoms may also be caused by other factors such as poor diet and lack of exercise. It is important to consult with your physician and rule out all other factors before considering testosterone treatment.

Benefits of Testosterone Replacement Therapy

Testosterone replacement therapy has recently become more popular because of the wide range of benefits it can provide. These include:

  • Improvement in libido and sexual function
  • Increased muscle mass and body composition
  • Increased strength and stature
  • Preservation of bone mass
  • Improvement in mood and depression
  • Enhanced cognition, concentration, and memory
  • Improvement in sleep and quality of life
  • Reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes mellitus and metabolic syndrome
  • Possible decrease in cardiovascular risk
  • Lower cholesterol and triglycerides

For hypogonadal men, these benefits may feel essential.

Risks of Testosterone Replacement Therapy

Heart Complications

TRT can stimulate the production of red blood cells. Too many red blood cells can lead to a blood clots. This can lead to an increased risk of heart attack or stroke.

Prostate Cancer

Testosterone can lead to growth in the prostate. If prostate cancer is present, TRT can amplify its production and growth.

Other Side Effects

Other potential side effects include acne, irritated skin, sleep apnea, reduced sperm production, and enlarged breasts.

Reducing Risks of TRT

Testosterone replacement therapy is best when the hormones estradiol and dihydrotestosterone are considered. Studies showing cardiovascular events and myocardial infarctions review TRT treatments that only take into account testosterone. When the hormone replacement therapy monitors levels of estradiol and dihydrotestosterone, “studies show no adverse effects on myocardial infarction risk.” Properly administering TRT by managing levels of estradiol and dihydrotestosterone as well as testosterone can reduce the risk of adverse effects. In general, monitoring and health checkups during TRT are always advised.

How Much Does Hormone Replacement Therapy for Men Cost?

Testosterone replacement therapy can vary in cost depending on insurance and method of implementation. For instance, AndroGel can cost $826 or more for a one-month supply. Troches can be a more affordable alternative. At ClearSpring pharmacy, a one-month supply of testosterone troches starts at $98. This enough supply for one sublingual troche per day of the month. Patients must talk to their health care professionals and insurance in order to find a more exact price.

Testosterone Application Methods

Testosterone is offered in many forms and allows for the client to choose their preference.

  • Injections: previously common method or administering testosterone. This can be hard on the patient as it involves carefully sanitizing the surface and needle before piercing the skin. Injections are intramuscular and usually go in the gluteal muscle.
  • Patches: similar to band aids, these stick to your body and deliver the hormone through the skin. They are meant to be worn at all times and replaced every 24 hours. Patch application should happen around the same time every day.
  • Gels: a cream that is applied directly to the skin by the client. It needs to be applied to areas where the skin is thinner such as the inside of the upper arm and thighs. Patients must be careful not to cross contaminate.
  • Troches: sublingual lozenges that dissolve in the mouth. This is often preferred because it is more convenient, eliminates the risk of cross contaminations, and is easily absorbed by the body. This method quickly increases hormone levels.

Talk to Us About HRT for Men

If you’ve thought about hormone replacement therapy, please feel free to reach out to us! Our pharmacists are knowledgeable and passionate about hormone therapy. This option can be life-changing for many people who are experiencing a lower quality of life through no fault of their own. We can help you decide whether HRT is a good fit. Call our Denver or Littleton location for more information.

You can also text our lines directly:
Littleton: 303-707-1500
Cherry Creek: 303-333-2010

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