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If you have ever researched Low T online, you have probably discovered that it is referred to as male hypogonadism; androgen deficiency; male sex hormone deficiency; and of course, as testosterone deficiency. Online research can sometimes get confusing; but a question like how do doctors test for low testosterone levels should have a simple and direct answer, shouldn’t it? But often the more people research Low T testing, the more involved the answer – or multiple answers – they find online can be.
While there are accepted medical protocols in place for the testing and treatment of testosterone deficiency, the doctors who have professional expertise in this area of medical practice typically incorporate their own knowledge and experience into those protocols. This allows for them to have the flexibility that is needed to address each patient’s unique physiological factors and therapeutic requirements. In the testing of each patient’s male hormone levels, virtually all doctors are going to start with a simple blood draw test that measures the available amount of this biological substance in their system. Since testosterone levels naturally fluctuate during the day, it will most likely be performed in the morning since that is when a person’s levels are typically at their highest.
Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? Yet this is not the complete answer to how do doctors test for low testosterone levels; the blood test we’ve described provides an accurate measurement of the total amount of male hormone within the system, but there are other blood tests that measure the free, meaning biologically available amount of male hormone. There is a difference; and sometimes doctors need to evaluate both of these quantities. Once it has been established that a condition of testosterone deficiency exists, doctors may recommend additional testing in order to determine its cause. These can include other types of hormone testing if a pituitary abnormality is suspected; genetic DNA testing if an inherited disorder is suspected; and CT or MRI scans if a pituitary tumor is suspected.
A physical examination is integrated into the testing and diagnostic protocols for Low T so that the doctor can look for the outward signs of this condition. Such signs would include changes in the size of the patient’s sexual organs; enlargement of the male breast tissue; loss of body hair; excess abdominal fat; and reduced muscle mass. It is also essential for the doctor to have a complete health history on each patient who is being clinically tested and evaluated for a symptomatic testosterone deficiency.
When compared to the comprehensive and medically correct answer to how do doctors test for low testosterone levels, the use of a DIY test kit for Low T would seem overly simplistic. Now that you are aware of everything that can potentially be involved in having medical testing for androgen deficiency, you might be wondering if an at-home test that tests a person’s saliva rather than blood levels could be useful in detecting Low T. There are a variety of these types of tests that can be purchased without a prescription by anyone who wants to check on their testosterone levels on their own.
But how well can they work if doctors don’t rely on their results and don’t use them? According to the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, it is the variability that has been seen the results produced by saliva tests that makes them unreliable as diagnostic tools. Research has shown that the measurement of testosterone through saliva testing can be affected by how the sample has been collected and stored. Here is how these testing kits typically work: A kit is purchased and the instructions for collecting a saliva sample are included. Once the sample has been collected, it is then packaged and sent to a testing lab using the included packaging. Within week or two, the results of the sample will be sent to the customer.
So what does a person do next with those results? Compared with how do doctors test for low testosterone, a saliva test that doctors don’t use can hardly qualify as a comprehensive diagnosis of Low T. Perhaps these tests might be useful as a preliminary DIY step before having a medically acceptable blood test performed, but if a person is exhibiting a number of the typical symptoms of male hormone deficiency, then it is probably an inefficient and unnecessary step. A man who has been experiencing low energy; a decline in his sex drive; erectile problems; interrupted sleeping patterns; excess belly fat; loss of muscle mass or tone; moodiness or depression; mental fogginess; and hot flashes and/or night sweats should probably go directly to a licensed medical professional for his testing and possible treatment.
There really is no “wrong” type of doctor to use for the testing and treatment of Low T since all licensed medical doctors are legally qualified to prescribe pharmaceutical drugs and controlled substances such as bio-identical testosterone treatments. But there could be a difference in how do doctors test for low testosterone depending on any particular doctor’s own professional training, knowledge and experience. And even though they are legally qualified to provide patients with a medically prescribed TRT program, not all physicians choose to do so. Many primary care physicians are general practitioners who don’t have extensive experience in the treatment of hormone disorders, so they will often refer their patients to specialists whenever it appears to be medically indicated.
The types of doctors that patients will typically be referred to are endocrinologists who specialize in hormone disorders of all types, and urologists who specialize in disorders of the male reproductive system and urinary tract. But increasingly, adults are choosing to use testosterone replacement therapy specialists who usually do not require a referral. This often makes it much faster for people to have their Low T testing procedures completed and if treatment is indicated, it will be prescribed by doctors who specialize in the treatment of this specific type of hormone disorder. It only makes sense that these are the types of doctors who will have the most extensive knowledge of the latest in Low T treatment options, as well as the most extensive experience in prescribing them.
In the past, it has often been a hassle for people not living in major metropolitan areas to see many types of medical specialists whenever the need had arisen; but with today’s online availability of specialized medical practitioners such as Nexel Medical, there are longer any hassles involved in receiving locally accessed Low T testing and treatment regardless of a patient’s geographic location. So how do doctors test for low testosterone levels and provide treatment when their medical practices are located online? By utilizing the unlimited interconnectivity of digital technology respected and highly qualified TRT providers like Nexel Medical are able to bring the specialized medical services to the people who need them wherever they are living.
To learn more about using Nexel Medical for the medical treatment of Low T, simply call or email us today. One of our clinical advisors will be happy to assist you and answer all of your questions.
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