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There are so many men that suffer from Low T symptoms who would really like to eliminate them but they have concerns about what are the side effects of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). Their concerns stem primarily from the frequently conflicting information that they have managed to gather online and this leaves them not sure what they should believe. So our doctors decided to present the purely medical point of view on this and several other questions that often come up when adults contact us about using a testosterone replenishment program.
Two major factors account for whether a patient receiving Low T therapy will be likely to experience any adverse reactions to it. The first is the type of testosterone they are using; if they are not using the pharmaceutical-grade of this controlled substance, which is bio-identical and thus is used by the body in the same biological manner as naturally produced male hormone, there could be problems. That is why legitimately prescribed TRT always specifies the use of pharmaceutical testosterone medications, whether they are injections, gels or some other form of treatment.
The other main factor is using the incorrect dosage, which is something that frequently occurs to people who are purchasing and using testosterone medications illegally. Dosages that are correctly prescribed and monitor by a knowledgeable TRT medical provider are far less likely to be associated with the occurrence of side effects which can include changes in the prostate; fertility suppression; thickening of the blood; and the enlargement of male breast tissue.
Basically, any concerns people have about what are the side effects of testosterone replacement therapy can be substantially minimized by using an experienced hormone therapy provider who understands the correct dosage to prescribe for each patient.
This is another concern that people have which is going to be determined by whether a person has been using their testosterone treatments correctly or not. While it is certainly valid to wonder what are the side effects of testosterone replacement therapy if or when treatment is stopped, much of the information found on Internet “muscle blogs” and bodybuilding websites pertains to the illegal misuse and abuse of injectable testosterone.
It’s true that the use of bio-identical male hormone typically causes the body to respond by diminishing its natural production. So the concern that many men have is if I stop using therapy, will my body resume producing testosterone on its own? And the answer is yes, but it is going to be a progressive process and the time that it takes will be variable from person to person. Most TRT patients understand that it is a treatment regimen that is probably going to be used for life.
But knowledgeable hormone therapy doctors know how to best transition their patients who need to suspend their use of treatment for one reason or another. However, anyone who is using testosterone illegally or in excessive amounts and stops taking it abruptly is probably going to experience a very rough transition period.
The different delivery methods are not what influence the likelihood of experiencing side effects; it’s the amount that is delivered into your system that can make a difference. Too much testosterone introduced into anyone’s system is ultimately what determines if side effects will occur, and to what level of severity they will be experienced.
Yet the various form of treatment delivery each have their own separate issues. When anyone wants to know what are the side effects of testosterone replacement therapy for people using a prescription gel formulation, issues come into play that are not present when using the injectable form. Gels and creams are easier to administer than some other forms, but they have to applied more frequently – usually daily. Patients using these forms must also use caution not to expose other family members by contact with the area of application.
Pellets are the longest lasting of all the testosterone delivery forms and usually release slowly over the course of several months. They are typically implanted under the patient’s skin through a small incision done in the doctor’s office and are very convenient for patients once they are in place. However, it requires an additional procedure to remove them if treatment must be discontinued for any reason.
Some of the people who ask us whether what are the side effects of testosterone replacement includes sleep apnea are not even sure that they understand what sleep apnea is. So let’s start with that. Sleep apnea is a medical condition whereby a person’s breathing is repeatedly interrupted while they sleep. This cause a lack of the oxygen that is required for deep sleep, and the individual is usually roused by a loud snore or choking sound as breathing is resumed.
It’s a condition that affects as many as 18 million people in the US (as currently estimated by the American Sleep Apnea Association), and having low testosterone levels has been shown to contribute to this health problem. But ironically, the use of medically prescribed testosterone treatments can make the problem even worse.
So anyone who is suffering from sleep apnea should have that condition treated before they can be considered a good candidate for testosterone replacement therapy. Men with Low T also frequently suffer from poor sleep efficiency; repeated awakenings during the night and other sleep disorders that can jeopardize their overall health.
You can find doctors who use TRT for treating their own male hormone deficiency and you can find doctors who are opposed to prescribing it. Yet at the end of the day, it is an accepted medical treatment that is appropriate for some patients to use and inappropriate for others.
Who would be considered medically inappropriate to prescribe this treatment for? Well, as we just noted, adults who suffer from the medical condition of sleep apnea should not use it until or unless they have received medical treatment to address that problem. Anyone who has, within the past 5 years, has either prostate cancer or estrogen-positive breast cancer, should also not be considered as an appropriate candidate for TRT.
But for good candidates who have been wondering what are the side effects of testosterone replacement therapy, the risks are very low when their treatment has been correctly prescribed and is being properly administered. Many doctors and endocrinologists believe that the health benefits of treating Low T do outweigh the risks, given how disruptive and damaging many of its symptoms can be.
However, the risks associated with any treatment are best assessed on an individual patient-by-patient basis; so it is wise to present your specific circumstances and concerns to an experienced TRT provider, like Nexel Medical, before making a final decision about receiving treatment. Your current condition, your personal health history and your goals for treatment are all extremely vital factors in whether or not you are a viable candidate for using bio-identical testosterone replacement therapy.
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