Complete Guide to Calgary Testosterone Replacement Therapy
There are many misconceptions and myths doing rounds in the minds of men regarding testosterone replacement therapy. They are aware of this procedure, but also afraid to undergo TRT because of these misconceptions. This guide is intended to spread awareness about this very important therapy to all men in Calgary whether they are suffering from testosterone deficiency or not.
Do you know this?
- TRT Calgary is a combination of science as well as art. It is dependent as much upon latest knowledge and technology as it does upon the skills of a doctor giving it to a patient. The truth is that not all doctors prove to be good TRT artists.
- If your testosterone level test results declare you as normal, you can judge nothing on the basis of this reading. There is not just total testosterone, but also free and bio available testosterone inside your body. It is the free testosterone in your blood that decides your performance.
- Calgary testosterone replacement therapy should be given not on the basis of the test results, but on the basis of symptoms experienced by the patient. You need this therapy if your libido is down; you are gaining fat and losing muscle and suffering from depression.
- There are multiple ways of receiving a dose of testosterone hormone. This includes gels, injections, crèmes, and even pills and pellets. But the most popular method of TRT in Calgary is injections.
- There are no or very few side effects of this therapy. Men suffering from prostate cancer should stay away from TRT. In some cases, it can lead to thickening of blood, though it is curable.
- There are many benefits of testosterone replacement therapy. Many of these can be experienced within weeks, though some take months to become visible. Your sexual energy may increase pretty soon, but loss of fat and gain of muscle may be experienced in months.
How can you know whether your balls are up to the task or not?
You took a blood test to find out testosterone levels in your body and the test results say a normal reading of 500 mg/dl.
You become happy that testosterone levels in your blood are within the normal range of 200-1100ng/dl. But a normal reading is only the half-truth which hides many things from you.
The fact is that testosterone levels in the blood can go up and down several times in a day. The reading at a particular time of the day means nothing. The correct way of ascertaining the levels of testosterone in your blood is to take an average of the readings taken at different times in a 24-hour period. But no lab would do this much of hard work for you and they will also never reveal the truth behind the inconsistency in testosterone levels in human body. It requires pooling samples of blood taken at different times of the day and then measuring the average testosterone levels to find their accurate quantity in your body. If you are ready to pay thrice or even more and if the lab agrees to your suggestion, it is possible to find the accurate levels of testosterone in your body. Most doctors will make you believe that there is nothing wrong if the reading is normal and that you should be happy and content with the performance of your testicles.
But what if you give samples of blood at different times of the day and the test result still indicates normal reading? They say you have normal testosterone levels, but you know that there is something wrong going on inside you. If your erections have become weak and inconsistent and your energy levels are going down, how could they say you have normal levels of testosterone?
You should take a look from another angle. You never bothered about your testosterone levels when you were in your twenties. Maybe you had 1200ng/dl in those days when you were like a stud. But now that you are in your forty’s and spend the most of your time on Facebook and fishing, your reading has suddenly dropped to 500ng/dl. The only way how the progression (or depletion) in testosterone levels went ahead with the passage of time may be clear had you underwent testosterone level testing over the years. But that is not possible now, right?
SHBG and Estradiol: The other important players
SHBG is a protein that plays a very important role in deciding how much of the testosterone you can freely use. It is a binding glycoprotein that binds up as much as 60% of the testosterone in your blood. The bad news is that the percentage of bound testosterone continues to increase with passing age. This is when SHBG becomes a villain as far as your libido is concerned. You think you have normal levels of testosterone inside your body, not realizing that SHBG is holding up a vast quantity of this testosterone. You are actually at the mercy of this SHBG as your performance in the bed is dependent upon how much testosterone is left behind by SHBG. This is really bad news as you have testosterone in your body, but you cannot use it.
This is why the doctor should be interested in finding out not the total testosterone levels in your body, but the amount that is freely available for use. In addition to bound testosterone, you also have to deal with bioavailable testosterone. It may become perplexed for you, but this knowledge helps your doctor in arriving at the right method of treatment for you. The fact of the matter is that nobody is really bothered about your T levels, leave alone treating your problem.
Finally, you have to contend with another important player in this complex world of testosterones. You may be a man, but your body also has female hormone called estrogen. If the level of estriol, a type of female hormone, goes high, it hampers with the ability of your testosterone to perform like a stud in the bedroom.
Now you know why it is a very tricky proposition to find out the real problem with testosterone levels in the body of a male. No matter what your test results say, you cannot rely on them and it is only your symptoms that tell you the complete story.
Symptoms of low testosterone levels
- You are experiencing low levels of energy
- You have gained body fat without any apparent reason and also cannot get rid of it.
- Does your physique devoid of those bulging muscles and you cannot regain them eve with the best workouts in the gym?
- Your erections have become weaker and far and few in between periods of no erection.
- You have lost interest in female anatomy and love to imagine more about video games, comic books or stamp collecting
- You are suffering from premature aging
- You have a weak memory and experiencing difficulty in concentrating.
- You are experiencing symptoms of depression.
- You have become irritable and lose your temper without any reason.
- You have lost your aggressive touch, whether dealing with men or business matters.
- Do you become nervous very easily?
There is such a long list of symptoms of low T that it is hard for a man to find all of them applying on his case. However, even one or more of these symptoms are enough to consult a doctor and get diagnosed for low T levels. For example, even low anger levels may relate to lower T levels in your body while you may be happy that you have finally mellowed down.
Traditionally, low testosterone levels have been associated with advancing age and not much attention is paid to this problem in the case of a man past the age of 50. But a study conducted in 2006 revealed that nearly 40% of men over the age of 45 suffer from hypogonadism. In another study, it was found that about 13 million men across the country might be suffering from low T levels. Surprisingly, only 10% out of these men bother to be diagnosed and treated for their problem. What is baffling to know that the men who actually get tested and treated for low testosterone levels are those who are clinically found to have lower than normal range of testosterone. What about millions who do nothing after finding that they fall in the normal range of testosterone levels. They continue to suffer from symptoms of low testosterone but cannot do anything because their reports say they are normal. These numbers also ignore the problems of younger men who suffer from symptoms of low T levels but never get tested and treated. These youngsters are ignored as they have not become old even though their problem may be related to high estrogen levels or because of intake of chemicals that are known to be stifling for testicles. Many young men suffer from this problem on account of modern lifestyle full of comforts but low on testosterones.
Experts have concluded that on an average a man of 25 today has roughly half of testosterone levels that his great grandfather had when he was the same age.
The solution lies in right testing at the level of lab
The right approach in dealing with the problem of low testosterone levels based upon symptoms is to find a knowledgeable and skilled doctor. Thankfully, you can find many good Calgary testosterone replacement therapy centers, but you have to contend with the fact that they are in this business to make quick profit. All they are interested in is to carry out diagnostic tests and hand over the lab results to you. This is all the more reason why you should take control of your testing and treatment.
Assuming you have found an experienced and highly skilled doctor, the next step should be to explain to him all your symptoms and also the desire for your treatment. You can tell the doctor that you want to undergo Calgary TRT as you want a solution to your problem. You have to make sure that the tests are carried out in exactly the way that is mentioned below. Here is the list of tests you need to undergo.
- Testosterone, total
- Testosterone, bioavailable
- Testosterone, free
- Estradiol (sensitive assay)
- Steroid Hormone Binding Globulin
- Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH)
- Luteinizing Hormone (LH)
- Dihydrotestosterone (DHT)
- Complete Blood Count (CBC)
- Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA)
- Blood Chemistry Panel
- Metabolic Panel
The results of these tests will provide a reference point to your doctor so that he can choose the right treatment method and then track your progress with the help of further testing in 3-6 months. Continuous testing will also make you aware of any adverse side effects and if the dosage that is being administered to you is right or not.
Multiple choices in terms of Calgary TRT
If you are experiencing symptoms of low testosterone levels or if your tests have reveled deficiency of this hormone in your blood, you would want to undergo TRT. There are many health supplements designed to help people with this problem. However, these supplements bring desired results for younger men trying to build their muscles. These OTC medications are not geared towards older men low on testosterone.
Most doctors believe that Calgary TRT is best provided through injections. Although crèmes containing testosterone adjust better with the flow of hormones in the body, it is injections that provide the best and the most effective results for those desirous of building muscles and improvement in libido. The two most popular options in terms of injections are cypionate and enanthate. Both these injections are wonderful though their half-lives are slightly different. Most patients do well with the problem of low testosterone by taking a dose of 100mg of either of these two esters. Some men may need up to 200mg quantity while some men may shoe desired results with lesser than 100mg per week of these injections. Those who consume more than 200mg of ester per week are those who have bodybuilding objectives. Many men complain of a low when they are given weekly injections. For these men, it is better to take half the quantity on Monday and the other half on Wednesday or Thursday. By splitting the dose of testosterone, these men report constant energy levels throughout the week. This is also perfect for those men who want to undertake hardest parts of their workouts soon after consuming their weekly dose of testosterone. Dose split allows them to continue with their normal workout schedule. There is also a more efficient way of receiving testosterone quantities. It has been found that when injected subcutaneously, 80% of the required dose proves to be as effective as 100% of the dose that is given intramuscularly. Anyone can take a testosterone injection subcutaneously on his own without requiring any help. All you have to do is to pinch your skin and inject the needle into the fold at an angle of 45 degrees or 90 degrees.
There is a general consensus upon the fact that testosterone is received by the body in a more natural way through gels rather than injections. This is because application of gels matches the body rhythm of ebb and flow of hormones. However, there are also many experts who believe that gel therapy is not as effective as TRT through injections. Also, gel can be applied to clean and dry skin only. It is advised to not swim or indulge in physical activities for an hour after applying the gel. This is because the applied gel may be washed away because of sweating. As it is a male hormone, one should refrain from coming into contact with a woman or kids until the gel has been fully absorbed by the body. If Calgary TRT through the application of the gel is your choice, use the gel once or twice a day only.
Other methods of receiving testosterone
Apart from injections and gels, every other method of receiving testosterone is not considered very effective by doctors. These include drops, pellets, and creams. It is not easy to take a controlled dosage when consuming drops and pellets. On the other hand, creams are not easily absorbed by the skin. There is a medical condition called secondary hypogonadism where pituitary gland doesn’t trigger the production of hormones called FSH and LH. These hormones are required for your testicles to release testosterone hormone. This primarily happens because the hypothalamus gland doesn’t tell pituitary to start production of FSH and LH hormones. This condition is treated by doctors by using SERM’s (selective estrogen receptor modulators). Two of the most commonly used SERM’s are Clomid and Nolvadex. These esters encourage the pituitary to produce LH hormones that are necessary for testicles to produce testosterone.
HCG: another twist in the tale
There is no dearth of people who think that TRT causes infertility and shrinkage of the testicles. It is true that sperm count is affected with Calgary TRT but to believe that it hampers with chances of becoming a father is a bit too farfetched. Doctors say that both these side effects, namely shrinkage of balls and reduction in sperm count can be reversed through medication that mainly includes HCG. HCG is a drug containing substances that mimic the working of LH hormone. Once it is administered, your testicles start to produce sperm as well as testosterone. HCG attaches to receptors of LH hormones present all over the body. Men undergoing TRT say they feel good when given HCG. This drug is easily available in pharmacies and it can be administered subcutaneously using a needle. The dosage that is usually given at the start is 1000 iu/day. There are also patients that are administered dosage of 2500-3000 iu twice a week.
Some side effects of Calgary testosterone replacement therapy
There are very few, if any, side effects of TRT. Doctors prohibit patients of prostate cancer from undertaking this therapy even though there is no evidence to conclude that it causes or exacerbates the symptoms of this cancer. They also recommend patients undergoing TRT to have digital rectal examinations regularly to check whether there is any growth of prostate specific antigens. In some cases, TRT can lead to increase in number of red blood cells. This causes thickening of blood, which can be a potential cause of heart attack or stroke. This is why doctors giving TRT suggest keeping track of hematocrit and hemoglobin levels in the blood. Dosage of testosterone has to be adjusted when hemoglobin levels go past 18 or when hematocrit levels exceed 50. There are also fears about gynecomastia among men undergoing TRT. This is a condition where men start to develop breasts like females. But this is a rare condition because of TRT, especially in the case of young men who consume large doses of testosterone (1000-3000mg/week). These men may also experience balding though hair loss stabilizes during the 30’s. Talk about TRT leading to heart attack is absolutely wrong and there is no connection between this therapy and cardiac troubles. All diseases like heart attack, diabetes, and dementia are associated with old age in general and they have nothing to do with TRT.
A little about the results of Calgary TRT
Testosterone is a feel-good hormone that does many cool things to your body. It brings many positive effects out of which some are experienced quickly while some others take longer to be felt.
- Sexual benefits of TRT are the quickest to be experienced. They become visible in 3 weeks and continue to increase until the 20th week, after which they flatten out.
- If depression is a symptom of low testosterone, it usually improves after 3 weeks of undergoing TRT.
- If anxiety and irritability are the symptoms, they start to disappear after 3 weeks of TRT.
- If there is insulin sensitivity, it takes several months to see improvement.
- If lack of ability to develop muscles was one of the symptoms of low testosterone, improvement can be seen in a month of TRT. This benefit continues for more than a year.
- The biggest benefit of TRT is experienced in the form of life enjoyment. This benefit is immeasurable but highly valuable for the patient.