Address your Low-T. You’re one day away from restoring your best self.
Meet with a practitioner at KOI Wellbeing for a consultation and testing to determine if testosterone replacement therapy is right for you. Book your appointment online today. In most cases your healthcare provider will have your results back within a few days and your prescription for testosterone ready at your followup visit if they believe this therapy will address your issues and health goals.
Low or declining testosterone is a normal part of aging in healthy men, but is Testosterone Replacement therapy (TRT) right for you?
Here is what you need to know about “Low-T” and how replacement therapy works:
In older men, low circulating testosterone is correlated with low muscle strength, decreased sex drive and impotence, weight gain, insulin resistance, moodiness and depression, and poor cognitive performance.
Unlike female menopause, the decline in testosterone levels in men is gradual and there is much variability from person to person. Some men will see a steady and less perceptible drop in testosterone along with low level symptoms. Others will experience a faster decline in testosterone levels and obvious symptoms like inability to hold on to muscle mass no matter how hard they work out and exercise.
Serum testosterone concentrations -your testosterone levels- decline steadily after young adulthood, and by age of 80 the testosterone secretion rate decreases to about half that of a younger man. A simple blood test measures testosterone levels and your KOI Wellbeing practitioner will typically have your results back shortly after your visit and consultation.
Testosterone levels can fluctuate daily and be influenced by medication, lifestyle and diet so your provider may recommend TRT in combination with recommendations for dietary changes and supplements.
Who is a candidate for TRT?
You are a candidate for testosterone replacement therapy if your levels are low enough to need the therapy and your provider believes TRT will raise your levels and restore them to a healthful range without unwanted or adverse effects. Determining whether the treatment is right for you is simple and straightforward, and you can ask whatever questions you want when you meet for your initial consultation and during your followup visit.
Healthcare providers at KOI will typically want to meet with you for 20 to 30 minutes and consider your testosterone levels in conjunction with your lifestyle and any symptoms or related conditions you may have. They will order lab tests specific to your interview and assessment and review your results and treatment plan with you in a comprehensive followup visit.
At KOI, our individualized and tailored approach to Testosterone Replacement Therapy is based on optimizing your bodies systems and functions which support healthy hormonal balance and greater overall health and vitality. You’ll learn about your body and its biochemical individuality- what systems are functioning well and where improvements can be made- and how to optimize your health and vitality in conjunction with testosterone replacement therapy.
Once on testosterone replacement therapy your doctor will test your testosterone levels six weeks later and periodically thereafter to ensure you are benefiting and that your levels are within a healthy range.
Beneficial effects of testosterone replacement therapy on mood and cognition
Studies have shown that low testosterone levels in older men is associated with depression and moodiness (Shores et al 2005) and one respected study, Perry et al (2002), found that 6 weeks of testosterone treatment improved depression scores in men whose depression began after the age of 45.
Higher testosterone levels are associated with better performance in cognitive tests (Barett-Connor et al 2004). Short-term trials in healthy older men with testosterone levels above 300 have shown improvement in verbal and spatial memory (Cherrier et al 2001; Gray et al 2005).
Treating low testosterone in men also improves exercise stamina and decreases exercise-associated ischemia in elderly patients with coronary artery disease and low to normal (English et al 2000) testosterone.
Using Testosterone Replacement Therapy; Injections, Pellets or Topical Cream?
TRT is most often given by either a topical cream application or injection. The most effective method is Pellet Hormone Therapy but this is also far less common because so few practitioners are qualified to prescribe and administer pellets which requires specialized training.
With a topical cream, you spread the daily dose—often the size of a ketchup package—over both upper arms, shoulders, scrotum or thighs. Some people like the ease of applying the topical testosterone gels or creams and of course this is the right choice for you if you are averse to getting shots but there are major downsides to using creams:
With creams there is no way of knowing how much testosterone is being absorbed by your dermis which is the body’s largest organ and, like all organs, has variance in health and function.
Creams also expose those around you to testosterone. If you have or are around children the testosterone will transfer to them and is harmful to their health. Same with transference to your spouse. Therefore creams have to be applied carefully at times when you will not be at risk of exposing others to this powerful hormone.
Injections are typically given into the buttocks from 2 times weekly to once every two weeks depending on what’s prescribed by your doctor and cause no such transference to those around you. They deliver a consistent dose and leave no room for the kind of variance associated with creams.
The downside to injections is the fact that you have to get a shot which can be uncomfortable and also requires managing not just your prescription and refills but also syringes and the inconvenience of needing both your medication and supplies when traveling. Some countries have made testosterone illegal because of its use in blood doping which means you won’t be able to maintain your medication while traveling.
The biggest negative to using both Testosterone creams and injections is their inability to cooperate with and adapt to your body’s changing needs for hormones.
As we become more stressed, or engage in physical activity the body requires more hormones. When we are at rest and when the body has reached hormonal stasis you don’t need the added testosterone. Creams and injections are prescribed steadily resulting in the body’s having too much on some days and perhaps not enough on others. The dose remains thee same while the body is in a state of constant change.
With injections and creams most men feel improvement in symptoms within two to six weeks, although changes like increases in muscle mass and sex drive may take a little longer. The effects vary from person to person but after about 3 months most all men report that their symptoms have improved.
Why Pellet Hormone Therapy Is Best
Pellets are placed just below the skin in a simple 15 minute procedure at our KOI Wellbeing offices. You can return to your day and will experience no more pain than if you were given an injection.
Pellets last 3 to 5 months so you never have to worry about calling in a prescription and waiting for the pharmacist to refill what you need.
You never have to remember to take your medication or be concerned with bringing your medication when traveling, and there is zero chance of exposing those around you to potentially harmful hormones .
Best of all, you will always be in perfect balance and feeling great because pellets deliver a perfect dose of what the body needs, every day. Think of it like a reservoir. The hormones are always there and when your body needs them it can go to the reservoir and fill up like one would fill a glass of water when thirsty. When the body is in balance there is no unnecessary dose causing an imbalance at the other end of the spectrum. And with pellets you’ll begin to feel the positive effects of being in balance and optimized within two days.
What is male testosterone?
Testosterone is the hormone that gives men their manliness. Produced by the testicles, it is responsible for male characteristics like a deep voice, muscular build, and facial hair. Testosterone also fosters the production of red blood cells, and increases bone density. Levels peak by early adulthood and drop as you age—up to 2% per year beginning around age 40. “Normal” levels are between 300 and 1,000 ng/dL but optimally your levels should be over 600. Low testosterone produces several symptoms, such as:
- impotence or changes in sexual desire
- anxiety & irritability
- Low sense of well-being
- less energy
- reduced muscle mass
- weight gain
- hot flashes