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Thread: Low T

  1. #1
    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Low T

    Many of us around here watch sporting events on TV and if you do, you'll notice that along with beer, automobiles and car insurance ads are commercials for men to treat their low testosterone. Is this really a medical condition? It's my understanding that male testosterone typically drops dramatically in your 40s and 50s. So if you go to the Dr and he says that your T level is half what it was in your 20s (and that's normal), then is it really a medical condition that warrants intervention? Isn't the Low T industry attempting to get people to think that something is medically wrong in order to make $$? I think men should be careful about this and learn from the mistakes of the past that the female medical field learned.

    A generation ago, everywhere you turned there were post menopausal females taking Premarin (estrogen supplements). The thinking was your body's not making it like it did in the past so now we need to supplement it, not thinking about for how long or what the long term implications might be. Well, now we know that the long term implications might very well be cancer of various female organs, thus today doctors are very careful about who they put on Premarin and they pretty much say that your grandmother had to deal with these change of life issues, you can too. I think men should be well advised to do the same.


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    Tired of talk. Win! Joseph's Avatar
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    Re: Low T

    I am about to start one of these treatments. My doctor advised I was on the borderline of low for my age. Not low compared to what I was at 18 or 20, but low for where I should be now.

    So while your point is a good one, we shouldn't be trying to match what we had as a teen/twenty-something, we should be aware that you can be low for your age bracket.

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    Member cumberlandreds's Avatar
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    Re: Low T

    Low T is a medical condition. I know because I have it. I take Fortesta everyday and it does make a difference. I was in my 40's when I found out which is a normal age. I also have diabetes which is probably a contributing factor. Taking medication does help in energy,mental and the libido. There are risks in every drug you take so it's up to the person if they want to take that risk.
    Last edited by cumberlandreds; 09-15-2013 at 12:14 PM.
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    Joseph (09-15-2013)

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    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Low T

    Quote Originally Posted by Joseph View Post
    I am about to start one of these treatments. My doctor advised I was on the borderline of low for my age. Not low compared to what I was at 18 or 20, but low for where I should be now.

    So while your point is a good one, we shouldn't be trying to match what we had as a teen/twenty-something, we should be aware that you can be low for your age bracket.
    It's definitely a personal decision to be discussed between you and your doctor. Personally I'd base my decision on whether I'm treating an organ damaged by a tumor or whatever or am I just a little low? I would not increase my chances for stroke/cancer just to increase my libido, energy or to raise a "borderline low" number.

    Here are a couple articles that discuss this controversy. I thought the 2nd one was particularly excellent. I encourage anyone interested in this to read it in its entirety:

    ...There are side effects from testosterone treatment, including increased risk for heart disease and some cancers. The evidence for benefits isn't clearcut

    One piece comes from a medical writer who has been directly involved, sometimes as a ghostwriter. The sales of testosterone are being driven by "a sophisticated marketing effort to define low testosterone as a disease for which the treatment is [testosterone-replacement therapy]," Stephen Braun writes. "I know this because, as a professional medical writer, I have helped craft that message for transmission in a range of media to both physicians and consumers."

    Drs. Lisa Schwartz and Steven Woloshin, who work at the Veterans Affairs Outcomes Group and Dartmouth's med school, say the "Low T campaign provides a template for how disease awareness campaigns" are used to boost drug sales. They lower the bar for diagnosis, raise the stakes for intervention and spin the evidence to support that course of action:

    "There are a lot of American men. Some are grumpy. Some are tired. Some may not even be interested in sex at the moment. And all of them are aging. This is the intended audience ... ."
    http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013...atment-for-men

    ...Meaning of "low" and "normal" is unclear: Doctors don't exactly know what "low" is. "Normal" testosterone levels for any age are over 300 nanograms per deciliter. But the healthy range is large and spans between 250 and 1,100 nanograms per deciliter, said Neil Goodman, chairman of the hormone and reproductive medicine committee for the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists.

    "In general, if it's under 200, the guy really has a problem that needs to be worked on," said Goodman, a professor of medicine at the University of Miami. "It's the 200 to 300 range where no one can agree whether the symptoms are related to testosterone," said Goodman.

    (Some men's bodies can't produce enough testosterone because their testes may be damaged or pituitary glands have been destroyed by infections or tumors. Chronic illness, stress, and alcoholism can also cause low testosterone. In these cases, prescription testosterone patches, injections or topical gel can help a man maintain strong muscles and bones and increase his sex drive.)

    Replacement therapy to deal with expected, age-related testosterone decline is unproven: Testosterone therapy is still a "scientifically unproven method" for preventing or relieving the physical and psychological changes that men with age-appropriate testosterone levels experience later in life, according to a report by the Institute of Medicine. The Food and Drug Administration has not approved testosterone use ó or any over-the-counter products ó for those who want to improve their strength, athletic performance, physical appearance or to prevent aging.
    http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2...nt-lab-results

    I'm not an MD by I am in the medical field and I've seen "us" get overly excited about other drugs in the past only to regret it later such as statins and bone density drugs for osteoporosis . It reinforces my disdain for medical advertising by that's another subject.

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    Re: Low T

    I've been amazed at the sheer frequency of Low T advertising over the last 12-18 months too.

    Is Low T relatively new, or has something (legally, medically, etc) changed to seemingly make it an attractive business opportunity (based on said advertising efforts)?

    Is the condition predominantly due to other medical conditions? genetics? social/environmental factors?

    Appreciate any insight. As mentioned, I've marveled at the advertising blitz (which should probably point to its effectiveness), and become curious about the condition itself.

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    Re: Low T

    Testosterone therapy is no where near what it was compared to the hormone therapy that women went through.....they were giving women crazy amounts of the hormone and just hoping they were the correct levels.....with this new phase, or fad, if a man is under the 200 mark, they basically just being him back up to the low number that he should be at for his age. At no point do they try and give a 40 year old man the amount of test to get him to the levels of a 25 year old man like they did with women and estrogen. If your numbers are low, they don't do a thing other than tell you to deal with it......if your under the low level then they try and bring you back up to that "normal" level for a man your age.

    If your below the low level the fire thing they do is try to find out why it's low...if your not honest with your doctor then that's your problem but if your honest they can usually find out why your low and sometimes work with that and get your numbers back to the average level by treating the issue and not giving you testosterone......

    About 50% of men from 35-45 years of age are suffering from low T because they either drink alcohol in a above average capacity, use drugs or take prescription pain medication.....nothing, and I mean nothing will lower your testosterone numbers like opiates....just a few months of taking low doses of opiate pain medication will lower your testosterone levels drastically. So if you take high doses or take low doses for lomger than a few months, your more than likely suffering from a drop in testosterone production.

    There is still so much to learn in this field but it's nothing new....testosterone therapy has been going on for a very long time....it wasn't until the last 10 years when they realized the men who were taking it were experiencing so many other gains than just testosterone levels that they started researching it a little more. Men who were taking testosterone therapy were no longer needing blood pressure medication, no longer needing cialis or Viagra, no longer having trouble with blood glucose levels and men appeared overall healthier than normal....they found out that testosterone wasn't just helping with libido and stopping the loss of muscle mass, it was turning the average man into a healthy man because he now had the stamina so he could work out longer and more often....there were just so many benefits and hardly any side effects that these drug makers got together and realized they had found the next best thing since Viagra.......and sure enough they are marketing it in the same way and its working.

    I have a very close relative who works as a drug researcher and I have spent numerous hours picking his brain about this very topic. Yes they are side effects and yes we don't know the entire downside to it...but this is not similar to estrogen therapy when the ladies were all taking that...that was a new treatment...testosterone treatment has been going on for a long time and we have tons of data on it....but still, there is dp danger with it just as their is danger taking aspirin.....I encourage anyone who might have to deal with low t to spend a good long weekend researching for yourself then on Monday morning start calling around and asking the people who know....most insurance companies have hotline numbers you can call to ask about anything....use them. I do.

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    Backup Catcher (09-25-2013)

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    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Low T

    So what's the gameplan? Do you take T for the rest of your life? Doesn't taking it cause your body o produce even less of it? Seems like a counterproductive treatment to me if that's the case

  11. #8
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    Re: Low T

    The irony of ironies is that those so vehemently against PEDs will eventually be given GH and steroid replacement therapy to improve the quality of their lives as they age.

    Why should humans let muscle mass quietly fade away into the night?
    "This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner

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    Re: Low T

    It's like Viagra....it was never originally designed to treat erectile dysfunction.....it was used to treat blood pressure and it wasn't until everyone that was on told stories about how their libido was that of a 18 year old porn star.....the researchers for the drug companies started telling their superiors that Viagra was being mis-marketed.....and this is exactly what testosterone researchers and even numerous doctors are finding out, treat males that have low T are helping them in way more ways than ever imagined or was ever thought to have helped.....thus leading the new wave in marketing.....and also leading to the numerous commercials of over the counter testosterone boosters...everyone is trying to cash in on the testosterone boom....

    Also, just as with anything that looks to good to be true, testosterone therapy, I am sure has its downsides to some extent....we just don't know yet....like I stated earlier, there is tons of data already out there but now that men are taking this in droves I am sure we will start to hear of other side effects. It's up to the individual to see if the side effect outweighs the positives.....

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    Fil3232 (09-16-2013)

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    Re: Low T

    Quote Originally Posted by Sea Ray View Post
    So what's the gameplan? Do you take T for the rest of your life? Doesn't taking it cause your body o produce even less of it? Seems like a counterproductive treatment to me if that's the case
    Unfortunately no one has an answer to that question yet. There is a lot of studies out there where men have been taking test therapy for the remainder of their lives and they have been happy, and healthy....now that men are taking this therapy in unheard of numbers I am sure we will get more data and more research and money can now be used to help determine just how dangerous it truly is.

    I have heard of some men in their late 70's who have been slowly given testosterone treatment and they have been opened up to an entire new life to live....I asked my dr about it and my levels are on the low side but still normal for my age so we are not going to do anything yet until it drops below the 250 mark which might not be long considering my age and history of surgeries and taking opiates for months at a time after surgery.....but he was telling me of the 77 year old man I mentioned above who was his patient and this man is now seen walking through town and sometimes you see him riding his bike on our towns bike trail...the old fart puts in 5-7 miles a day riding a bike or 2 miles a day walking, whichever he feels like doing. Doc said he see's the guy at the YMCA swimming laps and at times doing using the exercise machines to stretch. The old man truly has the feeling of being young again and he's only been on test for 2 years. Will he live to be 100? No one knows but my doc said the old man was confined to his house because he just didn't have the energy to do anything more than his weekly trip to the grocery store and doctor appointments. I would say his life has been turned around for the better.

    You also have the case that my relative told me about where a 50 year old man was given test treatment and ended up with prostate cancer and is now looking at a life of chemo and fighting for his life....did the test cause the cancer? No one will ever know except for God, but he might have gotten cancer regardless but it sure is a crazy coincidence....

    You truly have to go into it with an open mind and a brain full of your own research...not some doctors research, remember the doc is probably getting a kickback if he prescribes enough of a certain companies drug. I am not saying the dr is going to lie to you but if it were me I would feel better knowing I did my own research and called people that were not affiliated with me or the drug in any such way at all.

    Will you have to take it the rest of your life? Maybe, maybe not....but if its helping you and the side effects are not that bad, what's the problem with taking it your whole life and possibly being 80 years old and still getting out and about and living like you did 30 years prior.

  15. #11
    A Little to the Left Redsfaithful's Avatar
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    Re: Low T

    Aren't there natural ways to increase test levels? I skimmed 4 hour body and I seem to remember a section on it.
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