The Pros and Cons of Testosterone Therapy

Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is widely used for treating symptomatic hypogonadism in men. Learn about its potential benefits & risks.

The Pros and Cons of Testosterone Therapy

Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is a widely used treatment for men with symptomatic hypogonadism. The benefits seen with TRT, such as increased libido and energy levels, beneficial effects on bone density, strength and muscles, as well as cardioprotective effects, are well documented. However, there are some potential downsides to testosterone therapy that should be taken into consideration. These include the potential to cause acne or other skin reactions, stimulate non-cancerous prostate growth (benign prostatic hyperplasia) and the growth of existing prostate cancer.

TRT is contraindicated in men with untreated prostate and breast cancer. Men receiving TRT should be monitored for side effects such as polycythemia, peripheral oedema, and heart and liver dysfunction. Testosterone patches tend to be easier to apply than testosterone gels and decrease the risk of accidental testosterone transfer to women or children. Because TRT is known to cause fluid retention, caution is often advised with the use of testosterone in patients with chronic renal failure. Compared to other forms of testosterone, it has a slow release rate after injection and a longer half-life.

They can ensure that you get the tests you need to determine if your symptoms are related to your testosterone levels or are caused by something else. Testosterone has many beneficial effects, such as increasing bone strength and density, inducing hematopoiesis, boosting sexual function and libido, providing a cardioprotective effect, and increasing muscle strength. Although the relationship isn't clear, studies have shown that diet and exercise increase testosterone levels as much as artificial injections. When serum testosterone levels increase, there is a simultaneous increase in sebum secretion, which can lead to acne. They can also help you analyze the advantages and disadvantages of testosterone therapy for your individual situation and decide if you're a good candidate based on your symptoms, goals and health status. Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of testosterone replacement therapy to maximize your benefits and minimize risks. When you fall below that number, you are considered to have low testosterone levels and you may begin to notice physical and emotional changes.

Because of this risk of polycythemia, men who undergo TRT should not only have their complete blood count (CBC) checked during treatment, but a baseline blood count should also be taken before starting testosterone treatment. So what are the signs of low testosterone? They include low sexual desire, fatigue, loss of muscle mass, decreased bone mass, increased body fat, and mood swings, including irritability or lack of concentration. Studies that analyze the occurrence of polycythemia as a negative side effect in men receiving testosterone treatment are rare. The number of men taking testosterone has fallen dramatically in recent years, in part due to a growing awareness of the risks it can entail. While older men receiving testosterone therapy have an increase in overall prostate size, this increase in size is no different from the increase in prostatic hypertrophy seen in older men who do not receive testosterone therapy.

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