There are relatively few men who experience immediate side effects of testosterone treatment, including acne, sleep difficulties, breast swelling or tenderness, or swelling of the ankles. Red blood cell counts could also increase the risk of clotting, so doctors watch for that.
The long-term use of testosterone therapies increases cardiovascular problems, such as heart attacks and strokes, and death from heart disease. The Testosterone in Older Men study was halted in 2010, for example, when early results revealed more heart problems among men on testosterone replacement therapy.
Doctors are also concerned about testosterone injections because testosterone therapy may stimulate the growth of prostate cancer cells. The evidence on this issue is mixed. However, because cancer is so common, doctors are often cautious about prescribing testosterone to patients who may have the disease.
The benefits of trt for men typically outweigh the risks for patients with low blood testosterone levels. Most men, however, decide together with their doctors. This quick-fix might distract men from unknown long-term hazards, but it offers men feeling lousy a chance to feel better. It’s not sure that this will affect your heart disease or prostate cancer risk.
Don’t rush into anything
Men will soon undergo an extensive, definitive hormone treatment trial. Here is what you can do to be cautious about testosterone therapy.
First, take stock of your health
Could fatigue, low sex drive, and other symptoms of low testosterone be caused by something else? Is your diet healthy and balanced? Exercise regularly? How are you sleeping? Do you need hormone replacement treatment?
Did you rule out relationship or psychological issues that could be affecting your sex life if it is not what it used to be?
Consider cardiovascular disease as a potential cause of erectile dysfunction if you suspect low T as the cause of erectile dysfunction.
Assess your situation accurately
Inaccurate or misinterpreted test results can cause a false diagnosis or missed case of testosterone deficiency. The best time to measure your testosterone level is between 7 am and 10 am when it is at its peak. Verify a low reading with a second test on a different day. The amount of testosterone in the body that can exert effects may require multiple measurements and careful interpretation to determine bioavailable testosterone. Consult an endocrinologist for a second opinion.
You should schedule periodic testosterone tests and other lab tests with your physician once you start your therapy to ensure it does not affect your prostate or blood chemistry.
Don’t ignore the risks of testosterone replacement therapy
If you have prostate enlargement causing severe urinary symptoms, or if you have heart disease, a prior heart attack, or multiple risk factors for heart disease, you should proceed with caution when using testosterone therapy. Please ask your doctor how the different formulations of testosterone can cause side effects. There are testosterone injections, gels, and patches. Find out what to do if something goes wrong.
Expect the best
Testosterone therapy does not give you eternal youth. There is no proof that it will surely improve your memory, mental sharpness, or physical fitness to the level of your youth, prevent heart disease or prostate cancer, or make you live longer. You should not expect such benefits from TRT therapy.
Testosterone therapy might not fix erectile dysfunction. You might still feel sexy but not be able to act upon it. Having trouble getting or maintaining erections may also require medication or other forms of therapy.