As men and women age, we start losing vital hormones. For women, they start losing estrogen around 50, or when menopause begins.
For men, it starts much earlier. Around 30 years old, men’s testosterone production slows down.
Both men and women often turn to hormone replacement therapy to combat the loss. However, there’s some debate about whether HRT is worth the risks.
In this guide, we’re going over what you need to know about hormone therapy for men.
What Are Signs of Low Testosterone?
Losing testosterone is a normal part of aging. But for some men, they lose it faster or in larger amounts than others.
Others suffer from hypogonadism. This is a condition where sex glands don’t produce the correct hormonal levels — or any at all. It’s also referred to as “gonad deficiency,” “low serum testosterone,” or “andropause.”
This affects them from a physical, mental, and sexual standpoint. The dangerous signs of “low T” in men are:
- Declining muscle and bone mass
- Hot flashes
- Increased body fat
- Swollen breasts
- Low self-esteem/confidence
- Trouble concentrating
- Trouble sleeping
- Fewer erections
- Lower libido/sex drive
- Trouble maintaining erections
One of the biggest side effects of low testosterone is having less energy. This is one of the most common reasons men seek hormone replacement therapy.
How Does Hormone Therapy for Men Work?
Companies like https://www.blugenix.com/ and many others work to optimize a man’s hormone levels. There are three common types of hormone therapy for men:
- Semorelin GH
- Testosterone replacement
- Human growth hormone
Millions of men opt for testosterone replacement over other therapies. It’s administered in three ways:
- Intramuscular testosterone injections – A doctor or specialist injects this into the muscles of your buttocks every two to three weeks.
- Testosterone patches – You apply these to your back, arms, buttocks, or abdomen daily.
- Topical testosterone gel – You apply this to your shoulders, arms, or abdomen daily.
Some experts suggest rotating the application areas for the patches. It’s best to follow your doctor’s instructions with the specific patch medication you use.
If you’re on Medicare, check to see what kind of therapy your plan covers. You may also want to consider looking into Medicare supplemental insurance.
What Are the Risks?
The risks of testosterone therapy can get categorized into two groups: short-term use and long-term use.
Short-term use causes minor side effects such as:
- Fluid retention
- Frequent urination
- Swollen ankles
Some of the more severe side effects of short-term HRT for men include:
- Decrease sperm count
- Decreased testicle size
- Enlarged breasts
- Higher cholesterol levels
- Worsening of existing sleep apnea or sleep disorders
Your doctor will also monitor you for high red blood cell counts. This could increase your risk of clotting and high blood pressure.
Long-term testosterone therapy comes with potentially severe risks. The most common is cardiovascular issues. This includes:
- Deaths from heart disease
- Heart attacks
A 2010 study found the cardiac side effects were more frequent and severe in older men. This led to some physicians refusing to refer patients to HRT.
One of the biggest concerns in the long-term use of testosterone therapy is the potential risk of aggressive prostate cancer. Early studies believed there was a link. But, a study in 2018 found there was no conclusive evidence testosterone therapy increased a man’s risk of developing prostate cancer.
Because of the conflicting reports, you should always consult with your doctor before trying any kind of HRT.
Is HRT Right for You?
Only you and your doctor know if HRT is right for you. But, it’s worth noting that hormone therapy for men also has many benefits. Many feel these benefits outweigh the risks.
If you’re taking another form of prescription medication, you may consider using an online pharmacy to save money. Before you place an order, read everything you need to know about Canadian pharmacy scams.