Over time, "testosterone replacement therapy" has gone from being an obscure phrase nobody ever thought of to become one of the most searched phrases on Google. The boost in popularity and relevance has been in leaps, but this begs the question. Why?
As a variation and a subset of existing Hormone Replacement Therapy, TRT confers and is specifically directed to testosterone and what it entails is improving the level of testosterone in a person by constant application to the bloodstream. Even though no particular threshold denotes low testosterone, the general medical consensus would put a range of 'normal' total testosterone at 300 to 1000 nanograms per deciliter (ng/dL). But frankly, this "range" is widely regarded by hormone replacement specialists as too broad, and does not take age into account. A 20 year old man at 300 ng/dL is quite different than an 80 year old man with total testosterone measured at 300 ng/dL, and may experience classic symptoms of "Low Testosterone," even though he may fall into a "normal" range.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy is a medical protocol that is growing in popularity, designed to restore and/or elevate patients with low testosterone to an optimal, healthy state. It is not intended to elevate testosterone to supra-physiological (and potentially dangerous) levels, but rather to bring the patient's hormone profile to that of a physically fit, active young man.
What are the methods of Testosterone Replacement Therapy?
There are numerous options available for this therapy - ranging from oral and topical to injectable and pellet. Oral therapy methods involve the use of pills and dissolving strips (sublingual), although they are widely discouraged due to speculation that these delivery methods may cause liver complications and vary in efficacy. It should be noted that this depends on application type and even the clinic.
One of more mainstream application methods is the use of topical creams and/or gels. The topical solution is applied to the skin to administer a therapeutic level of testosterone throughout the day. Topical administration is generally considered to be more effective than its oral counterpart, and even though it has commercial success and has been popularized by several pharmaceutical manufacturer's national advertising campaigns, it too has downsides. One disadvantage in particular is the risk of transference of the testosterone via contact with another person. This is certainly problematic if the male patient comes in contact with women and children.
But the most effective, and perhaps, the most popular and widespread delivery method is direct intra-muscular injection. After the injection, the testosterone is released slowly throughout the week into the bloodstream, raising the body's testosterone level to the desired state.
If you have any questions about Testosterone Replacement Therapy, or think you may be suffering from symptoms of low testosterone, please give us a call to schedule a consultation or make an appointment online. We can be reached at (800) 503-4033.