How Is A Testosterone Test Performed
Getting testosterone levels checked requires a simple blood test. The test is usually performed in the morning, when T levels are highest. Sometimes, the test needs to be retaken to confirm the measurements.
Before the test, your doctor may ask you to stop taking any prescriptions that could affect your testosterone levels. Some medications that can artificially increase your testosterone levels include:
- androgen or estrogen therapies
Some medications, including opiates, can artificially decrease your testosterone levels. If youre taking any of the medications above, alert your doctor. Theyll ensure that your testosterone test results are accurate.
Depending on your symptoms, your doctor may also perform a physical examination. If youre male, your doctor may perform a physical if they notice:
- a loss of facial hair
- a loss of height
- signs of gynecomastia, an abnormal increase in breast tissue size
- abnormal weight gain
If youre female, your doctor may perform a physical if they notice:
- abnormal facial acne
- abnormal hair growth on your lips or chin
- abnormal hair thinning or balding on the head
Testosterone home testing kits are widely available from several companies, such as LetsGetChecked and Progene. They use your blood or saliva to test your hormone levels. After taking the test, youll send your sample to a laboratory for testing. You can purchase a test kit online from LetsGetChecked here.
How Is Testosterone Related To Polycystic Ovary Syndrome In Women
Polycystic ovary syndrome is associated with high levels of testosterone in women. Women with polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, experience a hormone imbalance. PCOS affects up to 1 in 10 women between the ages of 15 and 44. Symptoms of PCOS and of a high testosterone level in a woman can include irregular menstrual periods, abnormal amounts of hair on the face or chin, acne, hair loss and male-pattern baldness, weight gain, and more.
How To Lower Testosterone Levels Before A Blood Test
- Thread starterSteve Armstrong
Steve Armstrong said:Last time I received a blood test for testosterone, my levels came back at 391, which is pretty low for my age and lifestyle. However, it’s basically right on the borderline for treatment .If I have to go back for another blood test, I’d like to lower my testosterone levels as much as possible so the doctor can’t say something like “Well, your levels are low, but technically within the normal range, so I have no idea whether treating you would be appropriate” which is essentially what one endo said last time. I’m not looking to be put on TRT, I actually just want to try to raise my levels naturally, but I do want to make sure I am treated next time I go in.I know that low sleep / low calories will do it… anything else I can do?
paarke said:if you tell your doc you feel like shit, are tired and have ZERO libido, and he still doesnt treat you, hes an idiot. 391 might be very low for one person, and perfectly normal for another….if you are symptomatic, its low for you.THe treatment will probably be clomid for a month at 25-50mg ed…if that doesnt work, he will put you on hcg …otherwise its trt
SJA said:I’m not sure what you are searching for, but if your levels are naturally at 391, regardless of age, you are low. Anything below 600 is in the tank. Also, did your doc check your Free testosterone?
How Is Low Testosterone Treated
Low testosterone is treated with testosterone replacement therapy, which can be given in several different ways:
- Intramuscular injections , usually every 10 to 14 days
- Testosterone patches, which are used every day and are applied to different parts of the body, including the buttocks, arms, back, and abdomen
- Testosterone gels that are applied every day to the clean dry skin of the upper back and arms
- Pellets that are implanted under the skin every two months
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Testosterone Deficiency Screening Details
Testosterone level testing is done with a simple finger-stick blood test. Your results letter will indicate your level of testosterone in nanograms per deciliter of blood, and will indicate if your level is abnormal low, normal, or abnormal high. The normal range is 193-836 ng/dL. The results letter will also direct you to seek follow-up screening with your doctor, if necessary. Testosterone levels in the blood can vary significantly, even on the same day, and testosterone production begins to decline in men around the age of 30.2 Low testosterone screening may not indicate that any treatment is necessary, even if the results are lower than normal.
Looking At Treatment Options
If your doctor decides you may benefit from treatment, you will need to decide how to take the testosterone. Health experts do not advise taking it in pill form. That method can cause liver disease. The most common ways to take it are:
You get injections once or twice a month. They can cause because testosterone levels rise and fall quickly. You apply gels or skin patches once a day. Follow all instructions carefully. Both gels and patches can irritate your skin. Talk with your doctor about possible side effects so you can choose the method that’s best for you.
Once you start treatment, you need to see your doctor on a regular basis. You will need blood tests and rectal exams every so often. This is to make sure there’s no evidence of prostate . You doctor also will check your testosterone level every so often. Make sure you store your testosterone replacement safely to prevent accidental exposure to pregnant women or children.
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No Standard Testosterone Range
Now that we know how to test for low testosterone, lets talk about the results. Low testosterone diagnosis occurs when levels drop below 300 nanograms per deciliter . But there has never been a consensus about the exact number. One doctor might wait until your levels drop closer to 200 ng/dL. Another may start you on a testosterone replacement regimen as soon as you get close to 300 ng/dL.
Accuracy is another issue with testosterone testing. You can get different results from the same testosterone labs given at another time. Its estimated that close to a third of men who test for low T levels score in the normal range when they take the test again.
The reason for these discrepancies goes back to the topic of free and attached testosterone. Free testosterone only makes up about 1-2% of your total T levels. But it is ready for your body to use. Only about half of your attached testosterone, the kind attached to albumin, is ready for use like free testosterone. Any of the hormone attached to SHBG isnt usable.
Because testosterone binds so tightly to SHBG, it isnt readily available for the body to use. So its presence might elevate the results of your testosterone test, but it doesnt have an effect on your body.
What Is Testosterone Deficiency
Testosterone deficiency occurs when the body is unable to make enough testosterone. It is sometimes called hypogonadism. Testosterone deficiency can significantly affect a man’s health and quality of life.
Testosterone is the most important sex hormone in men. Its production is controlled by both the brain and the testicles . The body starts to produce testosterone during puberty. From the age of about 30 years, testosterone levels normally start to decrease.
Testosterone is essential for developing and maintaining male characteristics. Testosterone also has effects on sexual function. Low testosterone levels also increase a man’s risk of developing disease of the heart and blood vessels , and increases the risk of early death. A low testosterone level can also significantly reduce a man’s quality of life.
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Talking With Your Doctor About Low Testosterone
After age 30, testosterone levels in men start to go down. That’s normal. By age 60, about 20% of men have . There can be bothersome symptoms of low T, but not all men with low T need treatment. Thats why you should talk with your doctor if you are concerned about low T. Your doctor can make a diagnosis and, together, you can decide if treatment is a good choice for you.
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What Abnormal Results Mean
Certain health conditions, medicines, or injury can lead to low testosterone . Testosterone level also naturally drops with age. Low testosterone can affect sex drive, mood, and the body in men.
- Chronic illness
- The pituitary gland does not produce normal amounts of some or all of its hormones
- Problem with areas of the brain that control hormones
- Low thyroid function
Will My Insurance Cover At
Insurance companies do not typically cover at-home testosterone testing. They will usually require in-office or other types of laboratory testing and generally require a doctors referral if you have symptoms that indicate you may have low testosterone.
However, you may be able to reimburse yourself for your at-home testosterone kit if you have a flexible spending account or a health savings account . Some FSA and HSA programs consider at-home kits, testosterone kits included, as a qualified medical expense and will reimburse the cost. You may want to check with your benefits coordinator or company to determine if you can claim this expense.
You also may wish to contact your insurance company individually if you have circumstances that may keep you from in-person testosterone testing . You may be able to work with your doctor and insurance company to potentially obtain an exemption.
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Is It Hard To Find The Right Doctor For Testosterone Therapy
It does not have to be hard to find a doctor to prescribe testosterone therapy for you. In fact in can be summed up in four easy steps:
Step One Evaluate your symptoms of low-T
Step Two Have a physical exam and your blood tested for your testosterone level
Step Three Evaluate your test results and if you are found to have low-T receive your prescription for testosterone therapy
Step Four Fill your prescription for testosterone therapy and begin an individualized program tailored to your unique needs and lifestyle.
Remember, any kind of doctor can write you a prescription for testosterone therapy. However, it is highly recommended that you only get your testosterone therapy from a medical professional whose practice is dedicated to hormone replacement therapy. Only a well-qualified physician who specializes in hormone replacement therapy, should prescribe your testosterone therapy. This way you can be sure your testosterone therapy will be the safest and most effective for your particular needs and lifestyle.
When you get your HGH Human Growth Hormone therapy from a doctor who specializes in age optimization through hormone replacement, not only will such a physician be able to provide you with the most accurate testing of testosterone levels and provide you with the most effective prescription testosterone treatment, he or she will also be able to evaluate your other hormones.
Blood Tests For Low Testosterone
Measuring testosterone levels can be a bit challenging. Testosterone is not only affected by age, but it can also change within an individual from week or week or from morning until night. It is generally recommended to have blood drawn around 8 a.m. when levels are the highest. Medications, illness, glucose intake, and activity can also affect testosterone levels. For these reasons, you may need to have your levels checked more than once.
The majority of testosterone in the body is bound to a protein, and the small percentage that is not bound is considered free or biologically active. This distinction plays a role in two of the blood tests that are used to measure testosterone levels:
Total testosterone: This is the most commonly used test. Using a small sample of blood that is drawn from a vein, the total amount of testosterone will be measured. Normal males will have 300 to 1,000 ng/dL of testosterone, though this can vary based on the laboratory. Levels under 300 ng/dL are generally classified as low.
Free or bioavailable testosterone: Some doctors may opt for this test as well, under the assumption that free or bioavailable testosterone is what easily enters into the cells and is therefore more significant.
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Is Testosterone Therapy Right For Me
Research on the long-term effects of testosterone therapy is still inconclusive. The biggest takeaway is to only start a testosterone regimen if repeated testing proves you have low T levels.
The biggest benefit of testosterone therapy is a stronger sex drive. Energy levels stayed relatively the same regardless of testosterone use. But men did self-report feeling more energetic.
Talk to your doctor about how to test for low testosterone. Again, 25% of men over 30 struggle with low testosterone. Thankfully, theres a lot you can do about it. And you can start right now. to talk to a doctor about getting tested and/or starting testosterone therapy today.
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Testosterone Test Results For Women And Men
Now that you know the differences between the three lab tests and their normal ranges, what do your test results mean?
The first thing to look at is not the numbers, but the symptoms you are having. Our report: Is it Low T? Know the Signs and Symptoms of Low Testosterone can help you determine if you have symptoms associated with low testosterone. Even if your test results fall in the lower end of the testosterone test results normal scale, you may have Low T if some of the symptoms are present.
Testosterone levels that are too high can also be a problem for some people. Our report: High Testosterone Levels: Is It Bad for You can shed some light on this subject.
Please call Kingsberg Medical at 772-4200 for a free consultation with a hormone specialist to discuss your situation. Diagnostic testing and affordable treatment options are available to men and women throughout the US.
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Ways To Increase Low Testosterone
Testosterone is a sex hormone that your body makes. Normally, men produce more of it than women do. Some men may have low amounts of testosterone. This is known as low T. Your hormone level decreases as you get older. Certain medicines and health conditions may affect it, as well. Examples of this include:
- Cancer treatment, such as chemotherapy.
- Testicular cancer.
- Problem with your nervous system.
Testosterone Therapy For Low Levels
In most cases, men need to have both low levels of testosterone in their blood and several symptoms of low testosterone to go on therapy.
It is possible to have low levels and not experience symptoms. But if you do not have any key symptoms, especially fatigue and sexual dysfunction, which are the most common, it is not recommended you go on the therapy given the uncertainty about long-term safety.
Even if your levels are low and you have symptoms, low-t therapy is not always the first course of action. If your doctor can identify the source for declining levelsfor instance, weight gain or a particular medicationhe or she may first address that problem.
If you and your doctor think testosterone replacement therapy is right for you, there are a variety of delivery methods to consider, as found in the Harvard Special Health Report Men’s Health: Fifty and Forward.
Most men feel improvement in symptoms within four to six weeks of taking testosterone replacement therapy, although changes like increases in muscle mass may take from three to six months.