A Pharmacy Partner You Can Rely On
Alto is here to support your journey with hormone replacement therapy. Our team of patient care pharmacists has experience working with the LGBTQ+ community and is available to answer any questions you have about the process.
We also make it as simple as possible to stay on top of your medications, with same-day delivery and mediation management tools like reminders and auto refills in our app. Reach out any time to get started by phone at 1-800-874-5881 or download the app for secure messaging with our care team.
This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
Hormone Therapy Side Effects And How To Manage Them
Many men find the side effects to be worse at the start of hormone therapy for prostate cancer.
But, these adverse effects usually simmer down in a couple of weeks or months.
Their severity and impact vary based on the treatment you receive. Some are a regular occurrence and develop in all cancer patients. Others not so much. They depend on the drug you are taking.
Here, we will take a closer look at the side effects of hormone therapy for prostate cancer. Including the reactions that can happen with the treatment of any other cancer besides that of the prostate.
How Do Testosterone Pellets Work
Testosterone pellets work by emitting a steady, low level of testosterone over a period of several months. A doctor will typically implant the pellets under the skin, or subcutaneously, near the hip or on the buttocks. This procedure is quick and can take place in the doctors office.
First, the doctor will thoroughly clean the area where they plan to implant the pellets. They will then administer a local anesthetic before making a small incision in the skin and using a tool called a trocar to insert about ten pellets.
The pellets should release a steady dose of the hormone for several months following the implantation.
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Hormone Therapy For Prostate Cancer
Roughly 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Around 6 in 10 cases are recorded in patients older than 65. But, rarely in anyone under 40. Based on 2021 reports, there are about 248,530 new prostate cancer cases.
For some prostate cancer patients, hormone therapy is a practical choice for tackling the ailment. According to one report, the survival rate at 10 years in 56 patients with well-differentiated prostate cancer mitigated with primary hormone therapy was 100%.
In 85% 90% of advanced prostate cancer cases, hormonal therapy can diminish the size of the tumor. Good candidates for androgen deprivation therapy are men who already had their prostate cancer removed.
Hormone therapy medicines can be a viable choice for patients looking to boost the effectiveness of surgery as well as for those who already had primary treatment and had their prostate cancer return.
The therapy is here to mitigate advanced prostate cancer and interfere with tumor growth. It might relieve the signs of the affected prostate cancer cells. But, just like any therapy for cancer out there, androgen deprivation can cause adverse reactions.
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What Side Effects Should I Know About For Biote Hormone Replacement
Unfortunately, a steady decline in the hormones estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone is part of the aging process. As hormones decline, a vast number of side effects can negatively impact your health and your overall well-being. Dr. Lily Phillips of Ageless Grace offers BioTE hormone replacement therapy to individuals in the located Murrieta area, as well as the surrounding areas of Temecula, Menifee, Lake Elsinore, and beyond. BioTE® hormone replacement therapy is used to treat symptoms of hormone deficiency to improve your health and your quality of life.
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What Are The Benefits Of Masculinizing Hormone Therapy
Masculinizing hormone therapy can improve your overall well-being by helping to align your physical body with your gender.
Depending on your treatment goals, masculinizing hormone therapy can:
- Allow you to experience gender congruence, a feeling of comfort in your gendered body.
- Improve your psychological well-being and mental health.
- Increase your sexual satisfaction.
How Do I Find Out If I Have Low Testosterone
The only accurate way to detect the condition is to have your doctor measure the amount of testosterone in your blood. Because testosterone levels fluctuate throughout the day, several measurements will need to be taken to detect a deficiency. Doctors prefer, if possible, to test levels early in the morning, when testosterone levels are highest.
Note: Testosterone should only be used by men who have clinical signs and symptoms AND medically documented low testosterone levels.
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What Happens To Testosterone As You Age
In short, it dips. Men over 30 lose between 1 to 1.5 percent of their natural supply of testosterone every year. Its a slow and natural decline, though a decline nonetheless.
So, how does declining testosterone play into aging? Serum testosterone levels mostly drop when your aging testes increasingly become unable to produce enough of the hormone. Your body and brain gradually start to exhibit the effects energy wanes, pounds begin to add on around the midsection, your mind and mood fluctuate more, and your appetite for sex diminishes.
Types Of Hormone Therapy For Men
If your doctor suggests testosterone therapy, several options are available. These include:
- Intramuscular testosterone injections: Your doctor will inject these into the muscles of your buttocks every two to three weeks.
- Testosterone patches: You apply these each day to your back, arms, buttocks, or abdomen. Be sure to rotate the application sites.
- Topical testosterone gel: You apply this each day to your shoulders, arms, or abdomen.
Side effects are a primary drawback of hormone therapy with testosterone. While some of the side effects are relatively minor, others are more serious.
Minor potential side effects of hormone therapy with testosterone include:
- fluid retention
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When Do Men Need Bioidentical Hormone Therapy
It is not uncommon for men to dismiss the signs of hormonal imbalance as normal signs of aging, however men as young as age 30 can experience hormonal imbalance. The symptoms may begin to pile up quickly or accumulate slowly over years. If you notice one or more symptoms such as weight gain, depression, sexual dysfunction, irregular sleep patterns and fatigue, its time to take action.
Hormone Replacement For Men: Pros Cons
Testosterone Replacement May Lower Risk of Heart Disease, Diabetes, Death, but Long-Term Effects Unclear
June 18, 2008 — Testosterone replacement therapy can help older men deficient in the hormone reduce their risks of heart disease, diabetes, and death, according to new research presented this week at ENDO 08, the annual meeting of The Endocrine Society.
”The goal of testosterone treatment is to keep the levels within normal range,” says Farid Saad, director of scientific affairs for Bayer Schering Pharma in Berlin. Saad presented two of the studies at the meeting, held in San Francisco. Bayer Schering Pharma makes several testosterone products.
Low levels of testosterone are common with age, Saad says, occurring in about 18% of 70-year-olds. Low levels of testosterone, he says, are associated with the metabolic syndrome — a cluster of risk factors such as abnormal cholesterol and high blood pressure that boost risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes as well as other risks to health.
In the studies, Saad and his colleagues found that testosterone replacement therapy reduced the metabolic syndrome risk factors and did so in a similar way in all the age ranges studied.
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For Use In Certain Men
Some men with unnaturally low levels of testosterone can benefit from hormone therapy. For example, the condition hypogonadism can cause unnaturally low levels of testosterone. Its a dysfunction of the testicles that prevents the body from producing the right amount of testosterone.
Whats less certain is whether testosterone therapy can benefit healthy men whose testosterone decline is simply caused by aging. This has been a difficult question for researchers to answer. Not many studies have observed the effects of testosterone therapy in men with healthy levels of the hormone. The studies that have were smaller and had unclear results.
Is Natural Male Hrt Better Than Traditional Hrt
Not enough research has been done to state with certainty that one form is better or safer than the other. Some have claimed that there may be potential adverse cardiovascular effects through bioidentical hormones, though a 2015 meta-analysis published by the National Institutes of Health reported there was no direct correlation.
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Influence Of Testosterone On Red Blood Cell Count
Testosterone leads to an increase in hemoglobin by as much as 5-7% through its effect on the production of erythropoietin, which can dramatically improve symptoms of anemia in men.
Studies looking at the occurrence of polycythemia as a negative side-effect in men on testosterone therapy are rare. Despite this, polycythemia is an accepted side-effect of TRT. While testosterone exerts a positive effect in men with baseline anemia, it can lead to polycythemia in over 20% of men treated on TRT. Polycythemia may lead to an increased incidence of vascular events, including stroke, myocardial infarction and deep vein thrombosis with possible pulmonary embolus. While these complications are all possible with polycythemia, their theoretical occurrence has not been demonstrated to occur in men on TRT.
Because of this risk of polycythemia, men undergoing TRT should not only have their complete blood count monitored during their therapy, but should also have a baseline CBC drawn before testosterone therapy is initiated. While on testosterone therapy, if the hematocrit rises greater than 54%, testosterone therapy should be held until the HCT normalizes. If it is restarted after normalization, it should be performed so at a lower dose with continued careful monitoring.
What Side Effects Can Occur With Bioidentical Hormone Therapy
For many men and women suffering from the unwanted symptoms of hormone imbalance, menopause, or andropause, bioidentical hormone replacement therapy can be life-changing. Like all medications, bioidentical hormone therapy has some possible side effects to be aware of, though they are typically mild and temporary. Use this helpful information from the award-winning team at Body Bar MD in Carmel and Terre Haute, IN, under the direction of board-certified physician and wellness expert Dr. Christine Kirkendol Watson , to better understand the potential side effects and benefits of BHRT.
Symptoms Of Hormone Imbalance In Men
Its a fact of life: hormone levels decline as you age. Hormone imbalance in men can occur at any point in the life cycle, but it is most commonly experienced around middle-age when testosterone levels reach a peak point of decline. Though men can experience an imbalance of any number of hormones, low testosterone has the biggest impact on a mans health and quality of life. Symptoms of hormone balance generally begin to occur with greater frequency and intensity when a man reaches middle age. This stage is often referred to as andropause, or more colloquially, the male menopause.
Symptoms of hormone imbalance in men or andropause may include:
Men who are experiencing one or more of these symptoms should consider advanced laboratory testing to assess their hormone levels. Many men dismiss the symptoms as side effects of stress, but in a majority of cases it is low testosterone. Low testosterone can affect a mans quality of life and be a danger to his health. Seeking treatment is the best first step to begin feeling better and improving overall health. Plus, studies have found that adequate testosterone levels are linked to reduced risk of certain diseases.
Systemic Effects Of Testosterone
The systemic effects of TRT may be exacerbated in men with limited cardiovascular reserve. Previous dogma held that androgens could have atherogenic potential. In a randomized, placebo-controlled trial, Basaria et al. reported an increased risk of cardiovascular events in men randomized to TRT however, this small cohort had a high prevalence of chronic disease. Today, current literature suggests that TRT has a neutral to beneficial effect on reported cardiovascular events. Because some men may have a limited cardiovascular capacity, clinicians prescribing TRT must be cautious with respect to its ability to cause edema. Until date, no longitudinal studies examine the impact of TRT on the cardiovascular system, however some studies suggest that TRT may serve as an adjunct rehabilitative therapy in patients with congestive heart failure .
When testosterone reaches supra-therapeutic levels, aggressive behavior and increased rates of suicide among adolescent users have been reported however, no study has documented a negative impact on cognition in men patients receiving TRT. In fact, studies have shown that testosterone replacement to eugonadal levels may improve or stabilize cognitive function. Lower levels of testosterone have a negative impact on spatial and verbal abilities, as well as cognitive function therefore, it is no surprise that normalizing testosterone levels results in cognitive improvements.
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Why Does Hormone Therapy Cause Side Effects
Hormonal therapy is often used to either block hormones that are overdeveloping or stimulate hormones that are lacking.
The two most common forms of HRT are either surgery or medicine. Both carry side effects.
- Surgery Hormones are created naturally in the body by our organs. Surgery may be recommended to actually remove the organ completely to prevent hormones that overproduce and pose a risk of cancer. For example, in men, the testes make testosterone. The testes can be removed to slow the growth of some prostate cancers.
- Medicine Medicines are used to either block or stimulate hormone production. For example, the medicine tamoxifen helps prevent estrogen from stimulating breast cancer growth.
When Hormone Therapy Is Recommended
Hormone therapy is typically given to patients with intermediate- or high-risk prostate cancer. It may be used in the following ways:
- In combination with radiation, mostly for patients with high Gleason scores or other high-risk factors.
- After radiation or surgery when PSA rises, indicating a recurrence.
- As therapy for patients unsuitable for radiation or surgery.
- As therapy for metastatic prostate cancer . It may be given instead of or in combination with chemotherapy.
HT is usually not prescribed for:
- Patients choosing a localized treatment for low-risk prostate cancer
- Low-risk patients preferring to monitor their cancer on an active surveillance program
HT may be an option for patients who are not candidates for surgery, radiation or other localized treatment because of age, pre-existing health conditions or concerns about potential side effects of localized treatments.
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What Types Of Hormone Therapy Are Used For Prostate Cancer
- reducing androgen production by the testicles
- blocking the action of androgens throughout the body
- block androgen production throughout the body
Treatments that reduce androgen production by the testicles are the most commonly used hormone therapies for prostate cancer and the first type of hormone therapy that most men with prostate cancer receive. This form of hormone therapy includes:
Treatments that block the action of androgens in the body are typically used when ADT stops working. Such treatments include:
Treatments that block the production of androgens throughout the body include:
Male Hormone Replacement Therapy And The Side Effects
Testosterone replacement therapy is done to restore the testosterone levels in men. It is referred to as hormone replacement therapy. Testosterone is a hormone in men that is produced in the testicles and helps to maintain sex drive, bone density, facial and body hair, sperm production, fat distribution, and red blood cells production. Testosterone levels are highest during adolescence and early stages of adulthood. The levels decline gradually as men age at around 30-40 years.
Testosterone in men may decline due to two reasons. First, it may be due to health conditions that have an effect on the testicles eg cancer, infection, and injury. The disease that results from low levels of testosterone is called hypogonadism. This condition prevents testosterone production by affecting the testicles and pituitary glands. Secondly, it may be as a result of natural decline as a man ages i.e. when men reach 30, they may start experiencing testosterone reduction. Low testosterone levels are considered normal but to some men, it may be extremely abnormal levels hence require replacement.
· Acne and oily skin
· Reduced sperm production and fertility
· Detection of subclinical cancer
· Obstructive sleep apnea
· Heart attack and heart disease
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What Are Side Effects Associated With Using Testosterone
Side effects of testosterone include:
- Excessive frequency and duration of erection
- Enlarged breasts in men
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Where To Go To Start Biote Hormone Replacement Therapy
If you are living with disruptive symptoms of hormone deficiency and reside in the Southern California area close to Murrieta, CA, call Ageless Grace today to schedule an appointment. Ageless Grace offers a complimentary in-person or virtual consultation. Come prepared with a list of your medical history and current symptoms, and any questions you may have. We look forward to talking with you.
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