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-   -   Androgel Roller coaster update (http://www.healthboards.com/boards/mens-health/545248-androgel-roller-coaster-update.html)

AZMan07 10-21-2007 04:02 PM

Androgel Roller coaster update
 
I'm now beginning my 4th week on Androgel. I feel like I'm on a roller coaster. I printed out the little Progress Tracker from their site and it is easy to see how I am doing on AG.

Of the 21 days, I had 7 days where I had strong erections, although I have early morning erections almost every other day. Desire to use them? I have had 7 days of real strong libido. Although that correlates with the 7 strong erections most but not all, are on the same day. I have had 3 to 4 days where I felt I had abundant energy to do almost anything I want but each time, the following day, I am totally pooped, have no desire to do anything or see anyone. I have had only 3 days that I did not have some form of mild depression. I have had 6 days of somewhat increased sense of "well-being."

I am exercising, alternating walking and running for up to 3 miles every day (something that I am not at all use to doing although I rode my bike a lot several years ago.). I am most successful and less tired on those days where I had abundant energy. Yet, I have gained 5 pounds and it appears to all be in my gut!

It seems like most of the positive effects have come in the last week and a half. Their site says most effects areafter 1 month. Except I have had stronger erections and early morning wood almost from day 1.

I am still in agreement with hayfarmer that I seriously need to get a total E workup off of the AG. The positive effects of AG are pleasant enough that I know there is some hope but it encourages me to keep looking at a low Free T level as my main issue. I really need to narrow it down. My doc is due to call Wednesday but that was scheduled way back when he had me try Clomid that, BTW, was also a roller coaster ride but with un-acceptable side effects. I will relay all this info to him.

If he wants me to increase the AG or does not order E tests, I am going to go off AG myself for a week and order tests from Direct Labs online. I really need to get to the bottom of this and start an effective HRT and get a life!

If the tests show, as I suspect they will, an elevated E and/or SHBG I may 1st try some of the herbal remedies like LJ100 or Vitex, both proported to be effective at increasing Free T by regulating E. I just don't want to do the drugs if I can help it. I'll test again in a month and go from there.

Comments welcome. :)

hayfarmer 10-21-2007 08:52 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
If you go off the Ag for a week and test, I would test for T, LH, prolactin and Estradiol at a minimum. You might also add TSH, FSH, free T and SHGB if you can afford it.

Whatever you do, remember if you stay on androgel too long you may not be able to revive your testicles when you go off it....if that is something you might want to do. Hlow long is too long? Who knows, its different for eveyone.

AZMan07 10-22-2007 08:19 AM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
[QUOTE=hayfarmer;326***4]If you go off the Ag for a week and test, I would test for T, LH, prolactin and Estradiol at a minimum. You might also add TSH, FSH, free T and SHGB if you can afford it. [/QUOTE]

That is my plan. My insurance picks up about 60%. Well 1 week off AG be enough prior to new testing? What about all 3 Estrogens? I want to throw in the Iron tests as well.

[QUOTE=hayfarmer;326***4]Whatever you do, remember if you stay on androgel too long you may not be able to revive your testicles when you go off it....if that is something you might want to do. How long is too long? Who knows, its different for everyone.[/QUOTE]

So, it totally kills the HPTA?
That is true for any type of TRT, unless we take something like HCG with it, right?

Ever heard of LJ100 or Vitex as alternatives for HCG?

Bengie 10-22-2007 09:04 AM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
Wish my doc had told me about HCG two years ago when I started TRT. (bothered me for a bit but I'm over it)

Jinxy285 10-22-2007 09:46 AM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
LJ100 and VItex!!! LJ 100 is Long Jack, supposedly creates more free T, all it ever did for me was make me ****** off all the time! Vitex is supposed to lower prolactin which will usually create more T, as prolactin is a T inhibitor. That is why you should have your prolactin checked, it could be the cause in itself of your Low T and simply treating that will fix your problem without TRT. Also consider horny goat weed....I have be on AG for almost 2 years and I supplement with HGW, DIM and 6oxo, along with zinc, B12 and Vit C...and to the best of my knowledge, and what the Endo told me a couple months back, my testicles are still normal size.... I believe very strongly from my trial and error about using supplements with TRT... but a good rule of thumb is try one thing for a couple weeks and write down if you feel better or worse or nothing and then add something or replace the first thing with something else. also, every 6 - 8 weeks take a one or two week break from herbal supplements...you body will build a tolerance and they will stop working.... I have been using AG and supplements and have pretty good libido and energy most of the time... TRT is not a miracle, you are not going to start feeling like you are 25... age is still a ***** and you are going to have good and bad days, just like I am sure you did before you had hormone problems... dont think sticking something in your butt is going to be the fountain of youth... everyone is differant and it takes work to figure out what works for you....

good luck.

AZMan07 10-22-2007 10:17 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
[QUOTE=Bengie;3269435]Wish my doc had told me about HCG two years ago when I started TRT. (bothered me for a bit but I'm over it)[/QUOTE]
Are you taking both?

AZMan07 10-22-2007 10:35 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
[QUOTE=Jinxy285;3269522]LJ100 and VItex!!! LJ 100 is Long Jack, supposedly creates more free T, all it ever did for me was make me ****** off all the time! Vitex is supposed to lower prolactin which will usually create more T, as prolactin is a T inhibitor. That is why you should have your prolactin checked, it could be the cause in itself of your Low T and simply treating that will fix your problem without TRT. Also consider horny goat weed....I have be on AG for almost 2 years and I supplement with HGW, DIM and 6oxo, along with zinc, B12 and Vit C...and to the best of my knowledge, and what the Endo told me a couple months back, my testicles are still normal size.... I believe very strongly from my trial and error about using supplements with TRT... but a good rule of thumb is try one thing for a couple weeks and write down if you feel better or worse or nothing and then add something or replace the first thing with something else. also, every 6 - 8 weeks take a one or two week break from herbal supplements...you body will build a tolerance and they will stop working.... I have been using AG and supplements and have pretty good libido and energy most of the time... TRT is not a miracle, you are not going to start feeling like you are 25... age is still a ***** and you are going to have good and bad days, just like I am sure you did before you had hormone problems... dont think sticking something in your butt is going to be the fountain of youth... everyone is differant and it takes work to figure out what works for you....

good luck.[/QUOTE]

Certainly good advise here. I will usually go the supplement route before any other route. It seems my supplementation, however, was not sufficient for me and my Free T just got lower and lower and that is why I am checking out other things. However, I know that some things work for some people and some things don't and not everyone will have the same results with the same supplement. For example, many swear by Glucosamine and Chondroitin but they did absolutely nothing for me. I have tried both Horny goat Weed as well as Trib and I had the same reaction with those as you had with Long Jack. With herbs, I think it depends a lot on the quality. It's real hard to tell whether or not you are getting crap.

As for DIM, have you had any issue like excessive gas from the cruciferous vegetables? I get plenty of Zinc, B-12 and C.

The reasons I started investigating whether or not I had other medical options were my fits of rage coming out of nowhere, a steadily increasing depression as well as no libido and weak erections. From what I've seen from the AG, I think it is possible to have "regular days" instead of those I had before I started looking at other options.

I am certainly human and realize that life is not all a bed or roses but I am also an experimentalist and I will keep experimenting until I find what works best to minimize my symptoms . :)

Jinxy285 10-22-2007 11:09 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
Keep in mind that the anger you exp could simply be hormone imbalance, ie high E2 to T or DHT to T. I have always been of the mind that high DHT is what causes anger, ie roid rage type symptoms..along with acne and hair loss.... keep plugin along...and no....DIM never caused me any gas......

AZMan07 10-23-2007 07:10 AM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
[QUOTE=Jinxy285;3270899]Keep in mind that the anger you exp could simply be hormone imbalance, ie high E2 to T or DHT to T. I have always been of the mind that high DHT is what causes anger, ie roid rage type symptoms..along with acne and hair loss.... keep plugin along...and no....DIM never caused me any gas......[/QUOTE]
Would that be to Total or Free T?
Yes, and 2 months ago I was close to the high limit on both:
Free 1.20 (Low) (1.5-2.2)
Estradiol 32 pg/ml (8-43)
DHT 57 ng/dl (25-75)

Bengie 10-23-2007 01:15 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
[QUOTE=AZMan07;3270841]Are you taking both?[/QUOTE]

nope. the only reason to take the HCG is to keep the boys from shrinking. well, its been two years since I went on TRT and problably a year before taht where nothing was working, and I dont think taking the injections would turn anything around now. I can live with the smaller boys ( not abnormally small just a lot smaller then they were. shrug)

Jinxy285 10-23-2007 02:03 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
[QUOTE=AZMan07;3271212]Would that be to Total or Free T?
Yes, and 2 months ago I was close to the high limit on both:
Free 1.20 (Low) (1.5-2.2)
Estradiol 32 pg/ml (8-43)
DHT 57 ng/dl (25-75)[/QUOTE]

Total T...

hayfarmer 10-23-2007 09:15 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
AZman, to answer your questions to me a couple pages back. The usual tests for estrogen is to check estradiol and sometimes also total estrogen. The total estrogen will get them all but checking estradiol separately is important because it is by far the most potent form of estrogen.

The Androgel does not necessary damage the HPTA. What can happen though is your testicles will atrophy after not being stimulated with LH for a period of time. As more time goes by they will shrink just like a muscle you never use would shrink. Unlike a muscle though for many men they will not come back when you start to stimulate them again with LH or HCG if too much time has passed and the atrophy is too severe. That is what I was talking about.

Technically the androgel will shut down the HPTA also but that is another subject and most likely if you have secondary hypogonadism your HPTA is broken anyway. My point was if your testicles are working and the only problem is in the HPTA, the HCG will keep the testicles working whereas by taking TRT by itself you may end up eventually with both a broken HPTA and testicles that can't do anything.

AZMan07 11-01-2007 07:11 AM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
I very much appreciate all the support you guys give, you are great! :angel:

Today I stop AG. The roller coaster continued for a month, always an occasional good day thrown in with all the bad. Basically, I am the same as before starting AG.

My question, is just 1 week off of AG going to be enough before I due a total retest (including SHBG, LH, FSH, TT, FT, All 3 estrogens, progesterone, cortisol, iron,etc.)?

P.S. I am doing the saliva tomorrow (Estradiol (E2), Progesterone (Pg), Testosterone (T), DHEA-S, and 4 Cortisols) as I had already paid for that and I am curious as to how accurate it will be.

AZMan07 11-02-2007 08:58 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
oops, I just read in the circular that came with AG that when you stop using it, T levels are back at pre-AG levels on the 5th day! So, I will be doing my blood tests Tue.:)

hayfarmer 11-03-2007 08:17 PM

Re: Androgel Roller coaster update
 
Right. One week should do it.


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