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Effects of Methadone and Androgel on Male Fertility

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Old 12-22-2009, 02:44 PM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2009
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ags1976 HB User
Effects of Methadone and Androgel on Male Fertility

My husband and I are trying to get pregnant. I'm 33 and he's 36. He has chronic pain and is on methadone to help manage it. Several months ago, his doctor put him on Androgel because of low t levels and really downplayed the potential fertility impact.

I recently went to a fertility doctor because I have endometriosis. We started the testing, and they did a semen analysis and found that my husband had zero sperm. We were shocked and as you can imagine devestated. I've done a bit of research on this board and in other places, and it seems like the the androgel is the most likely culprit. I've seen several posts complaining about this issue and haven't seen anything about women getting pregnant while husbands were androgel. It seems like androgel can cause temporary infertility. I know methadone can impact fertility and t-levels, but I've read about women who've gotten pregnant while husbands were on methadone. Does anyone have experience with this happening while husband was on either methadone or androgel?

My fertility doctor wants my husband to go off androgel. But his pain med doctor decided to lower his methadone prescription instead. We really want him to come off the androgel because we think its the culprit that caused the sperm count to go to zero.
We are going to a uroloigst in late January (earliest we could get appt).

Also--I'm thinking about ordering fertility supplements for my husband and myself. Any one have any success with them? Do you think they will help?

Would love folks' opinions and/or suggesetions. We are both really upset and my husband is very depressed, which doesn't help his chronic pain.

Thanks in advance.

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Old 12-27-2009, 10:39 PM   #2
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Location: CA, USA
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Karen128 HB User
Re: Effects of Methadone and Androgel on Male Fertility

Get off the androgel now! Instead he should be taking HCG intramuscular shots 3x/week or possibly Clomid. Your fertility Dr should be able to prescribe these to him. If he can't get a prescription now, it doesn't matter, just get off the gel and let his T get low. With low T he can start making sperm again, but should get on one of the treatments.

My DH has low T and is on 300 hCG 3x/week and it really helped his sperm count and motility. The TRT (androgel) will shrink his testicles and at high levels kill his sperm. Yes, Drs downplay this and prescribe TRT all the time without finding the cause or doing what's healthiest for a person. At lower levels T slows the motility. The hCG, if he responds well to it will help grow back the tissue and make more sperm.

The other issue is to find out exactly what's causing the low T as it could be a pituitary tumor, in which case it can be treated or something else like what my DH has (empty sella syndrome) which can't be treated but is not life threatening. Another option is something is wrong with the testes. If that's the case sometimes high levels of hCG can make enough sperm for an extraction. You do need to be off all hormone meds to do all the bloodwork to find this out.

Here are my suggestions for supplements given to me by my infertility Dr.

You and DH:
one 500 mg V C, two times a day
one 400 IU V E, daily

DH to help with Sperm:
2 g Acetyl L-Carnitine per day
30-60 mg zinc per day
200 mg CoQ10, two times a day

I also took CoQ10 and Royal Jelly which were recommended by my acupuncturist. Acupuncture can be helpful, especially with female fertility and there are traditional Chinese herbs that can help too.

Of course take a prenatal and have your DH take a Multi or possibly a fertility blend. But taking the individual pills at the above doses plus a multi should be good too.

I did IUI with Clomid and one dose Menopur and got a BFP on the first try. Now I'm 7 weeks and crossing my fingers that this one will stick.

Good luck and I hope your DH finds some answers and can manage his chronic pain. Acupuncture could be helpful to him too.

Old 01-25-2010, 10:06 AM   #3
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 2
ags1976 HB User
Re: Effects of Methadone and Androgel on Male Fertility

We finally saw the urologist and he agreed that the androgel is the most likely culprit. He ordered some blood work and another semen analysis in a month. DH has been off androgel completely since beginning of January (and had come off the full dose in December) so hopefully it will start to rebound soon.

One thing, the urologist said that scared us was that sometimes the effects of androgel cannot be reversed. This was terrifying. Has anyone heard of it not being revesred? We are furious at DH's pain doctors for prescribing something they didn't understand. I also think the company that makes Androgel should make it more clear on their website. Its vague about the impact-especially long term And I called the company to complain and the person I spoke to said that they've never done a clinicial study.

Karen 128: Thanks for sharing your story and advice. I really appreciate it. I have a couple of questions that I'd love to ask you privately.

If anyone else has experienced this, I'd love to hear about it. We could use some promising news.

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