Testosterone Therapy in Indianapolis, IN
For many years, testosterone therapy has been available to treat men who suffered an injury to the testicles, as well as those who were born with a condition that impaired their hormone levels. Testosterone is a naturally occurring hormone that is essential for male health and wellness. Some men may not produce enough testosterone, a condition known as testosterone deficiency (TD), which can cause adverse symptoms that negatively affect their quality of life. Although not all men with TD report these symptoms, many men report:
- Low energy
- Decreased sex drive
- Depression and/or anxiety
- Poor sleep quality
- Poor mental focus
- Fat gain
- Loss of muscle mass
- Loss of bone density
Although not guaranteed, restoring men’s testosterone levels back to a normal range with testosterone therapy may improve some or all these symptoms. It’s important to note that many of these symptoms are not unique to TD and may be caused by other medical conditions or a man’s general physical condition. If a patient’s low testosterone is the result of another medical condition, it can be very beneficial to begin treating that original condition to see if hormone levels improve. For those who suffer from irreversible low testosterone, there is testosterone therapy.
The board-certified urologist at Urology of Indiana provide comprehensive testing and treatment for low testosterone at our urology clinics in Indianapolis. Our staff will take the time to answer any questions you may have and help discover if low testosterone therapy is right for you. For more information, contact our urology clinic at (877) 362-2778 and schedule an appointment today!
What Are the Types of Testosterone Therapy?
This treatment method involves administering controlled amounts of the testosterone hormone to the body in order to replace what the body is unable to naturally produce. Patients of Dr. Tatem may select any one of the following options when deciding which particular type of testosterone therapy is best for them:
- Hormone Replacement Pellets: These pellets are implanted just beneath the skin and are able to slowly deliver a steady amount of testosterone to the body over the course of several weeks.
- Injections: Our urologists can also directly inject testosterone hormone into the patient’s body. Many patients often complete these injections on their own at home every 10-14 days as well.
- Gels: Topical gels may also be used to directly apply testosterone onto the skin, which is then absorbed by the body. These gels are typically used once per day.
Patches: Similar to the topical gel, a testosterone skin patch may be administered to the skin once a day in order to be absorbed gradually by the body.
- Oral Tablet: There is also a tablet form available that is applied to the upper gums twice a day. The testosterone is then absorbed through the mouth, which eliminates and visible signs of the individual’s testosterone therapy treatments.
What are the Risks of Testosterone Therapy?
Although testosterone therapy is generally considered to be safe, it does carry potential side effects that patients should be aware of.
- Testosterone may cause an elevation in a man’s hematocrit, which is a measure of blood thickness. This may require some men to donate blood intermittently. Some men may require further evaluation by a separate specialist known as a hematologist who can evaluate for other underlying blood disorders. Although rare, men who develop an elevated hematocrit and are not compliant with regular monitoring and treatment may be at an increased risk for heart attack or stroke.
- Patients should know that there is significant debate regarding testosterone therapy and cardiac risk. Although it is unclear whether testosterone replacement therapy elevates a man’s cardiac risk, there is significant evidence showing that untreated testosterone deficiency elevates a man’s risk for cardiovascular disease.
- Patients should know that there is the relationship between testosterone and the prostate is complex. There is no evidence that testosterone replacement therapy causes prostate cancer. That being said, regular prostate cancer screening is important for all men as part of regular wellness checks.
- Although extremely rare in men, testosterone may affect breast cancer progression.
- Men who have low testosterone are at risk for a condition known as obstructive sleep apnea. Testosterone replacement may actually aggravate this condition in some men.
- Patients should be aware that certain forms of testosterone replacement therapy may lower sperm counts, possibly to the point of infertility. Testosterone may also cause a man’s testicles to decrease in size. These effects may be temporary or permanent. Although different strategies can be utilized to reduce these risks, success cannot be guaranteed.
- Testosterone replacement may accelerate hair loss in some men who are genetically prone to this.
- Topical forms of testosterone, like cream or gels, carry the risk of skin-to-skin transmission to other people following application.
- Testosterone replacement therapy may inhibit a man’s ability to make his own natural testosterone later. As with fertility and testicular size, there are strategies to reduce this risk, but success cannot be guaranteed. As a result, certain forms of testosterone therapy carry the risk of dependence.
How is Testosterone Therapy Monitored?
Due to the potential side effects mentioned above, testosterone therapy requires close monitoring and regular office visits. Because testosterone also carries the risk for abuse, it is considered a controlled substance by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). It is under strict control by the government.
Schedule a Consultation for Low Testosterone Therapy in Indianapolis
If you are currently experiencing symptoms of low testosterone the first step to managing your symptoms is to schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified urologist and discuss your options with them. To schedule an appointment Dr. Tatem, please call Urology of Indiana today at (877) 362-2778.