What is Testosterone?
Testosterone is a hormone the body produces mainly in the testicles, which helps to maintain different processes in a man’s body. Some examples are:
- Bone density
- Fat distribution
- Muscle strength and mass
- Facial and body hair
- Red blood cell production
- Sex drive
- Sperm production
As men age, their production of testosterone gradually declines. Low testosterone, also known as hypogonadism, can be from a problem with the testicles or due to malfunction of the hypothalamus or pituitary gland in the brain. In these cases, testosterone replacement is the best option to reduce the symptoms that men can experience. Symptoms that men can experience when they have low testosterone levels include:
- Changes in sexual function–this can range from a reduction in sexual desire, fewer erections, and infertility.
- Changes in sleep–can cause insomnia
- Physical changes–many changes can occur, including an increase in body fat, reduced muscle strength, decreased bone density, swollen and tender breasts, and hair loss.
- Emotional changes – patients can also experience a decrease in motivation, self-confidence, feel sad or depressed, or have trouble remembering or concentrating.
Testosterone replacement is the current treatment for hypogonadism, and it is available in several forms. With help from a doctor, patients can decide which form or replacement will be best form them-patches and gels applied to the skin, injections, or implants.
Side Effects of Testosterone
Most men who undergo replacement therapy report feeling like they have more energy, a boost in sex drive, enhancement in memory, and focus. Listed below are some side effects to know of:
- Increased hematocrit and blood viscosity
- Testicular shrinkage
- Acne/skin reactions
- Reduced male fertility
Human Chorionic Gonadotropin
Several studies have found that low doses of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) can help to solve the testicular shrinkage caused by testosterone replacement therapy. hCG is another hormone in the body that is mainly responsible for fertility and fetal development. In men, it can help to increase the production of testosterone and sperm.
When on testosterone replacement therapy, the body may shut off its production of testosterone. This can lead to shrinking of testicles, and a reduction in fertility. Using hCG can help to keep these things from happening. hCG is an injection that is administered by patients under the skin, (like insulin). It is very effective at treating testicular shrinkage and decreased fertility.
Potential Side Effects
As with any product you put into your body, there may be side effects with taking hCG. These include:
- Pain at the site of injection
- Sensitivity at the site of the injection
Contact us today by calling and making your appointment at the Southern California Center for Anti-Aging if you are interested in finding out if you are a candidate for testosterone therapy.