What is Testosterone Replacement Therapy?
Testosterone is a hormone produced by the human body and it is the cause of several male sexual characteristics and physique. However, the female body also produces it, although in less quantities, because it is involved in the development of muscle bulk, bone growth and the production of red blood cells. When levels of testosterone drop, replacement therapy is required to increase them again, resulting in the restoration of both general and sexual health.
The symptoms of a reduction in testosterone include a low libido, dropping energy levels and a general feeling of lethargy. Depression, anemia and weight gain may also be symptoms and reduction in testosterone levels is often aggravated with aging. The advice of a doctor is vital for you to receive the correct type of testosterone replacement therapy.
The doctor will perform a full medical examination of your biometrics along with a number of laboratory tests. These tests determine if there are any other causes for your symptoms other than a reduction in testosterone. He or she also evaluates your medical and medication history. Understanding your medical history and the reactions of your body to previous medications is important, not just to rule out any other cause of the symptoms, but also to determine what type of testosterone replacement therapy you need.
Types of Testosterone Replacement Therapy
There are a number of different types of testosterone replacement therapy available. Most doctors refuse to administer an oral type of therapy, as it has not been proven to be effective consistently. The two most common types of testosterone replacement therapy are:
CREAMS OR GELS
These are generally the first course of testosterone replacement therapy a doctor prescribes, as they are the most conservative form of treatment. All creams and gels are different and your doctor provides you with full instructions for using them. They are applied directly to dry skin, in shoulders, arms, legs and abdomen, typically at the same hour every day. The side effects of cream and gels may include skin irritation, an extreme increase in red blood cells, increased cholesterol levels and overworking the liver.
Implants are a favored course of treatment because of their convenience. Implant replacement is done once every 4-5 months and there is a lower risk of side effects. The most common side effects are infection and reactions at the site of the implant, just like with any other type of subcutaneous procedure.
These may be advisable if creams and gels do not work. The doctor administers an injection every 10-14 days. The disadvantage of injections is that they involve a much higher risk of an increase in red blood cells, along with an initial feeling of euphoria, which fades gradually before the next injection.
All types of testosterone replacement therapy require regular follow up visits to a doctor and regular blood tests to monitor your liver function, cholesterol and red blood cell levels along with regular screenings for cancer.
Because prostate cancer requires androgens to survive, the doctor carries out a cancer screening before treatment and, if detected, therapy will not go ahead. The treatments contain androgen and may cause cancerous cells to grow and thrive.
With the exception of the application of some gels and creams, a doctor carries out the testosterone replacement therapy at his or own surgery or clinic. Patients can return immediately to work, although some patients who chose to have implants may need an extra day of rest before they can resume normal activities.
As usual with this type of treatments, many health insurance policies don’t cover it, so most people who need it have to pay for it out of their own pocket, even if they are insured.
Bahamas Medical Guide can help you find affordable testosterone replacement therapy in the Bahamas. Please fill out the form on the home page of this site to have a doctor contact you about this procedure and other anti-aging procedures available in the Bahamas.