If you've been diagnosed with an abnormally low T, testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) offers a lot of benefits. But there are risks, too.
Here's what you need to know before you start TRT.
Can testosterone replacement therapy make me feel more energetic?
You may notice a drop in body fat and a buildup of muscle mass after TRT.
Are there risks to testosterone replacement therapy?
Yes. TRT has side effects, which may include:
- Acne and oily skin
- Lower sperm count, which can cause infertility
- Increased risk of blood clots
- Shrinkage of the testicles
- Larger breasts
- Increased risk of heart attack and stroke
Should I avoid testosterone replacement therapy if I have certain conditions?
But some studies suggest that men who have been successfully treated for prostate cancer may be candidates for TRT as long as they are closely watched for signs of disease. Before starting TRT, your doctor should assess your risk for prostate cancer.
You might be told by a doctor not to get TRT if you have these conditions, which may be made worse by TRT:
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Severe lower urinary tract symptoms, such as urinary frequency and urgency, associated with an enlarged prostate, or BPH ( benign prostatic hyperplasia)
- Severe congestive heart failure
- Above-normal red blood cell counts
TRT is also not advised to be used for treating those with low testosterone caused by aging.
Can testosterone replacement therapy treat ED?
But ED has many other possible causes. Low testosterone may not be the whole story behind your ED. Talk to your doctor to determine what's at the root of your erection problems.
How do I take testosterone replacement therapy?
TRT comes in several different forms. Each has pros and cons.