What do you make of something you probably had never heard of until the last couple of years, but somebody is now saying you need? Here you are, a grown adult, you go to the doctor when you need to, you pay attention to your health (more or less), and you don’t expect to feel like you are twenty years old when you are in fact…”slightly” older than that. However, the ads all tell you something is wrong.
Now, all of the sudden, everywhere you turn somebody is bending you ear about Low T. Is it Low T? Do you know your number? Are you just getting old or is your testosterone low? These are common questions you will see pop up on your screen if you search for anything related to testosterone replacement therapy (TRT).
Is Low T Real or Just a Popular Myth?
Along with the 1.6 Billion+ search results listed when you search for “Low T”, you will be led to almost as many opinions. Many articles on the subject chronicle the debate over whether this is an “invented” disease or something of substance. THIS USAToday.com article lines out some well thought out debates on both sides of the argument.
In short, testosterone replacement is BOTH popular and prevalent. Simply because something is common, that does not make it normal. Cancer is common, thyroid disease is common, diabetes is common…but none of these are normal physiologic states.
Just as with thyroid disorders, once you dip below a certain threshold, it is veritably impossible for you to naturally just start making more of what your thyroid gland was made to produce. It creates a disease state that necessitates treatment. Now, in all fairness, you can live with low testosterone, but the prevalence of Low T does not make it normal.
Both Sides of the Low T Debate
The facts remain. Studies show that on average, men today have testosterone levels that are 22% lower than their counterparts from just twenty to thirty years ago. The studies, reviewed honestly and in totality, overwhelmingly support the benefits of TRT when used under the right pretenses. For patients whom are both suffering from symptoms of Low T, and have levels that are documented as legitimately low, testosterone replacement can be life changing in a very positive way.
On the other hand, when no physical exam is performed, when no medical interview is conducted, and when no lab studies are ordered to first confirm the condition, testosterone replacement therapy should NOT be initiated. Furthermore, if a patient has not been thoroughly explained the benefits and risks associated with therapy to the patient’s understanding and satisfaction, this also sets a shaky foundation for responsible treatment. These oversights and acts of negligence do happen, and do so with increasing frequency. Make sure your provider has your best interests in mind. It is your body and health that will pay the price if your care is mismanaged.
There are scholars and experts on both sides of the argument. Both sides have some valid points. The heart of the matter is whether treatment is done for the right reasons. Certainly, there are opportunities for things to be done the right way and the potential for things to be done the wrong way.
If you are truly interested in therapy and wondering “Is Low T Real?”:
- Talk to your friends. Some of them probably have experience with TRT
- Do your research; be a well-informed patient with well-formed expectations.
- Finally, we are here for free consultations and would be happy to talk things over with you.
We know that therapy is not right for everyone and will always work hard to help our patients find their best solution. Please feel free to CONTACT US with any questions you may have.