FAQ — Low Testosterone and Sexual health
What does testosterone do?
Testosterone is the male sex hormone in charge of normal growth and development of male sex organs and for the maintenance of other sexual characteristics, such as:
- Growth and maturation of prostate and other male sex organs
- Development of male hair distribution such as facial hair
- Changes in body muscle mass and strength and fat distribution
- Sex drive and sexual function
- Mood and energy level
- Bone strength
What is low testosterone?
Low testosterone or low T is what happens when testosterone levels in your blood fall below 350 ng/dL. Hypogonadism is a medical term you may also hear. It refers to a decrease in either testosterone production, sperm production, or both in a male. At Craft Medical we focus on the testosterone side of the issue to help improve your quality of life. Why? Because the symptoms of low T are often distressing and continue to be more so as time passes.
What are symptoms of low testosterone in males?
Signs of low T in a man include could include:
- Less energy
- Reduced sex drive
- Less frequent sexual activities
- Erectile dysfunction (ED)
- Depressed mood
- Less muscle mass
- More body fat
- Anemia (low iron)
- Loss of bone strength
What causes low testosterone in males?
As a man ages, the amount of testosterone in his body gradually declines. After age 30, this natural decrease begins and continues (about 1% per year) throughout his life.
However, there are other risk factors that can cause more severe cases low T apart from the natural drop, including:
- Injury (trauma, interrupted blood supply to the testes) or infection of the testes (orchitis)
- Cancer-related chemotherapy
- Metabolic disorders such as hemochromatosis (excessive iron in the body)
- Dysfunction or tumors of the pituitary gland
- Medications, including opioids, hormones used to treat prostate cancer, and steroids (such as prednisone)
- Short-term or long-term illness
- Alcohol abuse
- Cirrhosis of the liver
- Chronic renal (kidney) failure
- Inflammatory conditions
- Kallman syndrome (abnormal development of the hypothalamus, a gland in the brain that regulates a lot of your hormones)
- Klinefelter syndrome (a genetic condition in which a male is born with an extra copy of the X chromosome). Also called XXY syndrome
- High levels of the milk-producing hormone prolactin
- Obesity or extreme weight loss
- Uncontrolled type 2 diabetes mellitus
- Congenital defect (present at birth)
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Estrogen excess (usually from an outside source)
- Previous anabolic steroid abuse
- Severe primary hypothyroidism
- Pubertal delay
- Head trauma
- Radiation exposure or prior surgery of the brain
What does low testosterone do?
Low T can affect men to varying degrees. The symptoms can range from subtle to near debilitating, if depression and lack of desire to work or participate in routine activities occurs. Many men do not understand what is happening to them, which can tailspin into worsening health, both mentally and physically.
Men who unknowingly suffering from low testosterone often report losing interest in work or hobbies that they were once passionate about or a drastic drop in sexual interest. Some are driven to change these new unwanted symptoms by pushing themselves at the gym, only to ultimately become devastated that all their hard work has only resulted in continued loss of muscle.
They often do not know that they are not getting the desired results because what is lacking is hormone-related.
Do I have low testosterone?
If you’re experiencing any of these signs, you may have low T:
- Problems with erections
- Hair loss
- Reduced bone mass
- Reduction in testicle size
- Reduced semen amount
- Difficulty sleeping
- Lower sex drive
- Reduced muscle mass
- Hot flashes
- Decrease in energy levels
- Increase in body fat
- Mood swings or changes in mood
The best way to know if you have low testosterone is to have your blood tested.
How do you test for low testosterone?
At Craft Medical, we will send you to a lab in your area where professionals will draw blood so that we can be sure to receive reliable test results.
Can low testosterone cause depression and anxiety?
Both low T and depression have symptoms in common. However, it is the physical symptoms that manifest with each condition that tend to be different.
Common symptoms include:
- Low sex drive
- Memory problems
- Trouble concentrating
- Sleep problems
People who experience depression but have normal hormone levels generally do not have breast swelling and decreased muscle mass and strength, which are associated with low T. The physical manifestations of depression are usually centered around headaches and back pain.
If you’re feeling down, irritable, or not yourself, blood work can help determine if your testosterone levels are normal.
Does low testosterone mean low sperm count?
Low T doesn’t necessarily cause infertility. Not directly. Men with low testosterone can still produce healthy sperm because sperm production is mainly stimulated by other hormones. However, low levels of testosterone can affect sperm production, i.e. by reducing it.
There’s an indirect effect on fertility, however, because of reduced sex drive that can result in a lack of desire to have sex. It can also cause erectile dysfunction, leading to fewer erections or erections that aren’t as strong as they once were. This can make it difficult to reach climax or to have sex often enough to reproduce.
What is a low testosterone level?
Testosterone levels between 350 ng/dL and 1000 ng/dL are considered “normal”. In healthy men, the brain and the testes coordinate to keep the hormone levels within this range. So, a blood test showing a circulating testosterone level of under 300 ng/dL is generally considered low.
Can low testosterone cause weight gain?
Yes. Low T can cause an increase in body fat, especially around the midsection. This leaves many men to battle a bulge they were not previously used to. Conversely, obesity itself is one of the risk factors for low testosterone. Researchers are still tyring to understand the correlation.
Is low testosterone genetic?
Both primary hypogonadism (low testosterone that originates in the testicles) and secondary hypogonadism (low T that originates in glands in the brain that control hormones) can be cause by inherited traits or acquired traits. See the Q&A above on causes of low testosterone.
What is testosterone replacement therapy?
Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is when you are prescribed testosterone to supplement your Low-T. Craft Medical prescribes injections, sublingual tablets (troches), and, in some states, cream.
How can you get TRT?
It’s as simple as signing up online with Craft Medical, taking a quick trip to a lab in your area to give blood samples, and having a tele-health visit with a low T expert doctor from the comfort and privacy of your home.
Through the consultation and lab results, we are able to craft a tailored treatment that’s right for you.
Are there low testosterone doctors near me?
There’s nothing closer than a doctor that you can talk to through a video chat on your computer, tablet, or phone.
Why else should you choose Craft Medical?
- Crafted Care — personalized support based on your blood work and symptoms
- HIPAA-Compliant, Web-Based Platform — your personal information is always safe and secure
- Online Ordering — products discreetly delivered to your door
- Full Sexual Health — ranging from erectile dysfunction to premature ejaculation to herpes medication, our expert, certified physicians have your sexual health covered
What does TRT cost?
Enroll with Craft Medical right now and it’s only $49 for a test and a telehealth consultation with a physician. Customized hormone support packages include:
- Hormone Support Vitamins — custom vitamins based on your lab work — $40/month
- Hormone Replacement Therapy — a month supply of testosterone and all necessary accessories labs and doctor visits from the comfort of home — $160/month
- Total Support — complete Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT), sexual wellness, and vitamins $200/month
What Can I Expect From TRT?
When you start testosterone therapy, you will likely notice benefits within a month. For some, it takes a little longer. You can choose to discontinue TRT at any time.
Benefits include improved:
- Sex drive
- Sexual performance
- Quality of life
Are there side effects?
Testosterone replacement therapy is safe for our patients. We maintain that by monitoring each patient’s testosterone level, estrogen level, prostate-specific antigen level (a marker for prostate health), and hematocrit (a measure of red blood cell production). By controlling for those four variables, we are able to provide testosterone replacement therapy in a very safe way.
Common side effects that we can address when they arise include acne and breast tenderness. Our monitoring addresses other concerns like blood clots, high blood pressure, aggression, and agitation. Testosterone replacement therapy could affect a patient’s fertility in the short-term during treatment, so we may recommend another option that improves testosterone levels but preserves fertility.
How Can I Get the Most Out of TRT?
Our experts recommend that you:
- Stick to your recommended dosing schedule
- Consult your Craft Medical doctor if you get off track
- Store your testosterone at room temperature, even when traveling
- Make sure it is out of reach of children
What is erectile dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is the inability to get and keep an erection firm enough for sex.
What are the signs of erectile dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction symptoms might include ongoing:
- Trouble getting an erection
- Trouble keeping an erection
- Reduced sexual desire
What causes erectile dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction can result from a problem stemming from anything from the brain to hormones to emotions to nerves, muscles, or blood vessels. Likewise, stress and mental health concerns can cause or worsen impotence. Sometimes a combination of physical and psychological issues can cause ED.
Physical causes of erectile dysfunction may include:
- Heart disease
- Clogged blood vessels (atherosclerosis)
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Metabolic syndrome — a condition involving increased blood pressure, high insulin levels, body fat around the waist and high cholesterol
- Parkinson’s disease
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Certain prescription medications
- Tobacco use
- Peyronie’s disease — development of scar tissue inside the penis
- Alcoholism and other forms of substance abuse
- Sleep disorders
- Treatments for prostate cancer or enlarged prostate
- Surgeries or injuries that affect the pelvic area or spinal cord
- Low testosterone
Psychological causes of erectile dysfunction might include:
- Depression, anxiety, or other mental health conditions
- Relationship problems due to stress, poor communication, or other concerns
What are ED treatment options?
Correcting with lifestyle changes and treating health problems is a recommended place to start. A doctor, after your health assessment, can make recommendations for these. There are also medications for erectile dysfunctions. It’s best to consult with a physician to determine the best course of treatment for you personally.
Are erectile dysfunction meds available?
Sildenafil (Viagra) is often the first ED drug doctors prescribe. It’s been on the market longest, and we know a lot about its side effects and interactions with food and other medications.
In addition to Viagra, the U.S. market has other drugs for impotence, such as avanafil (Stendra), tadalafil (Cialis), and vardenafil (Levitra). These all improve blood supply to the penis. Along with sexual stimulation, these ED medicines can produce stiffness long enough to initiate and complete intercourse.
Is there an erectile dysfunction doctor near me?
Craft Medical is a virtual clinic that offers telehealth visits with physicians who are experts in sexual health. It doesn’t it get any nearer to your home than that?
What is premature ejaculation?
Premature ejaculation (PE) is when a man ejaculates sooner than he or his partner would like during sex. It’s only a cause for concern when you:
- Always or nearly always ejaculate within one minute of penetration
- Are unable to delay ejaculation during intercourse all or nearly all of the time
- Feel distressed and frustrated, and tend to avoid sex as a result
What are the symptoms of premature ejaculation?
The main symptom of premature ejaculation is the inability to delay ejaculation for more than one minute after penetration. However, it could be an issue in all sexual situations, including during masturbation.
What Are Premature Ejaculation Causes?
The exact cause of premature ejaculation isn’t known. However, doctors now know that PE involves a complex interaction of psychological and biological factors.
Psychological factors that might play a role include:
- Early sexual experiences
- Sexual abuse
- Poor body image
- Worrying about premature ejaculation
- Guilty feelings that increase your tendency to rush through sexual encounters
Other factors that can play a role include ED, anxiety, and relationship problems.
A number of biological factors can contribute to PE, including:
- Abnormal hormone levels
- Abnormal levels of brain chemicals called neurotransmitters
- Inflammation and infection of the prostate or urethra
- Inherited traits
Is There Premature Ejaculation Medication?
Treatment for premature ejaculation may include behavioral techniques, meds, creams, and counseling. It’s important to find the right treatment that works for you. That’s why at Craft Medical, we customize treatment based on you and your lifestyle and follow up to monitor how each patient’s quality of life is affected.