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Boosting testosterone for ME symptom alleviation?

Discussion in 'Alternative Therapies' started by redo, Jan 8, 2012.

  1. redo

    redo Senior Member

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    Most studies on gender and ME show that there are more females than males who get the disease. One major difference between the genders are hormones and thereby also how the immune system functions (a immune system with high testosterone is significantly different from one with low testosterone).

    ME is more or less related to many other syndromes, such as RA. One study have shown that "serum testosterone levels are inversely correlated with RA activity and dehydro-epiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) plasma levels are inversely correlated with both disease duration and clinical severity in patients already affected by active RA. (link)".

    So, I my thoughts where, perhaps a higher level of testosterone would be beneficial for PWME? I am contemplating to begin exercising with weights. The most important reason to not do it for me, is that I am having tendon/inflammation problems around my right elbow. Anyone here who've begun exercising and benefited from it?
  2. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    theoretically good testosterone levels should help improve general recovery as it does for bodybuilders who take testosterone.
    If your having elbow problems, maybe just stick to one exercise until it recovers, the squat is said to help improve hormone levels, but it seems that its big exercises like squats that effect a large amount of muscle have this effect. Smaller exercises like bicep curls apparently have little effect on hormones. I think your biggest problem will be trying to avoid PEM.

    cheers!!!
  3. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Can you get testosterone supplements? I would be very weary to start using bodybuilding excercises because of the PEM problem.
  4. Patrick*

    Patrick* Formerly PWCalvin

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    I was prescribed testosterone last week because my levels tested low. Not out of range, just in the lower 1/4 of the "normal" range. This was part of a larger plan to bring up the levels of several vitamins, hormones and NKCs that supposedly will boost my immune system.

    The doctor gave me a choice between using a cream that you rub on your shoulders once a day (it absorbs through the skin), or self injections. He said the injections were more effective, but I chose to start with the cream and see if that is effective in raising my testosterone levels. I get another blood test in 2 months, so I'll know then.

    I don't think I'm in a position to begin exercising again, but I'll let you know how the testosterone supplementation works out for me if you're interested.
  5. bedman

    bedman

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    Actually a very reputable infectious disease doc suggested i try 25 mg testosterone cream although my levels are fine. But i havent tried it yet.
  6. markmc20001

    markmc20001 Guest

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    I tried testosterone and felt great for a couple weeks, after awhile I crashed and ended up waaaay worse than when I started.

    I think it can stimulate certain types of viruses.
    taniaaust1 likes this.
  7. adreno

    adreno 3% neanderthal

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    I have over the reference values of testosterone, for some reason I am not aware of (I don't supplement). I still suffer from CFS/ME, and PENE. Testosterone can also lower cortisol to some degree.

    I try to workout with weights as much as I'm able. Sometimes that's two times per week, sometimes it's zero. I find it usually takes me about three days to recover. Overall, I am getting slowly stronger, and I suspect this will in turn help to make my everyday activities less strenuous. I am sure that carrying shopping bags, children, or climbing stairs, having sex or whatever daily activities will be easier with more muscle strength.

    Bodyweight exercises can be great also. I tend to do higher reps with lower weights as this takes less of a toll on the CNS. I take plenty of rest between sets, until my pulse calms down (I use a pulse watch), and keep the volume low (one exercise per body part). I do all my exercises either sitting, or lying down, as I have POTS and standing with weights is a killer. For instance, instead of squats I use horizontal leg presses, instead of deadlifts or barbell rows I use machine or cable rows, aso. For cardio I use an exercise bike.

    I've found electrolytes is a big component of PEM/PENE for me. I literally need grams of potassium, along with some sodium, carbs and protein (and lots of rest) to recover. I only workout in the morning after breakfast, when I seem to have the most energy. Around afternoon I'm too fatigued to do any physical work. Maybe it's because of dropping cortisol levels. My cortisol is rather low.

    I won't lie; exercising is not an enjoyable experience for me. Often I get dizzy, fatigued, shaky and nauseated. But I find that if I do not exercise for long periods of time, my body gets increasingly weaker, and everyday activities becomes intolerable hard.
  8. Hi Bedman, Been there done that be careful!!

    Yes I am screaming out now in anger trying to get a script to go back on testosterone as it makes a huge difference e.g. boosts immune system, Increases blood volume.

    I found that my old life was back in 2 weeks of increasing my testosterone levels; my Doctor was astounded as if a completely new patient walked into his consulting room that had no reason to see him other than a repeat script.

    For Me

    Upside: decrease in anger & frustrations, my mind could think far more clearly things that took all day to write due to brain fog I was doing in an hour or less, I did not want to hide from the world, my yin & yang the essence of a complete person was back, Work well :( yes I went and hit it hard, for all the years my mother help me being so sick, I started to build her a home improvement completely by hand I did a job that 6 men should of been building, before getting sick I was working on mining refinery construction sites that meant 12 hour days 7 days a week sometimes for 3 months strait. So feeling almost like I did before ME/CFS I had the same mentality draw up the plans and get stuck in, the project went fine for the first couple of months however I started to get far more muscle pain and my inflammation markers were going up and up.

    For Me:

    Downside: If you feel that you are back to normal DONT push it!"Don't repeat my mistake" I cannot stress that enough! You are far from normal there is much more going on with ME/CFS then hormonal imbalances. If you watched the WIP's first lecture on XMRV Dr. Mikovits said on one of her slide that increasing testosterone and oestrogen increases inflammations by turning on the XMRV virus. "It sounded like a good explanation at the time" and I was very much hoping XMRV was it and HRT plus retroviral medication would be our answer to treatments and our life's back but we know how that theory has fallen apart.

    My current hope is that of Dr Klimas and her exercise studies that showed 1 to 2 minutes on the bike inflammations goes up and stays there for prolong periods of time.

    So if it works for you don't over do it start slowly in the gym with plenty of recovery time! listen to your body if you have increased fibromyalgia muscle pain and increasing CRP inflammations slow down more perhaps use the testosterone in spurts every second day it's a trail & error thing.

    At least you have an understanding infectious diseases doctor. The one I went to nearly killed me with his treatment plan as CFS is all in the head and he also formally disciplined my Doctor for proscribing testosterone as I was in the range (Bottom end of sick people) and there was no need for me to be on that medication, that was end 2008 I hope his attitude has changed but he will still not see me for a review! Maybe because of vanity? I am still repairing my gut damage he caused and my anger towards him remains only because of his arrogance but I am thinking a letter from my lawyer will be going his way as soon as a little more positive scientific papers are published.

    All the best
    Scott
  9. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    one reason why alot of guys feel worse several weeks after starting testosterone(TRT) is that it can aromatise to estrogen and make u feel crap. If u have a tendancy to put weight on around yoyr belly then you probably carry more of these aromatizing enzymes that convert testosterone into estrogen. One way to help minimise this is to use lower doses of TRT but more frequently. Many docs will give guys a 250mg injection every 3 weeks which produces lots of ups and downs and just this can make u feel like crap but also can increase estrogen. WHat they have found is that injecting 100mg once a week and some guy use 50mg twice a week, have been able to keep estrogen levels down. The other way is to use an aromatizing inhibitor drug like arimidex, this also helps increase your free testosterone levels as its not now turning into estrogen. Keeping estrogen within check with good amounts of testosterone is what TRT should be aiming for, but it estrogen go's whacky then u will feel like crap. NOt many docs that really understand TRT and the role estrogen plays or even interperute your blood test results properly either??

    here's some links on how to use TRT properly http://tnation.t-nation.com/free_on...odybuilding_trt/estradiol_why_you_should_care
    http://tnation.t-nation.com/free_on..._bodybuilding_trt/trt_protocol_for_injections

    Theres alot of misunderstanding about TRT out there just like it is with cfs/ME.

    cheers!!!
  10. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    heres a cut and paste of what also happens when starting testosterone therapy that we have to be aware off and a reason why many can feel bad on it unless consideration it taken to other hormones.

    When a man introduces Testosterone exogenously it significantly changes how the Hypothalamus(H), Pituitary(P) and Testicle(T) glands react to each other in keeping men's androgenic hormones in balance. Many of our hormones act in a cascading event and the axis between the these three glands are no different.

    When T levels are low in a normal healthy man the Hypothalamus releases a "releasing" hormone (LHRH) that tells the Pituitary to release another hormone known as Luteinizing Hormone (LH). In turn, LH reaches the receptors on the Leydig cells within the testicles telling them to do their thing among which is the production of Sperm, Testosterone and Pregnenolone among other things.

    Exogenous Testosterone halts the HPT Axis (HPTA) and as such the testicles are no longer receiving LH. This is know by most of us as simply "shutdown" or "HPTA suppression."

    In order for men on a TRT protocol where they are in a state of shutdown/suppression to make up for the lost production of LH they will need add hCG to their protocol which is a bioidentical form of LH (LH Analog).

    hCG (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_c...c_gonadotropin) is a water based peptide hormone that can only be injected to replace the lost LH hormone that a TRT protocol shuts down. There are "so called" oral forms of hCG that some men are placed on, or purchased from other sources, but from all that I read it's not possible to injest hCG and get it past the liver to make its efficacy plausible. Recently, oral micronized verions of hCG are available by prescription and have shown to be a successful alternative to injections for some men...talk to your Doctor.

    So what happens when a man testicles don't function anymore do to the lack of LH?

    1. The Biggie: Testicular Atrophy. Men will see their testes get smaller over time and hurt constantly along the way. The duration for this event seems to be different in men where younger guys can seem to go longer where mid to older guys see the event happens on a more accelerated scale. Some think it happens to do with the amount of receptors on the Leydig cells...but who really knows.
    2. Sperm production is pretty much halted.
    3. Men's scrotum's will get really tight and pull up against the body causing pain and end up looking like a 5 year old.
    4. The testes are the single largest producer of the hormonePregnenolone; the mother of all hormones (http://www.antiaging-systems.com/165...one-metabolite) We need Pregnenolone for so many reasons (read the link) and while it can be supplemented it's hit or miss on how effective supplementation can be.

    Why we need hCG :
    1. To produce Pregnenolone!!! (Read the link above, please.)
    2. To produce the precursors for DHEA, Estrogen, Cortisol, Testosterone and DHT...back filling the pathways
    3. For proper and normal brain function
    4. For proper functioning of the testicles
    5. If men ever want to restart
    6. If men ever want to have children
    7. If men don't want balls that end up in a small mass of useless Collagen
    8. The list goes on...

    In short, hCG keeps the testicles functioning in a normal state. It prevents pregnenolone deficiency and supporting all our other CHOL pathways and hormones as well.

    As we've all seen first hand in this community; when a man on a TRT protocol is not on hCG they complain of shrinking testicle and the accompanying pain that goes with it.

    But whey they start on hCG (because of all the things listed above and more) they all state how much better they feel and the pain associated with their testicular atrophy subsiding and that their testicles feel much better as well.

    Does a man need hCG on a TRT protocol? Nope. But for all the reasons above a man should be made aware of why hCG and Pregnenolone are important to their health and well being on a life long journey of TRT .

    The efficacy for hCG for both Primary and Secondary Hypogonadism has been documented.

    Pregnenolone - Why You Need It
    Pregnenolone is a hormone that many Doctors and men are not familiar with or understand it's role in the CHOL pathways but it's critically important to our health as it is a "precursor hormone " to all other hormones. Restoring Pregnenolone to optimal levels is important but seems to get the least attention by Doctors.

    So what are the benefits of Pregnenolone?

    In our bodies Pregnenolone is manufactured by cholesterol (CHOL). The hormone performs many functions in a mans body, including:

    1. Promotes healthy brain function and protects against dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Many men state feeling good when they start supplementing Pregnenolone. It can also prevent age related diseases and support the Central Nervous System (CNS).
    2. Boosts the immune system and increases energy produciton.
    3. Protects against coronary disease and improves heart health and can lower cholesterol levels.
    4. Enhances mood and relieves depression. Many men state their mood betters when they start supplementation.
    5. Relieves arthritis pain!
    6. Fights the effects of fatigue and stress.

    The optimal serum levels of Pregnenolone 180 ng/dl for men. Pregnenolone can be purchased over the counter in a pill or sublingual form in addition to subdermal creams. A typical dose is 50 to 200 mg daily best taken in the morning on an empty stomach (cream applied in the morning as well). Pregnenolone is considered safe and because is converts to DHEA which leads to other hormones it's best to get your Pregnenolone levels tested before supplementing.

    http://forums.steroid.com/showthread.php?471543-hCG-and-Pregnenolone-What-you-should-know.

    cheers!!!
  11. markmc20001

    markmc20001 Guest

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    My crash wasn't a matter of just overdoing it. I started feeling like a million bucks for a few weeks. Could think great, eat anything, wanted sex all the time, felt strong. However, after awhile ended up angry and anxious, seriously depressed, and was forced to quit.

    After I quit, then my energy tanked, my brain was so fried I was completely ineffective, weak, everything was worse then when I started taking testosterone and I don't think I totally recovered from it.

    I would highly reccommend avoiding taking it to anyone who doens't know what is causing his fatigue.
    svetoslav80 likes this.
  12. mellster

    mellster Marco

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    I have good experiences with the gel which raises levels slowly as absorption is less and somewhat up to the body - I don't think I would take injections. Any hormonal therapy should be as gentle as possible. Another way to counter testosterone depletion is to avoid any soy if possible. A lot of the generally observed testosterone decrease and estrogen increase has been blamed on the soy invasion into our foods. The Japanese usually only eat fermented soy which is supposedly healthier. Anyhow, just an idea, this us not fully proven but a controversy right now and I think there is definitely some truth to it.
  13. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Mark, do you think it gave u a false energy, whipping at dead horse, and then completely crashed?
  14. meandthecat

    meandthecat

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    Being in my late fifties my doc seems to think that my testosterone levels should be low.

    I use DHEA which had no effect on the test results and then tried Tonkat ali, a herbal that is supposed to enhance testosterone production and it seems to work. The effect is mild but noticable; Testosterone feels good and makes life so much easier as a man, you pick up so much crap when it's low and I just seem to shed it now.

    Will be interesting to see if it shows in the next test, if I can persuade him to do one.

    I've been trying to build up my exercise, and I would say that my muscle mass is increasing but, big but, I am so careful to back off, not to push it and mostly it works.
  15. markmc20001

    markmc20001 Guest

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    Heya Heaps,

    Pretty sure it did not. I wasn't very bad when I started the testosterone. I was still able to work, run, and ride bikes. I never really pushed it any harder with the testosterone than I usually did anyways physically. Mentally I probably pushed it a little harder, but the whole time I never did anything outside what a normal sedintary human would do in an 8 hr day.

    I know my body very well. I can feel when I'm overdoing it, and know how to agressively rest to recover. Pretty sure the testosterone made everything worse. I had the good stuff too, the pregnelone, and all that.

    Probably had some unaddressed adrenal fatigue, that seemed to totally go away for a short time with the creme and gel I tried. It's possible I guess the adrenal fatigue could have been exaserbated.

    After that, I was forced to quit working. Totally lost my mental capacity, and my anxiety and stuff went through the roof.

    For my particular situation, I believe the hormones are all out of whack for a particular health reason. MY body is trying to compensate for being sick and keeps them low to compensate. Just what I can say from trial and error, and no scientific explanation.

    I've actually had my testosterone levels raise at times when I get the right vitamins going and diet. I've since screwed up my stomach with some chelators (I think), and nothing seems to be working anymore.
  16. August59

    August59 Daughters High School Graduation

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    Be careful with the DHEA as it has the tendency to turn to estrogen instead of testosterone, if your testosterone is already up in the normal range.
  17. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Thats my experience and why i take an antiestrogen to prevent this,but i use dhea as my readings are below the reference range and dhea has other benefits besides increasing hormones like helping control negative effects of cortisol, etc.

    cheers!!!
  18. pine108kell

    pine108kell Senior Member

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    Some interesting posts on Testosterone.

    I just had mine tested and I was below range. I was at 302 ng/dL and normal for age is 348-1197. I have been feeling worse last couple of years with very significant reductions in an already low endurance, more moody. So, my dr. is Rxing me topical form "10 mg / 1 acutation, 4 pumps to front and inner thigh in AM." He claims this is a low trial dose but I have no idea. Does anyone have any experience/suggestions based on this?
  19. baccarat

    baccarat Senior Member

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    The relevant testosterone level to test for is "free testosterone". That's according to my doctor. As we age most testosterone is bound to something I can't remember and becomes inactive. My doctor refused to give me testosterone and advised instead to supplement with zinc, my zinc levels were low, as this seems to be a key mineral for the body to make testosterone and getting in to an active state (it seems particulalry important for all males with an active sex life as this alone can severely deplete reserves). As far as I can tell the zinc seems to help.
  20. Parismountain

    Parismountain Senior Member

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    I'd be careful with the T shots. I started with a medium dose (can't remember), had a whammy effect on me. Never had sweat in years then wow I'm sweating again. That lasted about a month and then the shots would be back to no effect on me again. Doubled the dose, nothing. Took blood tests, uh oh hemoglobin and hematocrit ratios in immediate stroke area. Thought about spilling blood monthly (can't donate) but went to endo doc and he noted there's about 20% of men who have this reaction to T, red blood cell production making syrupy blood.

    Now I'm off it completely, killed a good bit of my natural ability to create T by supplementing it for most of a year and wondering whether to try the HcG that my CFS doc says I should try. Just be careful.

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