Low free testosterone and anxiety
- 11-07-2009, 08:58 PM
Low free testosterone and anxiety
Hi, for about the last 10 years (I'm 57) I've had pretty bad anxiety and insomnia, sometimes waking in the middle of the night with an anxiety attack. I had my hormones checked recently and here's some of what I learned:
Total Testosterone 494 (240-950)
Free Testosterone 34 (45-85)
E1 2.2 (3-12)
E2 1.4 (0-7)
Total Estrogens 6.8 (4-22)
DHT 9.2 (0-13)
SHBG 55 (10-60)
Insulin 3.4 (6.0-29.0)
Cortisol 91 (35-168)
I also have a slow pulse (resting about 60), low average body temp (about 97.5) and low blood pressure. I've been told many times my thyroid is normal, though my rT3 is high. I've tried Androgel and Hydrocortisone recently, and they both made me feel worse. I feel better if I eat a lot of protein and avoid sugar, salt and food containing tryptophan, like chicken. My doctor has no clue what's going on. I don't have problems with ED or such. From how I feel, I would guess that I have too much Estrogen, but the numbers don't really support that, I guess. Does anyone have any theories that might shed some light, or ideas about what to try?? I really need to get a good nights sleep. Thanks.
- 11-07-2009, 09:02 PM
Aside from the anxiety/insomnia, do you feel lethargic? have you seen a doctor/psychiatrist to work with these issues specifically? A pulse of 60 isn't that slow, especially if you're reasonably fit. What's your blood pressure readings like?
- 11-07-2009, 10:59 PM
I seem to have as much energy as ever. I exercise pretty regularly. My bp was 100/60 the last time it was checked, but is usually a bit higher. I've been to a few doctors, but not a psychiatrist. I believe it has a physical cause, because of how fast it came on, and the way it responds to diet.
11-08-2009, 02:46 PM
What kind of labs are these did you do a Saliva test I never see labs for Estradiol that have a range like this unless they were Saliva labs and they are not good for Sex Hormones.
If you were on HC how did you start on it and how much a day. You sure sound like you have Adrenal Fatigue to me. Here is a link about this and Thyroid you need to post your labs for this with the units do you live in the USA.
I have been helping men with Adrenal and Thyroid problems for yrs. I am a mod at this forum for this problem.
Here is a FAQ's I helped do some time ago it's full of info and links covers everything one needs to know about this problem.
When one starts on HC you need to start low 2.5 mgs and go up 2.5 mgs every 5 days unil your doing 5 mgs 4x's a day or every 4 hrs. I never heard of someone going on HC and feeling worse.
People with a low heart rate and BP need to test there Aldosterone levels one way to tell is to add some good Sea Salt to a glass of water first thing in the morning about a half tsp full and drink if down. People with this problem are dumping there sodium and feel hot or can't stand the heat of the summer and are dehydrated all the time.
11-08-2009, 04:23 PM
I'm in the US (MI in fact). The test for E1, E2 and total Estrogens was a 24 urine test from Rhein Labs. I also had a saliva test about 2 yrs. ago, and the results for Cortisol were:
0.33 (0.27-2.06) 7AM-9AM
0.20 (0.03-0.77) 11AM-1PM
0.09 (0.03-0.56) 3PM-5PM
<0.03 (0.03-0.50) 10PM-12AM
My doc prescribed Cortef back then. I don't remember the dosage, but I took it in the morning and at noon, for about a week. If I recall it felt like a stimulant but not bad, kind of good in fact. When I told my doctor it it made it hard to sleep he suggested I stop taking it. Recently, a different doc prescribed the HC. I took .5mg in the morning, and felt terrible all day - really scary anxiety. I couldn't wait for it to wear off. (And I'm never too hot, it's cold I can't take.)
A blood test from back then showed my Aldosterone as 7.4 (1-21) and DHEA as 157 (80-560). One of the things that helps me the most with anxiety is *not* eating salt. In fact, the weird way that the HC made me feel reminded me of how salt makes me feel. I seem to have 2 issues - waking a few times in the middle of the night with what feels like a huge adrenaline rush, and a scary kind of disoriented anxious feeling which I believe is kicked off by eating salt, among other things.
Thanks for the links, I'll check them out.
11-08-2009, 05:49 PM
I am in MI. too near M-59 and I-75 in Rochester Hills. You can't take 5mgs of HC and feel good you sound like your sugar is droping in the middle of the night try eating something before bed time like Cheese or Peanut Butter. I even keep something on my night stand to being up my sugar levels in the middle of the night. I don't have this problem anymore not that I am on 30 mgs a day of Cortef.
You sound like your in the early stage of Adrenal Falure it's all in the link I gave you about Adreanls and Thyroid.
Adrenal insufficiency is linked to insomnia in two ways.
If your cortisol drops too low during the night your blood sugar drops too. Your body compensate by releasing adrenaline as an emergency measure to mobilize more sugar. This has the effect of waking you in an instant. This can be reduced by eating high protein snack before retiring e.g. sardines, nuts of high quality protein shake.
In early stages of adrenal fatigue cortisol levels tend to rise and if they are high at midnight they can energise you and keep you awake. Phosphorylated serine can be used to lower cortisol at these times due to its ACTH dampening effect.
11-08-2009, 08:42 PM
Please check adrenal saliva test as well as the thyroid since thyroid meds increases SHBG as well as low cortisol levels. I would also look at liver function as well as malabrption issues (fats and low carb diet). If all this does not help then Danazol 50 mgs EOD may help reduce shbg increasing free T Since being in michagen I would also look at the potential for iodine deficeincy since being in the goiter belt.
I am not a medical Dr, please keep in mind that this answer is for information purposes only, and is not intended to diagnose, treat or replace sound medical advice from your physician or health care provider.
11-10-2009, 03:07 PM
11-12-2009, 12:01 AM
Your free T is below the ref range possibly because of your elevated SHBG, but I guess you know that already. If your doc prescribes Danazol you need to have your liver enzymes monitored regularly, as it is metabolized in the liver.
You may want to read up on nettleroot as an alternative for SHBG issues. It doesn't directly lower SHBG, but binds to it. Ask your doc if that will help you.
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