I'm a 30 y/o male (I'll be 31 on Sunday).
First off I suffer from Subclinical Hyperthyroidism which consists of a low TSH ONLY. Therefore its not treated if all the other Thyroid hormones are normal. This is something that has run in the family.
Since the age of 20 I've had a real problem with my libido - to the point where I (still) can't have a stable relationship, and so on. Low Libido and ED were my first symptoms. Since I (at the time) was using antidepressants it was thought that this was the cause. However, as years passed (and did the medication - I wasn't using antidepressants anymore) my libido NEVER improved.
I used Steroids (anabolic) in 2001. One cycle of Sustanon / Dianobol / Test - I gained a great deal of muscle, trained and ate well - but still - no libido!
After my steroid use (first and only time) I used Clomid to get my levels up to par. Based on the Dr.'s I had seen at the time my Testosterone levels were normal (although at this time in my life - I was about 21-23, they were only testing "total t" not "free t".
In 2003 I had full hormone levels checked which showed fluctuations in my Testosterone levels to the LOW SIDE / not low-normal (free and total) and with my SHBG.
My Dr. at the time knew of my problems and wrote a letter stating that a patch could / should be used if low free test persisted.
By 2005 I met with a urologist who checked all of my prior labs and re-did them. They were some fluctuations due to other medications at the time - prolactin and such. But given the low test (this time it remained normal but in the normal low range) and the way I was feeling (no libido) I began treatment with "Testim" (first kind of Androgel) and felt great! My libido returned and about 6 months later my labs came up with my free test getting too high so we titrated off).
Since then things have been the same...or worse. I returned to the same urologist in 2008 with the same complaints and we discussed that TRT would need to be used on and off perhaps as it shouldn't be used long term. A Sperm count came back showing NO SPERM! And my hormone profile came back with elevated prolactin likely due to medication at the time (psychotropic medication).
I was then referred to an educational institution that has a medical school and met with an endocrinologist. She has reviewed EVERY single one of my lab tests since Day 1 - and even made a chart noting fluctuations. She is also very well educated and empathizes with me.
In her opinion, my Sublclinical hyperthyroidism doesn't need to be treated (as all the other endocrinologists have said) unless they are fluctuations in the other thyroid hormones.
As for the TRT. She agrees that despite me testing in the low-normal range (if total test is 300-800 mine is within the 300's / same for free test, always LOW NORMAL) that if the quality of my life improves she doesn't mind TRT. My sperm count also returned to normal and I suspect it was a result of the psychotropic medication. As for the TRT she thinks in the long term that if i use it then gonadtrophins could be used to help with the natural production of sperm and such if and when I'm ready to have kids. She has given me a RX for Androgel which i am unable to afford since I am uninsured. Given my history of depression and antidepressants over the last 10 years I have had to deal with the "its psychological" label - which I don't argue that there couldn't be some cause of that. But for someone with 10 years of this problem and having been diagnosed with LOW TEST via lab results and/or results only in the LOW NORMAL range i don't think its a coincidence.
Anyway, given the Androgel was too expensive she has no given me Clomid. I am taking 25mg per day and I am having my TEST checked (free and total) within 30 days from the start date and then continue. I anticipate her allowing me to stay on it for another few months after the initial 30 days (I had my labs checked prior, but the lab messed up and only did Total T) so we can check for progress.
As for how I'm feeling - well, If you've had this problem as long as I've had then you'd be depressed about it.....
It's a sh-- thing but I am grateful to have now met a doctor who understands this problem and the balance between quality of life and medicine. She has also written a letter stating my condition so if i relocate I am able to obtain TRT due to what she has written.
I don't feel much of anything being on the Clomid for 2 weeks now. But I have read several reports about people abusing steroids and having a "total shutdown" of natural production of test using Clomid for 6 months and having levels return to normal - which is my hope.
What are your thoughts on this?
I would much rather the Androgel as I feel the effect almost immediately (despite it shutting off your natural production) however I am unable to afford it.
Given that I have used anabolic steroids in the past and didn't feel any difference with my libido there is some argument that it remains psychological and it could be some kind of placebo effect, but despite that if it is done correctly / and supervised by a Dr. then my qualify of life is vastly improved.
Anyway. I wanted to know if anyone has had similar problems with low test and ED for so long and if any other things have worked. One on end of the spectrum you have people going into "rejuvenation clinics" and getting diagnosed with hypogonadism like I legitimately have and getting heaps of anabolic test and HGH and they are in far better shape than me! But I've been doing it the "right way" seeing Dr.'s and what not...and I'm still fighting it. It seems now with the letters and depending on what i can afford its going to be something i use on and off for life (TRT) - I don't have a problem with that, as long as it works.