Five Myths About Low Testosterone And Testosterone Therapy
NEW YORK, Nov. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The prevalence of erectile dysfunction (ED) has men of all ages seeking the most effective treatment. In recent years, low testosterone is the scapegoat for a growing number of male sexuality issues, including low sex drive and impotence. Testosterone therapy may be easy, but top penile implant surgeon, Dr. J. Francois Eid, cautions that the fallout is an abundance of men unnecessarily “addicted” to hormone replacement therapy.
“Testosterone replacement therapy arrests the body’s natural production of testosterone. The treatment is now showing striking similarities to past problems with hormone replacement for women,” explains Dr. Eid, innovator of the No Touch Technique for penile implant and penile prosthesis surgery. “Surgery isn’t the answer for everyone, but neither is testosterone. Accurate diagnosis of ED symptoms is critical,” he says. “Very few men have abnormal (low) testosterone. We have to explore ED causes before assuming low testosterone to be the reason.”
Testosterone is responsible for many a manly attribute, but Dr. Eid answers the five most common myths about “Low T” treatment.
Myth #1: My erection problems are caused by low testosterone.
The ability to achieve and sustain a normal erection does not require a normal testosterone level. Increasing testosterone level does not increase the strength or frequency of erections. ED is not a hormone problem, it’s a vascular problem. Male impotence or weak erections are caused by blood flow and blood storage problems in the penis; adding testosterone won’t fix that.
Myth: If I take testosterone my sex drive and erections will improve.
Sex drive is a complicated beast that can be negatively impacted by lack of sleep, stress, relationship issues, and other lifestyle factors. Testosterone plays a role in sex drive, but it’s not a cure-all and it won’t override other issues. Studies have proven that testosterone replacement does not improve a man’s erections when compared to a placebo.
Myth #3 – My doctor said my testosterone level is low, so it must be.
Normal testosterone level is measured as a range between 300 and 1,200 nanograms per deciliter, not a high-low scale. Men at the low end do not have Low T. Further, a man’s testosterone level changes throughout the day and gradually, consistently declines each year beginning around age 35. Few men have levels below 300 mg/dL and those who do should repeat the test before embarking on treatment. If level continue to show abnormally low after a second test, further evaluation is needed to find the cause.
Myth #4 – Testosterone replacement is healthy; it’s just more of what my body makes naturally.
The body generally makes what the body needs, and if it’s not making enough testosterone it’s often an indication of a medical condition such as diabetes, thyroid problems, or liver or pituitary deficiencies. Testosterone therapy stops natural hormone production and long-term side effects may include reduced sperm count, infertility, testicle shrinking, urinary issues, prostate cancer growth, and more.
Myth #5 – I feel better and have more energy when I use testosterone, so it must be working.
Testosterone replacement therapy does boost mood and energy level and men commonly report feeling better. However, those changes take place because testosterone is a steroid. Severe depression and symptoms of withdrawal can occur when men stop testosterone replacement. Having more energy and simply feeling better won’t translate to better or stronger erections.
The Bottom Line
While testosterone therapy has its place, Dr. Eid encourages men with ED to dig deeper. “Partner with a sexual dysfunction expert you trust to find the right treatment for your sex life and your wellbeing,” he says. “Men with ED have a lot of choices and I encourage them to find a specialist who has experience in everything from oral medications, to penile injection therapy, to surgical penile implants; someone who can work with them at any stage of ED recovery.”
As innovator of the No Touch Technique, Dr. Eid performs more penile implants than any other surgeon – more than 300 per year. His patients and their partners enjoy long-term, natural-feeling results with his highly safe penile pumps.
To learn more about low testosterone and ED treatment options, visit www.urologicalcare.com or schedule a consultation with Dr. Eid in his New York City practice. Patients from around the world seek his superior surgical skill and the expert, compassionate care of his staff.