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Low-T has been on every man's newsfeed lately. That's because andropause has been on every man's mind - and for good reason. The level of testosterone in a man's body drops by about 1% every year after the age of 30 - slowly taking with it his vigor, stamina and sexual performance.
It's common for men to mourn the loss of their testosterone, but many don't realize it's not the only hormone that needs to be optimized in order to revive the lifestyle and libido of their younger years.
Weight gain, muscle loss, bone density loss, erectile dysfunction, anxiety, depression, and insomnia can make you feel less of a man - when really, you're simply more in need of a hormone audit.
Hormones are like the COOs of that biochemical communications firm that is your body - coordinating and transferring information from one set of worker cells to another. That's how they operate all of our body functions, and that's why unbalanced levels can put you at risk for diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis, thyroid disease, and even Alzheimer's Disease.
When will andropause monopolize your physiological functions? Asking your father at what age he went through it can provide a clue, but genetic code is only one piece of the puzzle. Your hormone balance fluctuates daily - in response to what you eat, how rigorously you exercise, how much stress you allow to seep into your days, and how well your hormones are functioning.
The 14 gland managers tasked with producing all your hormones may need a little help balancing their books. We've spent years seeking the ultimate biochemical accounting system, and found that not all testosterone treatments are equal. BioTE's Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) pellets are by far the most effective.
Bioidentical hormone molecules have the identical shape, make-up, and structure of your body's molecules - so they match your receptor sites like an aptly tweaked balance sheet.
Which hormones, and how much tweaking is required? That's what Novus hormone specialists have helped hundreds of men figure out.
Hormones are signaling molecules produced by your glands: the adrenal gland, the pituitary gland, the pineal gland, the hypothalamus, the thyroid, the thymus, the pancreas, and the testes. They secrete and regulate your immune hormones, sleep hormones, stress hormones, growth hormones, cardiac hormones, digestive hormones, and sex hormones.
Biochemical commands are sent to every tissue, organ, and body system to control growth, musculature, bone density, metabolism, emotional and sexual response via these hormones:
How much of each hormone will you need and for how long? That depends on your age, baseline levels, health, genetics, diet, lifestyle, environmental factors and follow up care.
Men often put off the trip to our Novus Anti-aging suite because they first want to try another low testosterone medication. Then another. And another. When they realize they still haven't targeted the root cause of their symptoms by optimizing their hormones, they finally pay us a visit - and usually leave our suite with a pep in their step.
Unlike some of their past providers who prescribed synthetic hormone replacement, we deliver hormones sourced from natural plants like yams, flax, and soybeans that match your body's - molecule by molecule. That's why they don't present the same risks and side effects that make synthetic chemical hormones problematic.
Bioidentical hormones are:
There are many forms of hormone delivery, but after decades of research, we've determined which is the most effective: pellets injected under the skin. Pellets enable us to deliver each hormone consistently, preventing the rollercoaster-like effects other forms can cause.
After your specialist completes your hormone level testing and determines your prescription, it will be sent to an FDA licensed compounding pharmacy where skilled clinicians will formulate your hormones into highly compressed bio-identical pellets about the size of a grain of rice. They will also be tested for consistency and purity.
The insertion procedure is virtually painless and takes only a few minutes. BioTE Medical has supplied over ¾ million insertions to date. Our highly-skilled specialists will strategically insert each pellet beneath the skin and into the fat of your upper buttocks. Dosages vary - from 25 mg up to 200 mg - and will depend on:
BioTE pellets are natural and last three to six months, so you'll only need to receive two to four pellet insertions per year. They release a small amount of hormone at a fairly constant level - a lot like your glands would if they were functioning properly.
Your imbalance took years to develop, so you have to give it time to resolve.
About 7-10 days after your procedure, the BHRT will kick in, seeping into your bloodstream, and putting you back on the path to the active routine and sex life you're used to.
Most men report feeling improvements in as little as two to four weeks, but full optimization may take up to six months. At every follow-up visit, your levels will be retested and your prescription may need to be tweaked.
Depending on your age and how quickly your body metabolizes the hormones, you may not need a re-pellet for 3-6 months. Most of our patients' can wait 5-6 months before coming in for new pellets. Balancing testosterone levels and other hormones at Novus Anti-Aging Center is a highly customized procedure.
During your initial consultation with your Novus hormone specialist, you'll share your:
A genital exam may help diagnose or rule out non-hormone related medical conditions that could be at the root of your symptoms. Finally, your Novus specialist will perform one or more of the following to assess your base hormone levels:
A small sample of your blood will be sent to a lab for close analysis and assessment of hormone levels. It's not always reliable in detecting all hormones. Why? Your sex hormones in the bloodstream are 95-99% bound to carrier proteins, and in this form are unavailable to target tissues. A blood test may not detect them completely.
Serum is ideal for testing peptide hormones such as FSH, LH, prolactin, fasting insulin, and thyroid hormones, including reverse T3, as well as thyroid antibodies. It is also used to measure sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) and sometimes cortisol binding globulin (CBG).
Saliva testing measures the amount of hormone available in the tissues your hormone is targeting - the bioavailable amount. That's why saliva testing may better detect specific hormone excess or deficiency. It will also help monitor hormone levels throughout your therapy to help tweak them.
A growing body of evidence suggests that saliva tests can more accurately determine levels of the testosterone and DHEA. This non-invasive sampling method requires patients to spit into a plastic tube and allows them to collect saliva at home at specific times to more accurately measure hormone levels.
Your Novus practitioner may administer an FDA-approved urine test called the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) test. FSH manages the menstrual cycle and menopause.
After reviewing all lab results and determining your baseline hormone levels, your specialist will decide whether or not you need BHRT. Even if it's determined that you don't need it at the moment, lifestyle and environmental factors may alter this need over time, so we recommend routine periodic testing.
Hormone tests results are never static. Your hormone levels fluctuate throughout the week, even the day. Level testing merely provides a starting point which helps determine next steps. We'll help you interpret and act on your diagnosis using all of these tests to check your progress - today and for the rest of your treatment cycle. Make sure not to miss any of your scheduled follow-up appointments.
Whether your Low T is causing you the most grief over weight gain or low libido, our discreet, compassionate team at Novus Anti-Aging Center can help you get your hormones - and your life - in order.
We know well the relationship between low testosterone and depression, and we can determine the unique testosterone replacement therapy dosage that'll get you feeling like your young self again. Call us today at (310) 954-1450 or contact us here.