If you watch network TV, especially late at night, you are likely to be bombarded with adverts for testosterone replacement therapy (TRT).
The way the commercials talk about it makes it seem like a gift from the gods.
Men are supposed to feel younger, have more energy, and experience an increased sex drive if they use TRT
But messing with human hormones by using artificial replacements (or even bioidentical replacements) is almost never as good an idea as it looks in the ads.
Usually, hormone replacement therapies have some pretty nasty side effects that can cause loads of problems.
And testosterone is no exception.
Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is aggressively marketed.
Before we get into all of the details, it’s important to note that this is not an advice to go off any treatments without talking to your doctor.
This information is based on research and our goal is to tell you the reality of the information that’s available in the scientific literature—the information that Big Pharma buries.
The reality is that most men have normal testosterone levels.
And, while there are lots of things that guys can do to raise their testosterone naturally, very few men should actually be taking TRT.
However, the aggressive marketing by Big Pharma has me all over the place asking their doctors for this dangerous treatment.
From an article in Harvard Men’s Health Watch:
“A loophole in FDA regulations allows ‘pharma’ marketers to urge men to talk to their doctors if they have certain ‘possible signs’ that mean they could need low T treatment. ‘Virtually everybody asks about this now because the direct-to-consumer marketing is so aggressive,’ says Dr. Michael O’Leary, a urologist at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital. ‘Tons of men who would never have asked me about it before started to do so when they saw ads that say ‘Do you feel tired?’”
The problem with this aggressive approach by Big Pharma trying to push treatments on men is that TRT has serious negative side effects…
These side effects aren’t very well disclosed and your doctor may not tell you about them.
TRT is linked to an increase in heart attack and stroke.
In a study of over 15,000 men in the UK, researchers found that men who used TRT had an eye-popping 21% higher chance of having a cardiovascular event.
That is a BIG extra risk of a heart attack or other related event.
“Users of TRT had a 21% greater risk of cardiovascular events compared with nonusers, corresponding to an additional 128 events.”
It also increased the risk of stroke and TIAs (mini-strokes). Strokes can permanently disable you, so…no thanks.
“Our findings show that the use of TRT was associated with an increased risk of stroke, TIAs, or cardiac arrest during the first two years of use…”
In addition to these big problems, a small portion of men also experience other immediate side effects.
“A relatively small number of men experience immediate side effects of testosterone supplementation treatment such as acne, disturbed breathing while sleeping, breast swelling or tenderness, or swelling in the ankles. Doctors also watch out for high red blood cell counts, which could increase the risk of clotting.”
TRT should only be considered if you suffered an accident or condition that stops your natural testosterone production or makes it far too low, and it’s not fixable through other means.
There ARE ways to boost testosterone -- that actually work and are completely safe.
When you boost your testosterone naturally, you can get the same benefits they advertise in the commercials.
Things like higher energy levels, higher sex drive, and an easier ability to gain muscle mass.
The bottom line: Before you supplement with hormones like TRT you should ALWAYS give the documented side effects a good, long look and decide if the risk is worth it.