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Men's health

Andropause

Male menopause. Not too long ago, it was a popular joke, something that even some doctors denied was real. But no one’s laughing now. Doctors routinely prescribe bioidentical testosterone replacement therapy for their andropause patients.

Do you have Andropause?

Andropause is the medical term for low levels of testosterone, the primary male sex hormone. It’s not always easy to know if you have it. Your life seems to change. The changes are slow and not always obvious, but familiar symptoms include:

You feel different.

  • You feel awful and have zero energy. The job and activities you once loved aren’t fun anymore. Or, you’re noticing that you’re forgetting things more easily, and it’s hard to sleep.  

  • Your sex life is suffering.
  • You’re more interested in your next bowel movement than you are about sex. And when you do think about sex you worry that you can’t perform.  

  • You’re not as strong as you used to be.
  • You can’t work out as long, or it’s harder to get the results that you’re used to.  

  • You look different.
  • You’ve gained weight, and you’re having trouble losing it. Oh, and did we mention man boobs?


Why it’s important to treat andropause

Testosterone determines muscle strength, bone mass, libido, and sperm production. Men suffering from low testosterone levels can experience any of these unpleasant symptoms listed above.

But, the effects of low testosterone levels can also include the ultimate symptom—a shorter lifespan.

In a long-term, follow-up study, a test group of male patients with low testosterone levels were 33 percent more likely to die of serious diabetes and heart conditions in the 18 years after the survey test than the men with testosterone in the normal range.

The low testosterone patients were also three times more likely to have symptoms related to heart disease and diabetes—waist measurements of more than 40 inches, low HDL cholesterol levels, high triglycerides (levels of fat in the blood), high blood pressure, or high blood glucose (blood sugar).

When does andropause occur?

Men can benefit from testosterone replacement therapy throughout much of their lifetime.

Why?

Testosterone levels decrease throughout much of a man’s life.  After age 30, men’s testosterone levels usually decrease by about 1 percent per year.1 The blood tests of about 20 percent of men in their 60s show evidence of low sex hormones. And by the 80s, about 50 percent of men have this condition.2

Bioidentical Testosterone

The general treatment approach is to use bioidentical testosterone to increase a man’s level to “normal.”  But, identical to what?  

Each of our body’s hormones has a unique 3-D structure that evolved in nature over time. The hormone’s structure is a specialized molecule that operates in a key-and-lock system. For example, nothing happens until a testosterone molecule (the key) fits into a specialized receptor molecule (the lock) located throughout your body. When it does, the body turns on many types of cellular behavior and relieves low T symptoms.

What about synthetic testosterone?
Synthetic hormones don’t have the right structure to provide total relief from low T symptoms. When you take synthetic hormone replacement therapy, the “key” doesn’t exactly fit the receptor design that your body’s cells have evolved to recognize. The result: sometimes you don’t feel quite right, sometimes you have serious side effects.

Bioidentical hormones duplicate the structure of our hormones exactly as they are found in our bodies. Therefore, they work better in our bodies.

Why Settle for Normal?

However, aiming for a testosterone level in the vaguely defined “normal” range is no way to obtain optimal health. Compounded medications avoid the hit-or-miss approach and can help you feel not good or better, but awesome! 

You’re probably not interested in feeling just OK. You want to feel your absolute best, right?  Like everyone, you have a unique testosterone level that will leave you feeling your best. Traditional hormone therapy might give you the low end of normal will not optimize your health and wellbeing.

Compounded medicine ensures that you get exactly the dose of testosterone that’s right for you.

Benefits of Compounding for Low Testosterone

Letting us compound your testosterone medicine provides you with these advantages:

Quality and safety. We use the highest-quality form of testosterone, Testosterone USP. This form of the drug meets the highest quality and safety requirements set up by U.S. medical professionals.

Customized dosage. We tailor the dose to exactly fit your requirements and avoid the “one size fits all” mentality that gives patients less than ideal results.

More affordable. Compounding pharmacies can also deliver medicines at typically a fraction of the cost of the commercially made testosterones that come in limited doses and dosage forms.

More convenient dosing. If your prescriber agrees, we can add other hormones such as DHEA, pregnenolone, and androstenedione to your testosterone to reduce the number of meds you take.

Safe, Affordable, and Easy to Use

We offer Testosterone USP in several forms.

Creams and Gels 

Your doctor will prescribe cream and gel products because your body easily absorbs testosterone applied to the skin. In these forms:

  • The testosterone is gentler on your liver because it’s delivered via the skin, not your digestive system.
  • There is no need to shave the area of application, as you would in a patch
  • The medication can be administered as a single dose, rather than with several patches.
  • There is no skin irritation from patch adhesives used in commercially manufactured products.
  • The cream or gel can be applied two or three times daily to simulate the normal ups and downs of your body rhythms.

Lozenges

Troches are small, soft lozenges that dissolve between your cheek and gum. The tissue in your cheek gradually absorbs the drug and releases it into your bloodstream in about 20 minutes.

This is an excellent alternative to testosterone USP tablets because the drug in lozenge form avoids your liver, where it becomes useless for treating your condition.

Shots into your muscles

Another way to provide testosterone replacement therapy is to apply testosterone cypionate USP into your muscles (usually in your butt).

Although this method is convenient, remember that there’s an important tradeoff: testosterone levels in your blood will vary widely between injections. That makes it difficult to know how much of the drug your body absorbs and uses.


Erectile Dysfunction

There’s nothing like erectile dysfunction (ED) to turn your world upside down. Not just your health is affected. It’s how you work, play, and relate to others—your whole outlook on life. That’s why it’s important to get just the right therapy.

That’s where compounding comes in. It ensures that you get just the right number of meds and delivery system for your optimum health. No rules of thumb or hit-and-miss dosages. With ED, it’s all about you

Recognizing ED

ED is the inability to achieve or sustain an erection suitable for sexual intercourse. It’s the most common sex problem that men report to their doctor. If you have it, you have plenty of company—more than 30 million men in the U.S. alone.

There are many of conditions that increase your chances of having ED. These include:

  • Chronic illnesses that lead to ED, especially diabetes and heart conditions.

  • Drinking too much alcohol

  • Being overweight, especially if you're obese

  • Certain medical treatments, such as prostate surgery or radiation treatment for cancer

  • Injuries, particularly if they damage the nerves or arteries that control erections

  • You take medications, including antidepressants, antihistamines and medications to treat high blood pressure, pain or prostate conditions.

If you have erection trouble from time to time, there’s no need for concern. If your ED is persistent, however, it’s time to call your doctor. See your doctor if you have:

  • Persistent trouble getting or keeping an erection and reduced sexual desire

  • You have concerns about your erections, or you're experiencing other sexual problems

  • You have diabetes, heart disease or another known health condition that might be linked to ED.

  • You have other symptoms along with erectile dysfunction

Treating ED

Chances are, when you doctor first suspects you have ED, you won’t immediately get a prescription for your condition. Instead, your doctor might first make sure you're getting the right treatment for any health conditions (such as diabetes) that could cause ED or make it worse.

Testosterone replacement therapy. An important example of this is low testosterone levels. Some men have ED that’s complicated by low levels of the hormone testosterone. In this situation, you’ll be given bioidentical testosterone replacement therapy as the first step or in combination with other therapies.

After your doctor deals with any underlying causes, you might have to work with him or her to find just the right medication and dosage for you. That’s where we come in.

We also work with your doctor, customizing the medicine, dose, and delivery system that will take care of your ED and bring you back to optimum health.

Tablets and Capsules
Oral medications are a successful ED treatment for many men. They include: sildenafil (Viagra) and tadalafil (Ad circa and Cialis).

These medications enhance the effects of nitric oxide (a natural chemical your body produces), which relaxes muscles in the penis. Relaxed muscles increase blood flow and help you get an erection when you stimulate the penis.

Self-injected Liquids
With this method, each injection is dosed to create an erection lasting no longer than an hour. You use a very fine needle to inject alprostadil (brand names Caverject, Impulse, and Edex) into the base or side of your penis.

Yeah, we understand… But remember, the needle used is very fine, and your doctor will make sure that you get plenty of encouragement and training. In fact, most patients remark that pain from the injection isn’t as bad as they thought it would be.

During Treatments
We can help you watch for possible side effects, which usually include mild bleeding from the injection site, prolonged erection (priapism) and, rarely, formation of fibrous tissue at the injection site.

We understand that ED is a sensitive condition, in more ways than one. You can depend on us to work with your doctor and support you through ED diagnosis and treatment.


Inflamed Prostate

Inflamed prostate gland (prostatitis) is not one condition. It’s four different and hard-to-diagnose illnesses. Each has one or more cause. And men can have more than one form at the same time.

Most often, men with prostatitis are infected with different types of bacteria. But sometimes, the cause includes stress, nerve conditions and structural problems in the lower abdomen.

Men who have more than one form of prostatitis are ideal candidates for compounded medicines. Pharmacists can also customize drugs in many dosages and forms. These include:

  • Capsules

  • Creams and gels applied to the skin.

  • Liquids, lozenges and quick-dissolve tabs taken by mouth

  • Sterile injectable liquids

  • Suppositories

The ability to deliver prostatitis medicines in many doses and forms makes treating prostatitis easier and taking medicines simpler and more convenient.