Testosterone & Erectile Dysfunction (ED) | menMD

Testosterone Replacement for Erectile Dysfunction

Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) can provide several benefits including increased sex drive and energy. Some evidence also suggests testosterone replacement therapy can also lead to increased bone strength, improved blood sugar control, and a longer lifespan.

Testosterone can be used to treat erectile dysfunction when the main cause is an abnormal decrease in the body’s testosterone level, also known as hypogonadism or andropause. Hypogonadism in a man is referred to as a decrease in either or both of the two major functions of the testicles: sperm and testosterone production. Primary male hypogonadism is caused by testicular dysfunction and can be congenital or develop as a man ages.

How does it help ED?

Testosterone works by increasing libido and is necessary to develop an erection. Testosterone reverses the effects of apoptosis (cellular death) in the cavernosal smooth muscle cells. This allows hypogonadal men to improve their sexual function and increase response to ED treatments. According to a study done by Clinical Endocrinology, using testosterone in conjunction with PDE5 Inhibitors can improve the erectile response by increasing blood flow.

Types of Testosterone Replacement Therapy

There are several types of testosterone therapy including nasal sprays, topical gels that are rubbed into the skin, intramuscular injections, or pellets, which are inserted by a trained healthcare provider just beneath the skin. Choosing the type of testosterone therapy to use is a decision that should take several factors into account. Consideration should be given to the physician’s experience and preference, but also your preference.

Testosterone Cypionate Injection

Testosterone cypionate injections are safe and effective. Injections are given into the muscle tissue, usually once a week or at longer intervals, as directed by your physician. You or a family member can learn to give TRT injections at home. If you’re uncomfortable giving yourself injections, a nurse or doctor can give the injections.

Testosterone Gel Therapy

Testosterone gel therapy from menMD’s pharmacy partner is applied with an applicator, usually once a day, or as directed by your doctor. The gel is rubbed into the skin on your upper arm or shoulder. As the gel dries, testosterone is absorbed through your skin. Gel application of TRT appears to cause fewer skin reactions than patches do. Avoid swimming, bathing, showering, or sweating for 2 hours after application. A potential side effect of the gel is the possibility of transferring the medication to another person. Avoid skin-to-skin contact until the gel is completely dry or cover the area after an application.

Results

There is no immediate effect from testosterone cypionate injections or topical gel. Over several weeks, after starting or changing dosage, your body will adjust to the new level of testosterone. Your doctor will help set treatment goals to measure your response while using testosterone. Your doctor will likely want to see you every 3 – 6 months to conduct blood tests required to measure the level of testosterone in your body.

Side Effects

Testosterone therapy carries various risks, including contributing to sleep apnea, stimulating noncancerous growth of the prostate, enlarging breasts, limiting sperm production, stimulating growth of existing prostate cancer and blood clots forming in the veins. Men with prostate cancer are not candidates for testosterone replacement therapy.

Helpful Articles

  • DHEA and Men’s Health - In this article Dr. Houman discusses how reduced levels of DHEA impact a man's sexual, mental, and physical health as he ages, and what you can do to supplement your body's DHEA production.
  • Multi-dose Vials and the 28-day Sterility Rule - In this article Patrick Carpenter, Pharmacist discusses safety guidelines for the use of injectable medicines in multi-dose vials.
  • Low Testosterone and Your Sexual and Reproductive Health - In this article Dr. Dhir discusses Low T's impact on sexual and reproductive health, plus treatment options and alternatives for couples planning to have children
  • Testosterone Hormone Replacement Therapy - In this article Dr. Cohen discusses the role testosterone plays in growth and development as men age, severe symptoms caused by a sudden drop in testosterone, and hormone supplementation therapies that help.

Instructions & Tips

Testosterone Gel
Testosterone Cypionate Injection Instructions

Available Options

Testosterone Cypionate

Testosterone Injections

Available in 3cc and 1cc vial sizes to optimize treatment cost.

Self-injection syringes are available for purchase

Testosterone Gel

Testosterone Gel

Available in metered dose applicator for easy and secure handling.

May be a good alternative for patients opposed to Testosterone Cypionate injections.

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