I was recently advise by my endocronologist to have an MRI to check why my testerone level is so low (155). I have hot flashes at night. I also have a running nose when I awake in the morning. What is involved with the MRI. Are there other causes for low testerone. I was told by my endo that there are gels and patches to raise my testerone level. However since I had a Turp 10 years ago my urologist is also concerned that any hormone replacement thera[y can ncrease the chance of prostate cancer. I am confused because the risks of various diseases seems to be greater then the risk of prostate cancer. I am 67 years old.
They are looking at your pituitary. The pituitary is the master gland and it basically tells the rest of the body to release the chemicals to produce the correct amount of testosterone.
Testosterone comes from your testes as well as from the adrenal glands so they should check out the adrenals as well. Both estrogen and testosterone are redundant systems. Estrogen and testosterone are very related (you know how when a baby is formed, the same parts go to form the ovaries and testes, so it just a matter of how much of each hormone which gives us characteristics). There are also different testosterone tests to run, not just plain testosterone (my docs like bioavailable best) to really show what is up. You need DHEA sulfate tested as well as sex binding hormones to show the whole gamut. What is your LH and FSH?
Your doc needs to check estrogen levels in you as well (which is why you may be having the hot flashes). It happens that E and T get messed up. I do not have adrenals and I had my ovaries removed (I am a diseased thing!) and anyway, when I went to replace my estrogen to keep my bones in shape, I managed to make only... testosterone! Since I am a woman (I think...), this was not happy... so it took a bit of playing around by my endo to get my levels up but now I have low T.
Anyway, my point is that you need both, you need a decent level, you need it for bones, you need it for overall mood and for a lot of things. There is some risk yes, but you need to discuss with your doctor the risk vs benefit and also try to get dosed so that you are getting enough for benefit and reduce the risk. This is going to take a bit of experimenting so please have patience with it.
Make sure you get an endo that really knows what they are doing - and that the MRI is done properly - with and without contrast, and dynamic, that they take pictures which the MRI is going - that is a proper pituitary MRI. I had two pituitary tumors and one grew back - I get them and know. A neuro-endo is best as a normal endo may not know how to treat the entire body.
No, I am not a doctor. I am a patient that has been through the wringer. I went to a lot of bad doctors who did minimal testing and said I was fine and to told ignore my pituitary tumor and endocrine issues.
Finally after many years, I got very sick, finally found other patients like me, found better doctors and learned more. It was too late, in my opinion, as my body had degraded from being sick too long, and so now I am disabled from being "fine".
I don't want anyone to be like me. Doctors can run one test, but fail to understand or remember that the system IS a system and that there are redundancies, loops and other glands that are effected and so to test one hormone is just... ineffective.
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