Avatar universal

Low Testosterone anxiety

About two years ago I was diagnosed with andropause.The uroligist gave me androgel 5mg.He said it might help with the anxiety/Depression I have had for most of my life.

The first dose made me feel incredible for most of the day,but days after that panned out.Long story short.Now,any time I take any form of testosterone it makes my anxiety/depression worse.Even at 1.25mg of androgel.

My endocrinologist said that she has found that people with anxiety/depression often have low T levels and their mood problems get worse when given Testosterone.I have a lot of the symtoms of low T levels and I have had them for years.She also tells me my spine is getting close to ostoperosis,which can be caused by low T levels.I am only 42 and take very good care of myself.My sex drive was always high,even with anxiety/depression,but now it is very low and I have very weak erections.My body aches and I never feel rested.

I have 3 other doctors (specialists) who have never heard of anxiety/depression lowering testosterone and the patient feeling worse when getting T replacement.I had the worse reation to andriol.The patch was not good.

I believe my low T level is a big part of my problem,what should I do?I tried androgel 1.25mg and only lasted one day,because it increased my anxiety/depression.Has anyone heard of anxiety/depression lowering T levels?The endocrinologist said she dose not know what comes first in men, low testosterone or anxiety/depression.

Would like help with this matter..


25 Responses
Avatar universal
Well, I think your low testosterone should come first after all that might be why you are depressed. Testosterone will make you more out going willing to do more things also. Its like the best shot of energy you can get. Did you get your count for your levels? I'm 26 and I'm only at 430 and should be around 800 or so. I am waiting to drop alittle weight before I start on the treatment. I also have depression and anxiety been taking xanax for 10 years and just took myself off it so I can get ready for testosterone. most people are gave like 100 a week well I will be on 500 a week due to the fact I will also use it to gain muscle mass because after 10 years of xanax i never really wanted to do anything but sleep and chill. Got to the point where I am taking 15 2mg xanax bars at a time just to stop an anxiety attack.
Avatar universal
My testosterone results are either so low they are out of the range,or just in the range,very low normal.Like I said, when I take T suppliments I become more depressed and have heightened anxiety.This is the oposite to what should happen.I should say when I took it for a couple of month at 5mg my sex drive was better and my body pains went away.I was on antidepressants at the time too.

About five months ago I tried 1.25mgs only for one day. This is a tinnie dose.I felt hightened anxiety and depression,but I tried it a day after my girlfriend left me.Not good timing for trying it.I am thinking of trying it again at 1.25mgs and give it some time to see if the anxiety lifts.

My endocrinologist said this is the kind of response she sees in patients  that have chronicly low testosterone and anxiety/depression.A worsening of the anxiety/depression when given T therapy.I hope I can prove her wrong for my own sake.

I am wondering if our bodies adapt to the anxiety by lowering T levels?My psychiatrist and other doctors I have talked to have never heared of this theory.

Let me know how you make out with your T therapy..

Thanks for your response....

Avatar universal
You might want to find another Dr. or if she is very open minded and you can talk to her then print the info on TRT off of this site and see if she is willing to follow the protocol layed out here.  www.allthingsmale.com

If your Testosterone is very low then the anxiety you are feeling may be cause by excess Estrogen (E2/Estradiol)  It can cause these symptoms.  When you take Testosterone your body converts it to different hormones.  One of these is Estrogen.  Some people convert more then there fair share of T over to Estrogen.  If this is the case you might want to try and take an medication called Arimidex.  You can try .25mg 3 days a week or .5 twice a  week.  Please get this from your Dr.  It is very strong.

Also,  when you start T replacement there is no middle ground.  You either will need to start it full strength or not at all.  The reason being is when you start adding to your T externally your body will sense this and shut down its own production.   If you are adding just a little external T and your body shuts down its own production you can actually end up with less than you started with.   The amount you are replacing needs to be able to compensate for this lack or production from your own body.  

Testosterone replacement is a tricky deal.  Many Dr's just want to throw some Andro Gel at you and expect not to have to do to much more to get you going.  If you were a woman and this was the pill that might be correct but,  it is much more complicated in a male and takes quite a bit more testing and balancing.  Once you get it correct you should feel great so, don't give up.
Avatar universal
Kenn042, I'm going thru this exact same thing and I can't figure it out. My doctors think I'm nuts. I was doing fine on 150mg per week of injections, then my level got just a little too high, so the doctor tapered me down. THEN I started having anxiety like you wouldn't believe. So I thought it was the T injections doing it, and I stopped cold turkey. I wound up in the hospital with anxiety / panic attacks. Then my doc gave me 100mg to get me back on it, and within 15 minutes I could hardly breath, with my heart racing. I thought my neck was going to explode from my heart pounding.. I thought for sure it was a heart attack. Went to the ER, they sent me home with Xanax. I won't take it. Then my doc tried to get me to take androgel (t gel), and about 20 minutes after I used the gel, I had another panic attack. I can't figure it out.. its not like I am thinking anything in particular.. just minding my own business, then a strange feeling comes over me and I can't breath.. heart starts pounding. WTH!! And my Serum T level is at 185!!!!!!!
Avatar universal
This is happening due to ill-supported adrenals/thyroid. It's important to treat hormonal inbalances in this order: Adrenals, Thyroid then sex hormones (testosterone, etc).

Testosterone lowers cortisol (the "life" hormone) and can in turn cause serious anxiety, heart palpitations, etc.

I am about to leave the house but will try to post some more information later. I will try to give advice if people post blood work/results up.
Avatar universal
I am just starting to learn about all the potential issues with hormonal imbalances.  I have had major anxiety for quite some time and stumbled onto the possibility that it could be caused by hormones.  I've been thru the who antidepressant **** and i still take xanax for the really rough periods.  I am working with a nutritionalist that typically works with women, but says that it can happen in a similar fashion with men.  However, she is against hormone therapy and wants to work through diet and supplements to bring me back into balance, if thats the problem.  I just ordered a home test kit, so we'll see.  I never thought i'd have to deal with this **** in my early 30s!
Avatar universal
hey, I am a 21 year old male. I have normal thyroid and adrenals (Tsh:1.3,cortisolAM 16). I went to the doctor to have my testosterone levels checks after I filled out a questionaire regarding low T. I found out that my levels were on the low end of normal. (Estradiol 20, 400 total T, 9 free t, LH 2.9, FSH 2.6) My doctor started me on 5g of Androgel to try to get my levels higher in the range. After about 2 weeks of being on treatment, I had my blood drawn and found out that my T level had gone to 355,estradiol 22, free T 9.8 and LH and FSH in the same region. I dont understand what has happened here. Am I not absorbing the gel effectively or am I just converting it all to DHT. This week I am trying 7.5gs and im going to see where that takes me but I am so confused. I want to ask my doc about injections but as it is he is going out on a limb givign me the Androgel just to boost me up a little...He is a GP, so far no urologist, endo will treat me. Any suggestions on what is going on? I appreciate it.
Avatar universal
I am a 38 year old male. I've been a sufferer of massive panic attacks and at least mild depression since I was 17 years old. Throughout all that time I've had, at best, erections that were "just" hard enough for intercourse, but usually not. Needless to say, this problem shaped all my relationships and my life. After finally looking to get to the root of it, I found - finally - a really great urologist. After other doctors over twenty years had said "you're fine" (including my pcp just two months ago), this doctor found my T level was at 220 (should be at lowest 300, and up to 1,000). He put me on Testim, but my insurance would not cover it. Instead, I'm now on the injectable T (did first injection last week). Brother, I feel alive for the first time. My erections are harder (not perfect, but better), but way more than this, I have NO PANIC ATTACKS AT ALL. Even the definite trigger events have had no effect. I simply feel naturally brave and "together." I've always worked out, but now I walk into the gym with a purpose, and I'm already packing the muscle on. On one hand, I'm angry that I wasted 20 years as a panic-attack-ridden impotent schmuck. On the other hand, I'm so thrilled I FINALLY found the answer. Dude, drop the female nutritionist (I promise you you're wasting your time), and find a good urologist, get a T test (and insist on a copy of the results), and - when discovered your T is most likely low - insist on the injectable. I'm normally the type to never give advice, but you sound just like me. There is an answer. I'll never go back to the low T/bad erection/depressed/panic-attack-anxiety me again. Best. -Todd
Avatar universal
how did your testosterone treatment work out?
Avatar universal
What were your T levels at?
Avatar universal
I am a 46-year old male. For the most part of my life, I never had any incident of anxiety, panic attack or depression - I was literally the coolest guy on earth, despite a very demanding and competitive job environment. When I was 44, I was diagnosed with low, though still normal testosterone levels (330 ng) and a low sperm count. My wife's doctor suggested that I take 20 mg Nolvadex- a medication that  blocks estrogen receptors. I took the treatment for 18 months, then my sperm count was increased by 8X, so I thought it was time to quit the medication. A few months later, I started having huge healthproblems, like never before in my life: abdominal and back pain, insomnia, very severe anxiety and, perhaps, a mild depression (fortunately, I am still an optimistic person). After having all kinds of tests and getting a low dosage of an antidepressant to help me sleep (not always effectively), I had myself tested for testosterone and found out it has dropped down to 140!

My endocrinologist suggested that I take T-gel (Tostran). I am applying it for 2 days now but do not see any result yet (I am still on the antidepressant, for about a month now). I really feel very bad, it is a very annoying situation.

Anybody knows if it takes some time for the testosterone to build up an efficient concentration in the body. I am 40 lbs overweight, so the extra fat could probably interfere with normal testosterone absorption by the body?
Avatar universal
I believe the testosterone creams take about 2 weeks to give full benefits.
Avatar universal
Thank you! I hope it does so, because  I have suffered soooo much during the last six months.Actually, I feel worse since I started the testosterone treatment!

Do you think the antidepressant (Remeron) interferes with the treatment (e,g, by lowering testosterone)? I would really like to quit taking the antidepressant as soon as possible - I have not suffering from depression but mostly somatic complaints and anxiety.

Thanks again for the info.
Avatar universal
I have also been on this anti depressant for anxiety it did nothing for me, i dont think it would lower your T levels though because its supposed to relieve depression and depression can lower your T levels.

I am waiting to see an endo Dr at the moment, when my free T levels were checked they were 8.8 the lab said they should be between 10 & 28, im only 37 so this is very low.

I have had a rough time myself with aches and pains, no libido, constant nausea and chronic anxiety, is it just me or has anyone else noticed all us guys are mentioning having bad anxiety.

The only med i have had any luck with for my anxiety is valium, it's not a long term fix but atleast it's something to get me by until i hopefully recover.

If the T replacement works for you or you go back onto the other med that helped you dont stop this time unless the DR tells you to, if you have to take it for the rest of your life so be it, i know i would if it meant feeling well again.

Good luck!!!
Avatar universal
I think low testosterone is the cause of anxiety and not the results of it. My problems started after I quit from a 18-month steroid cycle (on Nolvadex), so that was the sole change in my daily habits. Otherwise, I lead a very happy life with a secure and interesting job (I am uni professor) and no important problems so far. So, my anxiety came in totally unexpected, while I have always been virtually invulnerable to stress. By the way, I have never been addicted to anything (I do not smoke and been always a very moderate drinker).

My Dr. told me to quit Remeron, so that we can let the hormone replacement reveal its actual results. In the beginning I had more anxiety, than we lowered the dose (first day now) and feel better. I believe it takes some time for the system to be restored. My only concern is if any permanent damage is done.

Thank you for your support and sharing your experience. Good luck to you, too!!!!
Avatar universal
First you need to have a complete range of tests done before any therapy is started.

Free testosterone
Serum testosterone
Random testosterone
Liver and kidney panel
Thyroid function Fsh....

Also from what I have heard depression and anxiety could be a result of low testosterone. Testosterone therapy shouldn't cause these things. I also heard that therapy is hit and miss regarding which ones work for different people. I think you should see a endocrinologist specializing in reproductive issues. Also you mentioned your girlfriend left you this could be related to the anxiety and depression not the therapy.

Good luck
Avatar universal
Thank you! By the way, my girlfriend did not leave me, this must have been reported by somebody else.But the therapy may be hit and miss, indeed.
Avatar universal
ive been on t gels for about 3 years but get so fed up with having to use it ive given up! I dont care about the fact I have **** now or lost my sex drive im happier without that ****!
Avatar universal
the missing words that have been starred out above are: t1ts & krap!
dont ya just hate censors?
Avatar universal
l have lived for years with the lack of energy back pain and weekness shortness of breath lately it has included soreness of all body parts even my eye lids have been sore after test after test for 15-20 yearsl had finally had enough l was and am suffering anxiety and depression on monday 21/07/08 l walked into my doctor and said enough was enough l was sick for the sorness and needed it to stop. To his credit
he was running through a list of tests and wanted to see me to draw some more bloods today results came back 24/07/08 and testosterone levels are very low it seems very hard to get my head around the facts that this could be the cause of 20 years of felling so bad started my injections today  sustanon 250x fortnightly for six weeks then retest levels and see where we go from there will keep you all up to date as days go by thanks for takeing the time regards michael
Avatar universal
allopregnanolone is an important nuerosteroid in the brain, with barbituate-like effect on GABA receptors.  It reduces anxiety and creates calm at a time of stress.  The consumption of alcohol, in the presence of DHT, can increase allopregnanolone, leading to lowered stress and reducing anxiety.  So, you might consider cutting out any medicines that reduce DHT (propecia or its equivalents), and taking a drink once a day, probably red wine because it has resveratrol and might help you live longer, and because alcohol + DHT = lowered stress.  Just don't overdo it.
873425 tn?1241623977
Kenn a lot of guys who start on Hormone Replacement report the same problem.  They feel good for a short time and crash (I did as well)  What happens when you start HRT is that your Testicles are still doing what they can and you "add" hormones giving you a higher level.  Then by using HRT you signals that tell the testicles to produce shut off (The Testicles go into Idle mode) and the only hormone you have is what you add.  This can result in you having the same level (Or even in some cases slightly lower)

What can you do?  Your doctor should be getting new labs a couple of weeks after starting you on drugs like Androgel, Testim or Androderm(Patches).  With injections it might be a month or ?  These labs allow him/her to adjust the dose.  At the same time you must be reporting your symptoms.  By that are you feeling better?  mood?  Energy?  Depression better or worse?  When?  Anxiety?  Decision making?  All that...  The doctor will factor that in because there are a range of "normal" and your doctor may wish to start (At least) in the bottom of normal.  But if its not happening they can put you in the middle or even upper end of normal.  

Be proactive!

And just my two cents worth.  Don't follow the "allthingsmale" advice.  I talked with my doctors and a lot of this is off label and not well tested or studied for long term safety.  If you want a more mainstream approach read "The Testosterone Syndrome" by Dr E. Shrippen and William Fryer.  Also download a copy of the AACE Guidelines to Male Hypogonadism 2002 which is the blueprint that doctors use to treat men with testicular / hormone problems.

Good luck!
919239 tn?1269394658
I have had depression for many yrs. (15+) I have taken every anti-depressant you can name ,with no results. I went to a free testosterone blood check in April 2005. My # was 121 which my regular M.D. said was low. I was put on AndroGel 1% & noticed little differance (at $280.00 per month now -no insurance)  I contacted Palm Beach Life Extension, went for a very thorough blood panel, and should get results today...5-27-09.  I told the consultant that if mine is low, I want to start the max. injections tomorrow.  As bad as I feel, I am ready to try anything!   ANYBODY  HAVE  ADVICE/ HELP ????
Avatar universal
Anyone consider TestoJack(Tongkat Ali)? It is a natural herb that supposedly stimulates testosterone increase but doesn't add any directly. If this works it should not cause the body's regular hormones to shutdown.

By the way, my total testosterone is 518ng/ml reference range is 241-827. I am 26 year old male. Same problems as others. Panic attacks and phobias whole life, tiredness, high sex drive but only an Ok erection(hard but could be harder)

Any ideas?
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Men's Health Community

Top Men's Health Answerers
1622896 tn?1562364967
London, United Kingdom
139792 tn?1498585650
Indore, India
11369760 tn?1449504372
Southwest , MI
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
STDs can't be transmitted by casual contact, like hugging or touching.
Syphilis is an STD that is transmitted by oral, genital and anal sex.
Discharge often isn't normal, and could mean an infection or an STD.
Chlamydia, an STI, often has no symptoms, but must be treated.
Bumps in the genital area might be STDs, but are usually not serious.
Get the facts about this disease that affects more than 240,000 men each year.