NO testosterone? Update to dr. visit

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Star*, Jun 26, 2009.

  1. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Well isn't this interesting and confusing. I got a call yesterday (thanks DF and your methadone fog brain) to call the doctor about some of the tests that were back. He tells me today at 4:45. Nice. :surprise:

    The nurse said that one of the hormone tests showed that I have virtually no testosterone.:confused: Now I get to go for some all morning glucose tolerance test. :faint:

    How can you not have testosterone in your system and be such a raging banshee? :919Mad: Guess it explains why I can't loose weight -but why a GTT?

    All day long I keep getting the jitters - and I'm not hungry at all. I had to force myself to eat (OKAY THIS IS A GOOD THING) but I feel like I've had 12 cups of coffee - then I eat and I'm okay - then jitters. You suppose this is a side effect of the welbutrin or topomax? Actually I kinda like it - but not for all day. lol
  2. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Well this is interesting, Starbie. Who knew? Apparently, there's a connection between low testosterone, diabetes type 2 (though most of the articles I found tied it into men with- low levels rather than women), osteoporosis, and depression.

    Google "low testosterone in women".

    Wonder if the jitteriness is hypoglycemia?

    Sheesh - took them long enough to get to the cause of this stuff. Hope they have you feeling better soon!!
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Yup sounds like you may have diabetes type 2 dear.

    The trick when you get the jitters is to eat something, but be careful what it is you eat. Nichole would eat a half banana and peanut butter. Banana raised the blood sugar quickly, peanut butter helped keep it there longer. Or peanut butter crackers. But I always tried to couple a carb with a protein.

    When I get the low blood sugar jitters I go for a boiled egg and a piece of toast. Unfortunately I'm one of those weird people who actually forget to eat.....ummm sometimes for a couple of days, especially if it's really hot. Heat kills my appetite.

    Sounds like you're getting some answers. Oh, and having low blood sugar/high blood sugar can make a person crabby as all hades. :)

  4. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am glad that df finally remembered to tell you! (Does he write down messages at all? If you can get him to write messages down, pick someplace like the bathroom mirror or over the coffeepot to post them. Saved my parent's marriage when Dad was home in the summer!)

    The low testosterone can TOTALLY make you crabby. Also can contribute to low energy levels. husband finally got his raised naturally and got the all clear to stop taking the gel (it is available in a rub on gel that is very easy to handle).

    It could very well be diabetes. It is important not to skip the test even though it will make you feel HORRIBLE. I have had to do a couple - you probably had one while you were pregnant with Dude.

    I hope they get some answers soon. More answers, i should say. I am glad the doctor is aggressive on this so far.

    Gentle hugs, and get that man some neon colored postit notes to put messages on!
  5. mrscatinthehat

    mrscatinthehat Seussical

    A start of answers is the right direction. Hope you continue to find out more. Hope df gets his hand to work on messages or get him a digital recorder to talk the message into.

  6. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    I know absolutely nothing about testoterone or diabetes. :( Wish I could be of help.

    Now sticky notes, on the other hand, are my best friend. I have them absolutely EVERYWHERE in the house. I'd forget to get up in the morning if I didn't have one stuck to my forehead.

  7. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    I think I would go in and slap that other crackpot doctor up the side of the head for not diagnosing this sooner.

    I'm hypoglycemic. I get the shakes really, really bad when I haven't eaten or eaten something that causes my sugar to bottom out fast (like cereal). Eat small meals with protein, like eggs, nuts, low fat meats, chicken etc.

    Good luck with the bloodwork today. Bring something that you can eat, like a protein bar, afterward. When I had that bloodwork done, I ended up having my sugar go so low that I didn't remember half the day afterward.
  8. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I also have next to none or no Testosterone in my body. For me it is because of the three glands that produce it in my body have failed. First my adrenal glands, then my ovaries, and lastly my thyroid.

    I did think of taking a replacement at one time due to my low energy levels but then for some reason (I can't remember now) I decided not to. I've thought about it off and on through the years.

    I hope they are finally on the path to figuring things out. Hugs.
  9. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Star, it's heading for midnight here or I'd write a longer reply. I NEED to get some sleep. However, this is something I have a little understanding of.

    In the meantime (while I sleep) do some online searching on pituitary function and endocrinology. The way the pituitary works can be complex, the hormones sort of interconnect. Testosteroone seems to be a marker for a lot of interesting pituitary function. The pituitary has been described as the hormonal egulator of the body, it is a walnut-sized gland that nestles in the intersection of a line between your eyes and between your ears, rught underneath the brain (as if slung in a hammock). Right above it is the hypothalamus, which itself regulates the pituitary. All hormones manufactured in the body also feed back to the pituitary and the hypothalamus, to tell it whether or not the rest of the body is functioning. So any disorder at such a basic level can have wide-reaching effects on a number of endocrine levels.

    But like a lot of hormonal problems, finding out about it means you can then identify WHAT is wrong and then bwgin to do something about it. The diabetes Type II thing - it's the next-easiest to identify and also if present, benefits from fastest intervention. Another thing to check out will be cortisol levels.

    I'll have to sleep on it for more, but that should keep you going.

    Don't panic. husband has been living with a disordered pituitary for years now and still doesn't have Type II diabetes. But yes, it could explain the difficulty in losing weight. However, it can be done, even with a problem pituitary.

    Talk later. Chin up! (or should I say, chins up? I stole the line from "The Mirror Crack'd", Agatha Christie movie with Kim Novak delivering that line to Elizabeth taylor, I think it was).

  10. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Chins up? OMG Marg - lol......

    Thanks all - they are doing cortisol level tests and a few years ago - many years ago I did have an MRI to test my brain for tumor. Most painful test I've ever had. I asked for an 8x10 gloss to send to my Mother to prove once and for all that yes, I DO have a brain. She failed to see the humor. All those years of hearing "Do you HAVE a brain in that pretty little head of yours? Prompted me to do so.

    I am also insulin resistant so if I have dia-beeeeee-teeeus...(said like Wilfred Brimlee (lol) what then? shots? I hate shots...:anxious: - will I loose weight?

    WO I too thought well if I take testosterone vs. not whats the difference. Then I had visions of growing an adams apple, beard and ...well other things came to mind----like, you know - a need to leave my clothes all over the place and the toilet seat up. The travesty of it all.

    Thanks all - I'll keep you updated. Loth - Good idea on the power bar - I'll get one for after - thanks.

    Abbers - I have billions of post it notes (no exaggeration) but it's just some days good some days bad on methadone. Most days he's good...that day was just not a good one.
  11. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    Oooh! Oooh! I'll do it!!! :devil:
  12. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It


    I don't know about how they will treat the diabetes IF you have it. They CAN treat the no testosterone VERY easily. For the last few years husband has had low testosterone. I think there is an oral version, but there is also a rub on testosterone.

    It comes in 2 forms. husband has little packets (like the ketchup packet from the McD's drive thru) that he just tears open and rubs on. In case that provides too much testosterone, it also comes in a pump form (reminded me of the pump toothpaste thingys, or of some of the hair gel pumps) that delivers the same amount each pump.

    It seems to me that maybe replacing the testosterone might help if you have diabetes. Not sure if it would work instead of insulin shots, but it is worth asking aboutl

    I know you are worried. But it means you are SO MUCH closer to feeling wonderful!!! I think your doctor deserves a flower. Or a plate of cookies (cooked before you know if you have diabetes - one last fling, so to speak!)

    Many hugs.
  13. graceupongrace

    graceupongrace New Member


    Good luck with the testing! The protein bar is a really good idea. That way, you won't even have to wait until you can drive somewhere to eat. And if you can, it might be a good idea to plan an easy afternoon. I had the GTT with both pregnancies, and I felt pretty grouchy the rest of the day.

    Keep us posted on the results.
  14. eekysign

    eekysign New Member

    Star, I've got an endocrine disorder that manifests with insulin resistance, so they've got me on metformin (glucophage), which are pills, not shots. I'm not even pre-diabetic, but since I've started taking it, I've lost 40lbs with-o changing my diet/exercise patterns. Insulin resistance is hoovery. I know they give met for Type 2, too.
  15. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member will laugh. Tony saw an add on tv for adrenal fatigue and wanted to know if I could have that. I said no dear, I dont have every darned disorder that is advertised. I know other people who have looked into that problem and I am fairly certain that is not one of my problems. Unlike what you may think of me, I do not develope every symptom I hear about! Ugh.
  16. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    Star, you'll know you've had too much if you suddenly develop the irresistable urge to claim the TV remote as your very own (MINE! MINE! MINE!), if you become resistant to asking for directions when driving no matter how lost you are, and if you get the urge to buy duct tape by the case!
  17. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Oh, I do like the bit about the TV remotes.

    But then - I'm spoiled, I'm married to a SNAG. The worst he does with the remote is leaves it tucked down beside his seat so I can't find it until I look there. But he doesn't hog it or channel-hop.

    About possible pituitary insufficiency - if your hormone levels are low, then it's easily fixed with hormone replacement terapy. When we hear the HRT words, we think of female hormones, but technically insulin is a form of HRT also.

    It's easy to replace stuff that's not there in enough quantity. it's muchmore difficult to block what is there in too high a level. But that doesn't sound like your problem.

    Maybe your problem is just the low testosterone. If so, there are many ways you can take it. It will dpeend on what works best for you, and also on WHY your levels are low.

    Someone in our extended family has a general pituitary problem, but it is dealt with by just taking testosterone. If he is overdue for his injections then EVERYTHING begins to drop, including cortisol. And THAT can be dangerous. But on testosterone, his cortisol levels (and everything else) are normal. Despite low testosterone, he is all male and I'm told there is no problem with his sexual function (his wife assured me). But she says that when his levels are low, he seems very brain-foggy and can't cope with stress; he gets easily upset and even teary (which sounds to me like low cortisol).

    Years ago my doctor worried that I had a pituitary tumour. The problem wasn't low hormone levels, it was levels that were too high. In my case, I was lactating even before I'd ever been pregnant. Blood tests showed high prolactin levels so I had X-rays to see if the pituitary fossa (that part of the inner skull where the pituitary sits) was out of shape. This was before CT scans or MRIs. The X-rays were normal so nothing was ever done.

    Generally if your levels are low, it's not a tumour in the pituitary. It may not even be a pituitary problem - diabetes isn't. However, other hormones can affect insulin (in either direction). Growth Hormone, especially - it is very similar chemically to prolactin plus it is released from the same part of the pituitary. Growth Hormone is also connected to insulin - if you think about it logically, when a kid is growing fast, his body needs energy to fuel the growth process. The body builds muscle form protein, bone from calcium and other minerals but the processes need fuel to make it all work, like a motor needs energy to run. So when Growth Hormone is secreted, so is insulin (and other related hormones). That's why people with pituitary gigantism often develop diabetes. For example, I believe Robert Wadlow died young because he developed diabetes in the days before there was a treatment. I could be wrong there, I haven't looked it up.

    Endocrinology is fascinating. It's like evolutionary theory - it's both complex and simple, depending on how you look at it.

    IN your case, Star, I'm glad they're testing for a number of hormones.

    Tje possible connection to insulin resistance in your case - it would be the imbalance of female hormones which do seem to be connected to insulin resistance. But you can work on that independdently. I suspect my own testosterone levels are low - I'm menopausal and not on HRT (it wassending my blood pressure up). I probably should be doing something and you've reminded me to get my own levels checked out.

    BUT - despite this, I fixed my own insulin resistance AND lost a lot of weight, without being in hormonal balance.

    I did write about it in Healthy Living, but I'll quickly re-cap here.

    I had to do something - my liver was a mess, the doctor said that I was right on the edge of diabetes (one GP actually said I WAS diabetic, based on my test results). I was told to cut calorie intake. Now, I have been on too many diets over the years and even had dieticians advise me. And I always ended up worse off. The dieticians told me to eat MORE - utterly stupid. I don't exercise enough, because I am disabled. I do what I can but I know it's never enough. So although the best wway to lsoe weight and fix insulin resistance is through exercise, I couldn't got hat way. I HAD to cut calories.

    So I got the assurance from the doctor - forget about dietician advice and simply cut back and cut back, until the weight comes off.
    I said, "But that will require me to cut back way below what is considered a healthy diet."
    My doctor said, "This calls for desperate measures. Whatever it takes. Do it."

    So I did. It wasn't easy. I did take those diet pills that are supposed to stop your body going into famine mode when you diet - but when I stopped taking them, I kept losing weight about the same amount, so with hindsight I don't think the pills did anything much at all.
    I did my best to keep what I DID eat to be balanced, but I also took calcium and multivitamins because I KNEW I wasn't eating enough.

    After six months I'd lost 20 Kg. A year, I'd lost another 5 Kg. My liver tests were still almost as bad (they take a lot longer to come back to normal - now, 18 months later, they are the best they've been in decades) but after 6 months my insulin resistance was gone.

    My aim was to help my liver (and thereby feel a lot better) and to fix the insulin resistance. The weight loss was a nice bonus.

    ANy other hormonal stuff - it's extra. You don't have Occupational Therapist (OT) fix the hormal imbalance first, you can work on the insulin problem independently, through diet. But you WILL do better if you have a good gastroenterologist (or endocriologist) supporting you in this. because what I found - although I had good support from family and some friends, I DID get a lot of flak from some people as I had to be SO obsessive about my diet. easy child was worried that I was becoming anorexic, because I began cooking lots of fattening food FOR EVERYONE ELSE and doing a few other things people thought was weird. But it helped me, because I felt like I was indulging even when I wasn't. I know from past experience, when I diet I get obsessed with food.

    So what I suggest - go ahead with all the tests and checks on the hormonal stuff. But also try the diet. Do it under medical supervision. I can't promise it will turn around the insulin resistance, but it certainly can't hurt. it IS your best chance and I'm living proof that it can happen, even when your hormones are a mess.

    Also, don't try to beat my record or anything else - you have to do this for yourself, and ANY improvement, ANY progress, is a bonus. You are you, with your own unique physiology and health issues. What you do is for you.

    Where I am now - I got put on prednisone. MY weight loss stopped and began to reverse. I've gained back about three kilos, then I got sick (whooping cough, it seems) and now have a broken rib. I'm about to go for a bone scan but at least I'm coming off prednisone at last. It will take the next two months. I'm hoping I can lose those three kilos again. But apart from that - my diet was on the maintenance phase and working well.

    The thing is - for reasons independent of the weight loss etc, my health is a mess. But my insulin resistance and liver tests are still great. Which is a good thing - I have enough to worry about!

    Star, you can do whatever you need to. After all you've been through - you aren't going to let your own body beat you into submission.

  18. ML

    ML Guest

    Star I wish I could have found that dang book because it talked about what Marg was saying, about the relationships between the various hormones and how if one is off it could be part of a bigger picture. I am interested in how your other tests come back too.

    Looking forward to updates xo Love, ML
  19. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Shucks sorry lady. But it sounds like there are a lot here who are very well informed about testosterone, kind of scary!
    You are in good hands...

    And the Topamax could be making you extra jittery... it kicks me up a notch at times. especially early in the day. I know it says can make you sleepy/drowsy, but it does not make me drowsy.
    I take mine in the a.m. so it doesn't keep me awake.

    I am glad you are finding this carp out though... we may have an even feistier Star* soon!!! Chins, whiskers, adams apple and all! ;)
  20. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Star, yes, it could be the medications AND low blood sugar.
    Please, please be careful with-the testosterone, if your doctor prescribes it. Take a very low dose to start. I have a good friend who stroked out on it (fell off a ladder while she was painting) and she's darn lucky she has no lasting effects.
    I'm hypoglycemic, too, and there are worse things than having to eat every 2 or 3 hrs. :)
    I hope you don't have to use needles, but again, it's better than the alternative, which is having to live in turmoil. Imagine having what you have, but living 300yrs ago. That's always the way I look at it. :)