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Making TRT Labs Understandable (an easy-to-read table format)

Updated: Nov 26, 2023


Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) Bring Balance

 

The body is a symbiotic flow of electrical signals, mechanical movements, neural signals, and hormone feedback loops. Without balance, people often feel "not right," "off," with "brain fog" and generally "unwell."


We order labs at Vitali-T Men's Health & Testosterone Clinic before and during Testosterone Replacement Therapy (or TRT for short). We strive for a good clinical picture of your hormone balance but also attempt to keep cost-effectiveness in mind.


We use your symptoms and the results of your lab tests to see if TRT might be appropriate for you. We treat you based on your symptoms, and our goal is to get you hormonally optimized.


Here's a table of the lab tests we order and what they each mean, in layman's terms (everyone speaks the language of laymen, right?!).


Lab Test

Meaning

Total Testosterone

​The total amount of testosterone in your body, both usable and non-usable.

Free Testosterone

The level of testosterone in your body that is available for use. It is "bioavailable." This is loosely bound to albumin protein and free or not bound. Free T can be used in the cells.

Hematocrit (part of CBC lab order)

This is a percentage of blood that is red blood cells. We monitor this to ensure your blood does not get too viscous and thick, where one could form blood clots.

Estradiol | Estrogen | E2

This is estrogen in the body. We monitor this as it can become elevated in men for multiple reasons. Two reasons we consider are weight gain and TRT.

Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA)

This is a protein produced by the prostate. We monitor this while men are on TRT if they are older than 40 years old. This can go up but usually drops back to baseline in men on TRT.

Sex Hormone Binding Globulin ( SHBG)

This protein has a very high affinity (like a magnet) for testosterone. It causes free testosterone to become bound and unusable. Albumin does the same thing to a lesser degree. The number one reason this becomes elevated is due to age.

​FSH & LH

This is follicular stimulating and luteinizing hormone. FSH is released from a gland in the brain to tell the testes to make sperm. LH is released by the same part of the brain that tells the testes to make testosterone. We test these only once. When on TRT, the levels will be zero. This can be ameliorated if a man chooses an adjunct with TRT, such as hCG or clomiphene, an injection, or an oral pill, respectively.

​Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH)

This is how your brain tells your thyroid to ramp up or down your metabolism. If this is high, then the thyroid gland is not responding and is hypo-functioning, a sign of possible hypothyroidism.

Vitamin D Levels

Adequate vitamin D from the sun or taken orally helps with bone and brain health, interplays with calcium and phosporous and is an anti-inflamatory and immune system enhancer.

​DHEA-S

​This is responsible for male sex characteristics during puberty. If men have lower libido, low DHEA levels might be to blame. It can help aging skin look younger if taken exogenously (pill or tablet).

Vitamin B12

​B12 helps with energy, mood, nerve health, cognition, and digestion. It does help testicular function, sperm motility, and morphology.


Of course, we have simplified these labs to help make them understandable. There is much more to them, but at least the aforementioned table makes them digestible, easy to read, and, most importantly, understandable.


Complete the Contact Form, the Enroll form, or call for a free evaluation of your lab results.





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