interpreting a blood test for testosterone

I got a result of 3.9 nmol; the report didn't give any background except to say that this was "below the range" and "Levels do vary throughout the day and can also be affected by alcohol and some pain medications". (I'm 31)

I will see my doc about it when I'm back home, but how does this break down? Who would this be a 'normal' range for, and is this fixably below average?
Thanks,
 

Khan

Kingfisher
Gold Member
I use this chart that shows testosterone levels by age:

testosterone-by-age.jpg


As you can see from the chart, 3.9 nmol/L is an extremely low testosterone level. But you didn't provide any details about the test or about yourself, so there might be something else involved. Tell me the following - at what time of the day did you take the test, and how much hours of sleep did you get the night before? Also, what are your lifestyle habits? Nutrition, physical activity etc.
 
Cheers for the chart, that doesn't look good by contrast.
Took the test in the late afternoon, maybe 6.30? I didn't get my full seven hours the night before, maybe five or six.
I am diabetic (insulin shots), at healthy weight for my height though i carry some extra round my waist. I avoid junk and eat lots of veggies as an aide to stable blood sugar, I definitely get my five a day. I'm reasonably active and i'm on my feet most of my working day, and though I don't do strenuous exercise as much as I should, I do free weights and calisthenics occasionally (average of once a week, though getting better). Besides long walks I hadn't been active for several days before the test.
 
Khan said:
I use this chart that shows testosterone levels by age:

testosterone-by-age.jpg


As you can see from the chart, 3.9 nmol/L is an extremely low testosterone level. But you didn't provide any details about the test or about yourself, so there might be something else involved. Tell me the following - at what time of the day did you take the test, and how much hours of sleep did you get the night before? Also, what are your lifestyle habits? Nutrition, physical activity etc.


Any suggestions on how to bring low test up to a doctor?
 

Engineer

Kingfisher
Gold Member
Look up the symptoms and complain that you have: low sex drive, poor sleep, low energy, etc. Be prepared to have them tell you you're fine and don't need it, in which case you can go to a private facility.

There are a lot of testosterone threads you can search here of RVF.
 

Khan

Kingfisher
Gold Member
If possible, find a male physician. If you do have symptoms similar to what Engineer described, a male doctor is much more likely to understand your situation. I think a female doctor would just go by the book and tell you "everything is fine, don't worry".

However, I now see that you took the test in the late afternoon. Big mistake! Men's bodies produce testosterone during the night; it's an evolutionary adaptation to make us prepared for the challenges of the day ahead (on a side note, that explains the 'morning wood' phenomenon - your body is filled with T when you wake up). During the day your T levels will slowly decline, so taking the test in the evening is the worst possible time to do this. The best time to take a T measurement is early in the morning.

My suggestion would be to repeat the test. Get a good night sleep (this is also very important; poor quality of sleep disrupts the production of T) and head to the lab as soon as you wake up. That should give you a more accurate estimate of your T levels.

It's also important to stress that testosterone levels fluctuate on a daily basis as well. So a single test, even if done properly, will not provide you with accurate data. Ideally, you should be taking measurements on a monthly or three-monthly basis. Doing a series of tests over the course of one week would also be a good option, as it would give you an insight into your daily fluctuations and average levels. I personally measure my T levels every six months.
 

KidA

Pigeon
Got my bloodwork back today- only tested total and free T to get a better idea of what I should test moving forward.

Total Testosterone- 616 ng/dL (ref. range 348-1197 ng/dL)
Free Testosterone- 8.8 pg/mL (ref. range 9.3-26.5 pg/mL)

Anyone have any experience with this- "normal" total T but very low free T?

For reference- 25 y/o, thin, eat well + exercise.

Symptoms:


  • low overall energy/motivation (esp. in afternoon)

  • poor workout recovery

  • libido fairly good but could certainly be better

  • somewhat poor sleep

  • no ED issues
 

KidA

Pigeon
John Michael Kane said:
KidA,

Did they test your SBHG, LH and Estradiol levels as well? Also, have you ever had your thyroid function checked?

No SBGH/LH/Estradiol- ordered this one myself just to see if it was worth looking in to. Clearly it is.

Been on thyroid meds for almost a year now for hypothyroidism. Blood levels normalized, though I don't feel much different.

Think I'll go ahead and get the full male hormone panel.
 
I strongly recommend getting the full hormone panel done. Also, check for Vitamin D3 levels, and search out the thread on "Zinc Made Me a Better Man" here on the RVF boards. Also, check out stopthethyroidmadness. Google it, great site.
 

Gunner

Kingfisher
Hi,
I am on the same boat. I got some blood tests over the weekend, piss and blood.
I ordered total and free testoststerone, unfortunately no full hormones as I did not know. Got the following results:

Total: 667 ng/dl
Free: 7.1 pg/ml

I am a healthy: workout 4x week, lift heavy, take multivitamin and ZMA before sleep, eat mostly protein and good fats, 28 year old individual. Work in finance and have regular sex. I feel good overall but I think my test is pretty low -- I am more worried about the free one. I thought I had excess test because I am usually horny, I am getting bald, get the ocassional pimple but it seems that I was wrong.

What next steps should I follow? I really want to tackle this issue and be in the best possible shape I could be, both internal and external.
 
Gunner, I recommend you get your thyroid checked, which is something a lot of people suffer from malfunctions from. Also, next time you do labs, run the full panels with more than just T levels being checked. Last but not least, balding could be caused by a number of factors, including stress. DHT is the hormone that controls for balding, the more of it you have, the more likely you are to have accelerated hair loss. Usually, this is only the case if you already had a genetic predisposition towards losing hair in the first place.
 

Gunner

Kingfisher
John Michael Kane said:
Gunner, I recommend you get your thyroid checked, which is something a lot of people suffer from malfunctions from. Also, next time you do labs, run the full panels with more than just T levels being checked. Last but not least, balding could be caused by a number of factors, including stress. DHT is the hormone that controls for balding, the more of it you have, the more likely you are to have accelerated hair loss. Usually, this is only the case if you already had a genetic predisposition towards losing hair in the first place.

Hi John, I plan to go this saturday to take every test that you suggest. So far I have on my plans:

Free test
Total test
Thyroid

What else do you suggest?

I really want to tackle this issue and be in the best possible shape, inside and outside, possible.
 

RedPillUK

Pelican
Khan said:
If possible, find a male physician. If you do have symptoms similar to what Engineer described, a male doctor is much more likely to understand your situation. I think a female doctor would just go by the book and tell you "everything is fine, don't worry".

However, I now see that you took the test in the late afternoon. Big mistake! Men's bodies produce testosterone during the night; it's an evolutionary adaptation to make us prepared for the challenges of the day ahead (on a side note, that explains the 'morning wood' phenomenon - your body is filled with T when you wake up). During the day your T levels will slowly decline, so taking the test in the evening is the worst possible time to do this. The best time to take a T measurement is early in the morning.

My suggestion would be to repeat the test. Get a good night sleep (this is also very important; poor quality of sleep disrupts the production of T) and head to the lab as soon as you wake up. That should give you a more accurate estimate of your T levels.

It's also important to stress that testosterone levels fluctuate on a daily basis as well. So a single test, even if done properly, will not provide you with accurate data. Ideally, you should be taking measurements on a monthly or three-monthly basis. Doing a series of tests over the course of one week would also be a good option, as it would give you an insight into your daily fluctuations and average levels. I personally measure my T levels every six months.
:laugh:

I can't take the rest of your post very seriously with bro science like this in there. Testosterone is in your BLOOD not your dick! Just because it is produced overnight doesn't mean that's why you get morning wood. Actually the reason is because your body does this to prevent you having to go to the toilet until you wake up.
 

Kid Twist

Hummingbird
UK

That's not true.

The REM erection is based on T levels, in fact, it's the only time where the dopamine axis isn't involved (central) in the erection process.
 

Khan

Kingfisher
Gold Member
RedPillUK said:
Khan said:
If possible, find a male physician. If you do have symptoms similar to what Engineer described, a male doctor is much more likely to understand your situation. I think a female doctor would just go by the book and tell you "everything is fine, don't worry".

However, I now see that you took the test in the late afternoon. Big mistake! Men's bodies produce testosterone during the night; it's an evolutionary adaptation to make us prepared for the challenges of the day ahead (on a side note, that explains the 'morning wood' phenomenon - your body is filled with T when you wake up). During the day your T levels will slowly decline, so taking the test in the evening is the worst possible time to do this. The best time to take a T measurement is early in the morning.

My suggestion would be to repeat the test. Get a good night sleep (this is also very important; poor quality of sleep disrupts the production of T) and head to the lab as soon as you wake up. That should give you a more accurate estimate of your T levels.

It's also important to stress that testosterone levels fluctuate on a daily basis as well. So a single test, even if done properly, will not provide you with accurate data. Ideally, you should be taking measurements on a monthly or three-monthly basis. Doing a series of tests over the course of one week would also be a good option, as it would give you an insight into your daily fluctuations and average levels. I personally measure my T levels every six months.
:laugh:

I can't take the rest of your post very seriously with bro science like this in there. Testosterone is in your BLOOD not your dick! Just because it is produced overnight doesn't mean that's why you get morning wood. Actually the reason is because your body does this to prevent you having to go to the toilet until you wake up.

Science claims otherwise:

http://yourbrainonporn.com/testoste...al-erections-waking-erections-depend-dopamine

- testosterone and other androgens regulate the process which triggers morning wood;
- testosterone-deficient men have less frequent erections during sleep.

What you're suggesting would mean that every man who doesn't have regular morning wood would be forced to wake up sometime during sleep and go to the toilet. Having on average more trouble with bladder-control than men, women would be bed-wetting on a regular basis then.
 
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