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Fatigue and AnemiaFatigue and Anemia
          
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Answer this question, damn it!!!
Aug 23, 2001

I've asked this question in 3 other forums and still haven't gotten a reply! Hello in there! I'm waiting! I'm tired, maybe even depressed, have low sex drive, and my muscles feel like mush. I want to take testosterone. What is the optimal range for peak health for HIV positive guys? My girlfriend has HIV too and symptoms similar to mine. Can she take some testosterone too? Will it turn her into a lumberjack? Now answer my questions, damn it!!!! Testoseroni!

Response from Dr. Frascino

OK OK Testosteroni! Calm down. You don't have to get so . . . "testy!"

Your symptoms are indeed suggestive of hypogonadism, but you'll need a blood test to confirm those suspicions and rule out other potential complicating or contributing factors. Maybe your fatigue and other symptoms are caused by anemia? Or depression? Your HIV specialist or primary care physician should be able to help you sort this out. Now what about your girlfriend that you want to turn into a lumberjack -- she has similar symptoms? Hypogonadism (low testosterone) is generally a problem for males, but some women with HIV can also have suboptimal levels of testosterone. Certainly excessive doses of androgenic steroids like testosterone can have masculinizing effects in women. Their "normal" levels are obviously much lower than ours as men. Even men, however, can develop problems if they over supplement with testosterone. Common symptoms in men that can occur if you push testosterone levels substantially above the normal range include inappropriate aggressiveness, hostility, acne, testicular atrophy, accelerated development of prostate tumors, liver damage, and thicker blood, which may lead to heart problems or stroke. Optimal ranges of testosterone vary with age as well as gender, but generally speaking, for men total testosterone ranges from 500-1000 and free testosterone, from 100-200. For women, total testosterone is usually 50-100 with free testosterone 1-2. Being Italian, I like to shoot for the upper half of the so-called normal range. Good luck, Testosteroni, to you and your girlfriend. What was her name? Pepperoni?

Dr. Bob


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