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Testosterone normal but still weak
Apr 25, 2003

I have a testosterone level of 571 but i feel i lost much muscle mass and im very tired all the time and my sex drive is in the dog house, so to speak. is it possible that i used to have a much higher testosterone level and for me 571 is very low, and even though its in normal range for some people, for me it's below adequate levels for healthy, strong functioning?

Response from Mr. Vergel

Many people still experience fatigue, loss of lean mass and low sex drive even with normal total testosterone levels. There may be other causes to these problems like HIV itself, aging, medications you are taking, etc So it is very difficult to diagnose. I would talk to your doctor to have him/her check your thyroid and DHEA blood levels. I would also get your free testosterone (unbound) levels checked since some people may have normal levels of total and low levels of free testosterone (some studies better correlate free testosterone levels to quality of life than total levels). Dr Rabkin in NYC has found that some HIV + men may need higher levels of testosterone to achieve improvements in their quality of life (she recommends for your total testosterone to be above 500 ng/ml, which you seem to have.) I would also review all medications that you are taking with your doctor to ensure that some of them may not be decreasing your stamina and sex drive (antihistaminies,blood pressure medications, some anti-depressants and several other medications can have a negative effect on energy levels and sexual function)

I sometimes have a lot of fatigue and find ways to try to get out of that mode when everything else fails. I believe in good B vitamin supplementation (100 mg each a day of Thiamine, Riboflavin, B-6), B-12 shots ( 1 cc a week), Co-enzyme Q-10 (300 mg/day), zinc (50 mg/day with 3 mg/day copper)and low dose DHEA (25 mg/day) for improved energy levels. Sometimes just showing up to the gym is good enough and trying to work out lightly for 30 min 2-3 times a week to get your energy (and mood) to improve. And finally, getting out of the house and interacting with good people has helped me a lot.

Anyway, it is a complex issue that can have many causes. I hope this helped some. Let me know how it goes with you!



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