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Forums / Treatments, health professionals and therapies / Depression and low testosterone

Topic: Depression and low testosterone

8 posts, 0 answered
  1. Torb
    Torb avatar
    2 posts
    16 October 2013

    Hi everybody,

    Just joined after reading other peoples posts and seeing all the support and suggestions people are happy to give in this forum.

    My story is that I have been treated by doctors and psychiatrists for a number of years now and things go up and down. To complicate things I also have low testosterone levels which gives me the same symptoms as depression being low energy and general lack of interest in life and wanting to be left alone.

    What has complicated things over the last two years is moving from Adelaide to Brisbane and losing contact with my GP. Coming up here I had to start again and it turned out to be allot harder to get the medication and testosterone injections approved. Anyway, after about a year of going from specialist to specialist I'm now back on the testosterone replacement program again so hopefully soon my levels will go up to more normal levels again but it takes time. My psychiatrist first gave me one type of medication for depression but that didn't work so now I'm onto a different type but things are not going well even after almost a year. It is very up and down. Don't know what to do. Try a third medication? Try a psychologist?

    I'm still confused about whether it is the low testosterone or depression that is causing me to feel like this. Anybody out there with a similar story that could provide some feedback?

    MAKTAB avatar
    5 posts
    16 October 2013 in reply to Torb

    Torb... Not sure if I'll help but I know what you are saying... I haven't had my Testosterone levels checked (not a bad idea)... I can say that I totally understand how hard it is to change Drs and specialists... I am fighting to stay in my current location to maintain consistency.. Lucky my work has the capacity to do this...

    Sorry to hear the meds are doing their job, I am still waiting for my first time on meds to kick in,,,, 

    Stay strong. thoughts with you !!

    1 person found this helpful
  3. geoff
    Life Member
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    geoff avatar
    12164 posts
    17 October 2013 in reply to Torb

    dear Torb, I presume that you are a female, so I'll let the other females handle that part.

    It can take a few antidepressants before you find one the that eventually works for you, as I had to try half a dozen before the one that I take now has finally worked, but it wasn't straight away as it took a year or so before it kicked in.

    You will have to check the dosage you are taking and whether or not it's not strong enough, so go back to your doctor, probably not the psychiatrist if you plan on seeing a psychologist.

    Unfortunately it's a trial and error case with this medication, where some people are lucky first off, compared to others that have keep trying. Geoff.

  4. oneblackdog
    oneblackdog avatar
    10 posts
    18 October 2013 in reply to Torb

    Hi Torb

    I too have been found to have (very) low testosterone, but my gp says the normal range is huge and for younger men than I, so I'm not really low (for my age)..... My wife sent me to another dr (an environmental specialist - not a real specialist, just a gp with extra training that some would consider a bit "out there") who wanted the test and was keen to provide the supplement (cream) - I was also "diagnosed" with "pyroluria" and told to take lots of (expensive) nutrients.... but I digress.

    The testosterone has literally been a life saver. So much so that after 18 years of AD's I've been able to come off them - with the support of a new (number 3) psychiatrist - and start to look at the real problems that got me down to start with. 

    "try a third medication?" what do you want the AD to do? discuss this with your dr's as the drugs can only do so much - there are no miracle (drug) cures. 

    " try a psychologist?" or a psychiatrist who will do "talk/mindfulness" and is realistic about what AD's can actually do.

    Don't be afraid of finding things out for yourself and questioning what the doctors tell you - you have no doubt found this out in trying to get testosterone supplementation (my gp is glad that it is working but won't give me a script for it and psychiatrist #2 didn't want to know about it and #3 had never thought of it but is open to the idea). 

    My biggest mistake was sticking with psychiatrist #2 for so long - the protocol was; ask a few questions, give drugs, give more drugs, question thought patterns, give different drugs, give more drugs, chat about stuff (I don't think he got out much), mention CBT, challenge thought patterns, give more drugs, say "just hang in there"....  Drugs were easy, but they weren't a complete solution - the solution is much harder and I need some-one to push me. Dam!!!!

    My advice.... be patient, try one thing at a time and allow yourself to feel bad (but only for a while) - I wish I could take my own advice.


  5. Torb
    Torb avatar
    2 posts
    20 October 2013 in reply to oneblackdog

    Hi oneblackdog!! (strange name),

    My testosterone level was way outside that range you are talking about but what was weird was that they had to take two blood tests to confirm that I was really outside the range with three months between the tests so it dragged on for a bit. All up it took a year to get back on the testosterone replacement program after moving to Qld from SA. I had to go from the GP to the psychiatrist (who didn't know anything about testosterone replacement) to an endocrinologist (think I spelled that right!) to get the prescribed script. Now my GP can write me new ones.

    Don't know what AD mean? Are you saying that after 18 years of taking testosterone you have now come off them? How do you feel?

    By the way, I'm 46 years old.

    What I'm trying to figure out is whether I need both the testosterone and the depression tablets. At the moment I'm taking both and I don't feel well at all. I don't think my testosterone levels have come up to within the range again, will do another blood test and see how things are going. Will also discuss changing depression tablets with psychiatrist.

    Thanks everybody for your feedback.

    Oh, by the way I'm male Geoff. Torb is short for Torbjorn, not a common name here.

    1 person found this helpful
  6. oneblackdog
    oneblackdog avatar
    10 posts
    25 October 2013 in reply to Torb

    Hi Torb, sorry for the confusion - it was 18 years of taking AntiDepresants, and I've been taking the testosterone for nearly 6 months. I've been off the antidepressants for about 6 weeks - it's been a wild ride, but getting better - 'though slowly, and it may take many, many months. I started to feel/act a lot better after a few weeks of testosterone so then started to think about coming off the antidepressants. My new psychiatrist (#3) wants to see what I'm like without the drugs (lots of side effects from taking them and then lots more when withdrawing) and then deal with "what's left", being the issues that got me depressed in the first place.

    Do you need both? the only real way to tell is to experiment with one treatment at a time, and if you do that, do it slowly.


    1 person found this helpful
  7. HomeDog
    HomeDog avatar
    3 posts
    26 February 2016 in reply to Torb
    Very interested to hear any update with how you're coping with depression and your testosterone levels?
  8. Peterredd
    Peterredd avatar
    1 posts
    29 November 2016 in reply to Torb
    I was fould to have no testosterone at all but i have been told its up to me. May sound strange but i have been to two highly recomended doctors. NOT GPs.. So i wont take it anymore i have had about 5 needles.. The specialists have said testosterone can be more harmful. I suffer enough with depression and other things to worry about this. So as I say I was told yesterday not to take it anymore... Anyone else been told this... Cheers

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