While Hypogonadism (Low T) is most prevalent in older men above the age of 45, there are many cases where younger men from the early to mid-20s and up come to us with symptomatic low T. Early onsite Low T is common and treatable.
But what about fertility?
HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) is a naturally occurring hormone. When T levels are low in a normal healthy man a “releasing” hormone signal fires that tells the pituitary gland to release another releasing hormone (GnRH) known as Luteinizing Hormone (LH).
In layman’s terms, HCG stimulates the pituitary gland to tell the testes to produce testosterone.
Side note, HCG is also produced by women to help with the development of eggs.
Traditionally, men who would like to preserve fertility typically use our HCG protocol rather than our testosterone replacement protocol.
Why can’t I start Testosterone Replacement then Stop?
You can, if you are younger and still want to have children, there are two potential side effects of Testosterone Replacement Therapy that can occur:
The first is Loss of fertility – in clinically low testosterone men, we are literally replacing something that is not there. For example, your labs come back with a Total T level of 200, we set a protocol to get you around 650-800.
TRT may decrease your brain’s natural stimulation of the testes calling them to produce more sperm. As your sperm count reduces, your testes to shrink, which is known as Testicular Atrophy.
In clinical terms, we are treating Primary and Secondary Hypogonadism.
TRT treats Primary Low T where the diagnosis is damage or dysfunction of the testes.
HCG treats secondary Low T where the pituitary gland is telling your testes to produce more testosterone.
Our goal for HCG in men is to stimulate the pituitary gland to “kickstart” the natural production of testosterone. A 2015 study of 49 men showed that a standard protocol of HCG subcutaneously every other day is effective in supporting the recovery of sperm production (spermatogenesis) without concerning adverse effects.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy and Fertility in Men under 45 years of age. By the numbers.
If you are younger and HCG does not relieve your symptoms and you decide to start testosterone replacement therapy, you may still be able to restore fertility by stopping treatment.
According to research, most men should return to baseline sperm production in 6 to 9 months depending on age. A 2006 study executed by UCLA and LA Biomedical Research institute showed that 90% of patients were expected to return to baseline sperm concentration values 12 months after cessation of treatment and 100% after 24 months.
TRT trends over the course of a decade shared that 20% of men ages 18-45 who were on TRT did not get a baseline testosterone level prior to starting TRT… Some didn’t even know that TRT impacted fertility. This is problematic. We require blood work to start and continue TRT treatment regardless of age, but if you are in the reproductive age range and you are symptomatic, we have treatment options available. Study
If you wish to maintain fertility but have concerns about Low T symptoms, we suggest starting with a blood test. If you are in the reproductive age range, both TRT and HCG protocols are good options based on your goals. We will work with you to define your family and individual plans. Study, Study, Study.
HCG for Weight Loss
You might have heard that HCG is a great supplement to help shed weight. HCG has been shown to help lower cholesterol while simultaneously changing your weight distribution.
The use of HCG for weight loss and addressing problem areas was pioneered by A.T.W. Simeons, M.D., in his book, Pounds and Inches. He found that the nature of obesity fat is much more complicated and hormonal related. Based on his clinical observations, he inspired a shift in the way we understand the causes of obesity and weight gain.
Here is the basis for what we know as the HCG diet today:
“I found that as long as such patients were given small daily doses of HCG they could comfortably go about their usual occupations on a diet of only 500 Calories daily and lose an average of about one pound per day. It was also perfectly evident that only abnormal fat was being consumed, as there were no signs of any depletion of normal fat. Their skin remained fresh and turgid, and gradually their figures became entirely normal, nor did the daily administration of HCG appear to have any side-effects other than beneficial.”
- HCG does not have to be paired with an extremely low-calorie diet. A normal diet of 1500-2200 calories will work just as well with HCG to reduce fats and help your body retain muscle and recover.
- HCG helps the body pinpoint the deep underlaying layers of fat that can pile up in your gut and love handles using the abnormal fats for energy.
- HCG may also benefit muscle mass development, working against the muscle loss that comes as a consequence of sticking to a low-calorie diet. While you are dropping weight, HCG may help you retain muscle.
1. It feels like you’ve tried almost all the trendy diets but nothing seems to last.
With the millions of diets and opinions out, it’s tough to know who is right… you feel like nothing is sustainable and will work for the long-term…
2. You’re working long hours and just have no time to spend hours shopping and working out.
You’ve been trying to lose weight for SO long but work/life balance does not allow time…
3. Your interest levels drop after 2 weeks into a basic diet…
You start off strong, put together a grocery store, and head to the gym. After 2 weeks, you sleep in and skip the gym, then head to McDonald’s then order pizza for dinner… You’re toast and can’t get back on track.
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Medically peer reviewed by Dr. Allison Valentine, MD. Written by Our Editorial Team.
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If you do have low testosterone it can be easily treated and monitored via telehealth with the same level of care as you would receive in our traditional clinic setting in Roanoke, Texas. Give us a call if you have any questions!
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