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Can testosterone make you sick? Can testosterone make you sick?

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Unread 12-09-2002, 12:45 PM
Can testosterone make you sick?

After much consideration, I got some testosterone gel (1%) to try for lack of desire. The directions say to 1/8 teaspoon 3 days a week. Almost as soon as I tried it, I came down with flu-like symptoms (nausea, dizziness). I took it for 6 days before stopping to see if I would feel better. I did after some time. I should say, though, that I have low immunity right now and go through periods of this on and off anyway... but this time seemed different, worse, than usual.

So.. I was just wondering if anyone else has had anything like this with testosterone?

Also: the pharmacist said that this was "natural" testosterone, but I wonder if I can trust that. Is "natural" the same as "bioidentical"? All it says on the tube is "testosterone 1% topical gel".

Any feedback appreciated!

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Unread 12-09-2002, 01:48 PM
Can testosterone make you sick?

Hi Lily did you get the testosterone from a compounding pharmacist? If you did, and it says natural testosterone, then yes, it's bio-identical. Mine says "natural" on it too.

I didn't have the nausea problem. I'll be interested to hear if anyone else has had that happen.
Unread 12-09-2002, 05:15 PM

Hi! I have just walked into my house from a one hour drive to pick up my brand new jar of testosterone cream.... My libido just wasn't anymore... After reading very carefully the suggestions from Surferbabe and Cynthia, I set out to beg my newly acquired endocrinologist (hormone wizard) to prescribe testosterone cream for me. After all, it has helped many (keep reading the threads) and it should help me (Oh, God, I Hope). I have no MOJO-no feeling of well being, no desire, no energy.
I have heard nothing but good things about testosterone when it is prescribed separately and bio-identical(endocrinologist tells me that there is no such plant that mimics the bio of testosterone like there are for estrogen and progesterone. So, where it comes from I don't know. I also mentioned that it should not be the chemical used to make testosterone in the ESTRATEST pill (begins with meth-----????--jungle gals report possible bad side effects).
So--I have a cream that I will begin tonight and had loads of hope for until I came home and read this.
The one thing, I did remember to ask my Endocrinologist (suggetion from Surferbabe) was to test my Free Testosterone levels. My tests came back this a.m. my testosterone was very, very LOW and my estrogen was 60.....
My Endocrin wants me to double up on the estrogen. I am now taking 0.625mg and will increase to l.50mg., double.
Somewhere in the back of my foggy mind is the fear that I have read that estrogen makes you gain tons of weight. I am already bloated and my apetite has gone way up.
Should I double the estrogen dose??
I am just starting the test.... how long does it take to notice if it is working for me. I really have so much hope that this is going to give me some energy back.
Can anyone give me some feedback on other side effects from test.? ......... and what about weight gain (blow up) from estrogen? and is l.50mg. a large dose of estrogen?
Also, another side effect from hormone imbalance is that my eyes are drying out. Now using natural tear drops.
Of course, I still think the worse symptom for me was the deep depression....I was not ready for that.
Nobody tells you about all this misery after the surgery. Everyone is around giving you confidence and strength before you get it done and afterwards ---- they wonder why your not being a "good girl" and feeling well. If I sound a bit jaded --- you are right.....I am so tired of being sick.
Love, Sugar
PS Lily, did you have your free testosterone tested?? Ask surferbabe .... I am still new here. I am 4 months post total hysterectomy/appendectomy gone into surgical menopause.
Good Luck, Lily. I hope you find the right thing for you.
Many smiles and hugs.
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Unread 12-09-2002, 05:29 PM
Can testosterone make you sick?

(((sugar))) thanks for the help, I'll try to answer some of your questions.

The "natural" testosterone you get from the compounding pharmacist really means bio-identical. It is the same molecule your ovaries made before your surgery. However, it is actually synthesized from plant sources (usually wild yam, just like progesterone) in a lab. The testosterone in Estratest is methyltestosterone (you have a good memory! ), and it's made by taking bio-identical testosterone and adding a methyl group to it. Why do they do that when the "real" stuff is best? Because they can patent the methylated version and they can't patent something that's already made naturally by your body. Talk about not having the patient's best interests at heart...

The dry eyes is often a sign of low estrogen (ask Audrey S or Cynthia, they both have had this problem) so increasing your estrogen may help with that. It can also help with the depression for some women. OTOH, it can cause bloating and weight gain (at least it does for me).

Here's a link to a list of symptoms of too much/too little estrogen:

too much/too little

and here is a list of symptoms of too much/too little testosterone:


oily skin
facial hair
deepening voice
feelings of anger and aggression
male pattern baldness
clitoral enlargement


vaginal dryness
urinary incontinence
dry skin
brittle hair
decreased sexual desire
reduced energy and sense of well-being
insensitivity to clitoral stimulation
insensitivity to nipple stimulation
decreased arousability overall
lower capacity for orgasm
thinning of pubic hair (for some women)

Whether 1.5mg estradiol is a lot or not depends on a few things like your age (young women need more), weight (heavier women need less) and how efficient your liver is if you're taking oral estrogen. To determine what's the right amount of estrogen, the best thing to do is listen to your body, check your symptoms and adjust by them.

I hope this helps. Good luck with your testosterone cream! Remember it can take a little while to work.
Unread 12-09-2002, 06:34 PM

Thanks, Surferbabe!
I wish I would've communicated with you before the surgery. I keep giving this website to any doctors that I speak with. Some of them are aware of it and others are surprised and want the info to see what's going on. -------
We need to find a OBGYN, female, who has had a total hyst/appen and gone into surgical menopause with severe hormone/swings/deep depression/dryness/bloating/sweats/flushes/dry eyes/total loss of libido. Hopefully, she will still be sane and be able to understand how to research better HRTs.
Dream on??
I'll post a thread if I notice anything + or - regarding the testosterone, as well as, the estrogen.
Meanwhile, I will continue reading your threads.
Please keep the info coming. It is muchly appreciated.
Thank You, Sugar
Unread 12-09-2002, 07:07 PM
Can testosterone make you sick?

Hi Linda and Sugar

Linda, thanks for the reply. I got it from a compounding pharmacist, so I guess that
means its "bioidentical".

Sugar, don't be discouraged by my experience! It could be that it's not even the
testosterone that made me sick. I'm going to wait a bit and then give it another
try; I'll let you know what happens. I can certainly sympathize with your frustrations.

Unread 12-09-2002, 10:19 PM

Hi Lilly: Thanks for the encouragement. It's unbelievable how some forms of hormones work so great for one woman and are almost toxic to another.
I hope you find the test. works for you on your second try.
Also, did you have a hormone blood level test??? Surferbabe and Cynthia had mentioned to be sure and have that done.
I think, if you have test. at a normal level in your could have negative results .....if you add more test. as hormone theraphy.
As I mentioned before, I am new at this and trying to find something that will work for me.
If I can get some info to help me or give some info to help anyone else that is great.
Get a good night's sleep.
Good Luck, Sugar
Unread 12-09-2002, 10:30 PM

Lily: Just a quick thought for you. I noticed that you cannot take estrogen, but are trying testosterone. Could or have you looked into the possiblities of progesterone. I know, my Endocrin said she wasn't a fan, because of my hysterectomy (she thinks I don't need it), but I use a tiny bit every day(cream) and have for about 6-7 weeks and I think, it helps a little. I don't know, if you can use it.
Just trial and error. I know how awful, it is to feel whipped for such a long period of time.
I am not a medical person, so this is just another suggestion.
***Good Night****
Unread 12-10-2002, 02:31 PM
Can testosterone make you sick?

Sugar, thanks for the suggestions! I probably SHOULD have my hormone levels
checked; Linda suggested that to me before too. But on the other hand, I figure,
I have no ovaries, I have all the symptoms of testosterone deficiency, it's no surprise
that I WOULD have testosterone deficiency, so it kind of seems unnecessary. Also,
it seems to me that everyone says there are no guidelines as to what is "normal".
As for the progesterone: I tried it before, and while I was on it started having a lot
of joint pain and swelling in my hands. I never determined for sure that it was the
progesterone, so maybe if one more trial of testosterone doesn't work, I'll try
maybe a lower dose or less frequent use. I was really disappointed
about the progesterone, because this book about it by Dr. John Lee kind of presents
it as a panacea. In spite of my problems with it, I think I DID have a bit more libido
then, so maybe I should try again....

I hope the testosterone works for you! Thank God someone started this site and
we can all share this information! Because it really is so different from one woman
to the next, and requires a lot of trial & error and doctors just don't have time
(generally) to help us with all this. I completely agree with you about the need for
more research by someone who understands what it's like.

Unread 12-10-2002, 04:35 PM
Testosterone levels

Hi, Lilly:
I agree that using symptoms to understand your hormone deficiencies make sense. I was doing that and wasn't getting much relief. My quality of life was nil.
I am realizing how horrible it is to go through this surgery and find out after that you have to search to find answers for yourself. Especially, when you don't feel well.
I was truly doing trial and error with the emphasis on error.
After reading at the JUNGLE, I also could identify with a low testosterone level, but could not get any cream without a script.
My gyno had not had a lot of success with compounded pharmacies serving their my gyno suggested the endocrinologist.
I just got my test results back yesterday and started the test. cream with an increase in estrog.
I have read from some women that their hormone levels came back within normal range and they were still feeling awful....
I am just trying to find something that helps me feel better.
Sometimes pooling our research cuts down on time and helps someone else.
I appreciate the response.
I am glad you will try the progest. cream again.
Let me know, if it works or if you find anything else that does work.
Love, Sugar
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