What Happens When You Stop Testosterone Replacement Therapy?
What happens if you change your mind about testosterone replacement therapy?
So what happens when you stop testosterone replacement therapy? People undergo TRT for many different reasons, and you may find after undergoing the treatment for a while, that you no longer wish to continue. While this is absolutely a conversation you should have with your doctor before stopping, you should be aware that once you start TRT, it should be understood as a lifetime commitment. If you choose to stop the treatment, for whatever reason, your body will revert to its previous state which may cause withdrawal. You may decide you’re more comfortable with this and prefer how you felt before the TRT. That is of course your right as a patient and something you should discuss with your doctor.
What is testosterone replacement therapy used for?
Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is another name for androgen replacement therapy (ART). Simply put, TRT aims to increase testosterone levels in your body and tends to be the favored treatment for the effects of hypogonadism, a condition in which the testes are not working, or not working as well as they should. TRT is also central to transgender hormone therapy in the cases of someone wanting to transition from female to male. TRT has also recently been used to combat the unwanted effects of male aging such as thinning hair, muscle weakness, and decreased sex drive. This controversial use of TRT is still subject to clinical trials and considered experimental.
How long do you need to take it to see results?
The length of time it will take for you to feel the effects varies greatly from person to person. Some patients have claimed to feel stronger, more virile, and more energetic only days after starting TRT. In most cases however, it takes between two and four weeks for the body to become suitably accustomed to the introduced testosterone and produce the positive results the patient is seeking. An important component of TRT is regular consults with your treating doctor, so if you have concerns about the length of time it’s taking to feel results, you should absolutely raise this with them.
What should you do about troubling side effects?
TRT does come with several possible side effects, and it’s important that you undergo the relevant testing with your doctor prior to starting treatment. Those with cancer, heart disease, or sleep apnea are at much higher risk of dangerous side effects and should tread cautiously. While the potential side effects of TRT pose significant risks to your health, others are milder and more manageable. However, that’s not to say that you should ignore side effects if they are bothering you. If you have any concerns about possible side effects, this is something you should discuss with your doctor. They may be able to assist with solutions or management of these, without needing to stop your TRT.
Is it safe to just stop taking testosterone replacement therapy?
Abruptly ceasing any medical treatment without the advice of your doctor is not recommended. In the case of TRT, you also need to bear in mind the role hormones play in almost every function of your body. While it’s unlikely that going “cold turkey” on TRT will place you at imminent risk of death, it will make you feel extremely uncomfortable. Suddenly depriving your body of testosterone will result in a massive shock to your system. This is something you will need to be prepared for if you wish to end the treatment, however as always, you should consult your doctor before making any drastic changes.
What can I expect if I just stop taking testosterone replacement therapy?
Stopping TRT will, in most cases, see your body revert to its previous state prior to commencing the treatment. Most patients report feeling more tired, weaker, losing muscle mass, increased fat, thinning hair, and lower sex drive. In contrast to the beneficial results of TRT taking some time to be felt after starting the treatment, the feelings and symptoms associated with ceasing it tend to come on much faster. For some patients, however, this reversion to the body’s pre-treatment state may be preferable to side effects. It all comes down to personal choice and what you and your doctor ultimately decide is best for you.