I started out at (2) pumps per shoulder per day, and then the doctor increased it to (3) pumps per side partially at my request and because my testosterone level had only come up 10 points in the time I was on it. I had an unpleasant and immediate bad reaction to the gel therapy in that my blood pressure went dramatically and dangerously HIGH. My usual BP readings for the previous two years or were in the 110/70 approx range almost continuously day and night. I attributed that in great part to the celery, apple, cucumber, spinach, etc. GREEN SMOOTHIES.
I was in Ireland doing ministry work for about 5 weeks this spring and of course NO Vita Mixer available and limited veggies with NO green smoothies. Although I averaged 1 1/2 hours of walking daily while there, I did not have access to any of my daily green smoothies.
In any event my blood pressure jumped from 110/70 on average to 195/101 or close to it after going on the 3 pumps per side. This was totally an Unacceptable reaction and the high BP would outweigh whatever benefit the Androgel might have provided.
I decided to wean myself off the Androgel completely and did it in fairly short order. In a period of three weeks I went from 3 pumps per side back to 2 pumps per side and then down to 1 pump per side and went off it completely five days ago. My blood pressure is still HIGHER than it was but it has come steadily down and about 1/2 hour ago, it was 133/72. That is the lowest figure I have had since starting testosterone therapy. This is NOT to put the Kibosh on Androgel in general, except to keep good records of your BP and other possible side effects, and know it is NOT for everybody.
I fully expect my BP readings to be back down in the 120/75 or lower range within another week or ten days. The interesting thing is Androgel's literature indicates that only 1-3% of all Androgel users suffer a blood pressure increase with their product. It is logical that there are others besides me in that 1-3% group, however it was enough for me to convince me I didn't need it.
The side effects some have mentioned by coming off from it have apparently escaped me, PRAISE THE LORD.
Whether you are on Androgel or Testim because you had borderline or low levels of testosterone as a Type 2 Diabetic or were suffering from Erectile dysfunction or whatever, there are alternatives to testosterone external therapy and those alternatives do not have the terrible side effects.
The Dangers of Exogenous (external and synthetic)One of the most undesirable side effects of exogenous testosterone replacement therapy is the shrinkage of the male genitals, the penile and testes. The medical term for the condition is "testicular atrophy". With prolonged usage, your testicle will shrink to the size of a pea.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy
Testosterone Replacement Therapy
As a matter of fact, the renown Mayo Clinic lists the following side effects with exogenous (external and synthetic) testosterone replacement therapy:
- Cause skin reactions
- Cause fluid retention
- Cause baldness
- Cause or aggravate sleep apnea (brief, repeated cessation of breathing during sleep)
- Stimulate non cancerous (benign) growth of the prostate and cause or worsen urinary symptoms
- Stimulate growth of prostate cancer that's already present
- Enlarge breasts (Gynecomastia)
- Stimulate growth of breast cancer that's already present
- Cause testicle shrinkage (Testicular atrophy)
- Limit sperm production (Infertility)
- Stimulate excess blood production (Polycythemia)
I'm sure you agree with me. Its not pretty. However the number of prescriptions of testosterone replacement therapy has increased over the years. And the primary reason is I believe the lack of emphasis by doctors and pharmaceutical companies on the negative side effects of the treatment.
(MY INPUT): AN Alternative to Boosting low T Levels is Euryfoma Longolia (LongJack):
MY INPUT / (ANOTHER is eating Pecans every day, no more than 2 Brazil nuts along with taking 1.5 to 3mg of L-Arginine along with 1 or two pycogenol 100mg pycogenol caps every day. Tribulus Terrestris caps and Maca caps also may be warranted. Also make sure you are eating your cruciferous veggies like cauliflower and eating broccoli, green beans, spinach and drinking green smoothies)
Pycnogenol - Erectile Dysfunction and Heart
Pycnogenol is one of several supplements that has good evidence for its ability to improve erectile dysfunction. Pycnogenol, a patented water extract from the bark of specific type of pine tree in southwestern France, is a Nitric Oxide "booster". Of course, many foods are erection-promoting Nitric Oxide boosters. Pycnogenol, while not a food, is an example of another plant-based blood flow builder.
According to history, Pycnogenol got its start from a group of French sailors who were nursed back to health from pine bark prepared by the local natives (I believe along the St. Lawrence in Canada). Regardless of how true the story is, the natives were probably centuries ahead of their time as pine bark is loaded with antioxidants and other remarkable phytochemicals. Pycnogenol has had stellar research results, including its ability to pump up your erectile strength. (See also How To Improve Erectile Dysfunction Naturally through foods.)
The study that put pycnogenol on the map in the fight against erectile dysfunction was one where a cohort of men (with erectile dysfunction of course) were given a combination of 1.7 G L-Arginine per day along side 2X40 mg doses of Pycnogenol.  L-Arginine is also a Nitric Oxide booster and the study showed that the two in combination significantly improved the erectile dysfunction of most of the men involved in the study. Several follow up studies have shown that varying combinations of Pycnogenol (40-120 mg daily) and L-Arginine (1.7 - 3.0 grams daily) result in 70-90% of men having restored erections and with no side effects. 
(I am NOT playing doctor here and consulted with my own and kept her posted as to my symptoms and progress. I have an upcoming appointment on the 15th of June and just had my complete blood lipid profile completed along with testing my testosterone levels and ordering an iodine level test. I discovered the link between low levels of iodine and insulin resistance recently and did a post on that issue also.
I DO believe one has to do some homework and play an active role in your own health. You just can't eat everything and anything you want to because it tastes good and not do any meaningful exercise and hope the prescription drugs are going to make everything all right for you. IT AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN.)
King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.) / Psalm 139:14
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.