Questions You May Have About Hormone Replacement As Someone With Testicular Cancer

Posted on: 23 April 2020

Being diagnosed with testicular cancer is, of course, quite scary. At first, your questions may be along the lines of "what is the prognosis?" and "will I recover?" But after the treatment path becomes clear, your questions will likely change in character. Most people start to have questions about hormone replacement. Here are some of those questions, along with their answers.

1. Will you need hormone replacement if you only have one testicle removed?

This depends. Most men who only have one testicle removed do not have to undergo hormone replacement. The remaining testicle will "make up" for the missing testicle and produce more hormones. However, there are cases in which this does not occur. If your remaining testicle is undersized, you may need to take HRT even though you only had one testicle removed. Your doctor will monitor your testosterone levels post-surgery to determine whether HRT is necessary. Just know that in most cases, it is only needed if you have both testes removed.

2. What form will your testosterone supplements be in?

There are several types of testosterone supplements your doctor may recommend. In most cases, you can simply choose the one that is most convenient for you. Testosterone pills tend to be the least expensive. You typically need to take them twice per day. If you prefer not to have to swallow pills, you can use a testosterone gel, which you apply to your inner thighs and abdomen daily. Another option is a testosterone implant. This is about the size of a grain of rice. Your doctor inserts it under your skin, and it releases testosterone a little at a time for a few months. You'll just need to see your doctor for a new implant a few times per year.

3. Will the testosterone make you feel normal?

Once you are finished with surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and whatever other treatments your doctor may recommend for your testicular cancer, you should slowly start to feel normal. Testosterone replacement therapy should certainly help with this. If you have been suffering the effects of low testosterone due to cancer, those issues should subside once you begin HRT. For example, if you have been feeling weak and losing muscle, the HRT will help you build muscle like you did prior to the cancer diagnosis.

Testosterone replacement is necessary for men who lose both testicles to cancer, and also for some men who only lose one testicle. Reach out to your doctor and look into mens bioidentical hormone therapy if you have any additional questions.