Testosterone is a steroid hormone (an androgen) made in the testicles and in the adrenal glands. Testosterone has a variety of functions in men and is produced in high amounts in both males and females during puberty. Total testosterone can be tested to check for several medical conditions in males. If you have low testosterone, you may be able to get treatment online.
About testosterone level testing
Who can get testing or treatment online?
You can get tested if you’re a male over the age of 18.
You can get treatment online if:
- You’re aged 18 to 65
- You have testosterone deficiency and you are currently being treated for it
- You don’t have current or past health conditions that make testosterone treatment unsafe
How to place an order
The process is quick and easy – just follow these simple steps:
- Fill out a short online assessment about your health and lifestyle
- Place an order for your preferred treatment option
- Your assessment will be checked to see if your order is right for you
- Your order will be then posted to your preferred address or you can collect it from a local post office instead
How the test works
The test used to measure testosterone levels is a blood test. It is a convenient way to test your total testosterone levels without having to see a doctor:
- Your kit will contain 3 lances and a collection tube
- You will provide a sample of blood from your finger
- The sample will be used to test your testosterone levels
Your results will be provided to you via your account. They should be ready within 2-3 days of the laboratory receiving your sample.
Levels of testosterone can vary a lot during the day and with meals. It is important that your blood sample is taken early in the morning (between 7am and 11am) and that you are fasting (this means that you should not eat or drink anything, except water, from 11pm the night before).
It is also important that you don’t take the sample if you are feeling unwell as this can also lower your testosterone level.
Side effects of testosterone replacement therapy
The side effects of testosterone replacement therapy can include:
- local skin irritation if testosterone gel is used
- too much water in your body (fluid retention)
- greasy (oily) skin
- growing breast tissue (which in men is called gynecomastia)
- peeing more
- higher risk of prostate abnormalities
- higher number of red blood cells
- higher risk of blood clots
Testosterone is a steroid hormone, also called an androgen, which is mainly produced by the testicles (testes) in men.
In men, testosterone controls:
- the growth of body hair
- penis growth during puberty
- sex drive and function
- deepening of the voice during puberty
- muscle development
Everybody has testosterone in their body. Women make testosterone in their ovaries, but their levels are around 1/10 of the male level.
The adrenal glands are also responsible for making testosterone in both men and women. This page will focus on testosterone in men.
The level of testosterone in the body is carefully controlled. There are two glands which help to control the amount of testosterone produced in the testicles – they’re the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland.
A good testosterone level in non-obese men aged 19-39 years is between 12 and 31 nmol/L (nanomoles per litre).
The level of testosterone in men gets lower with age, at a rate of 1% to 2% each year.
Testosterone levels in men vary are usually at their highest in the morning, and at their lowest in the late afternoon or evening.
If a male’s testosterone level drops and is low, then symptoms occur. The most common consequences of low testosterone are:
- sexual dysfunction (erectile dysfunction, loss of morning erections, low sex drive)
- reduced muscle mass and strength
- impaired cognitive function
- low mood
- reduced energy
Other risks associated with low testosterone levels even with no symptoms are:
- cardiovascular disease
If a male’s testosterone level is high, symptoms include:
- fluid retention
- reduced testicle size
- loss of body hair
- decreased sperm count
- swelling of the prostate gland
- enlargement of the breasts
Other risks associated with high testosterone levels even without symptoms are:
- testicular tumours
- too many red blood cells
- higher than normal risk of blood clots
We offer a home blood test to determine total testosterone levels:
- If you choose to take a testosterone test, we’ll send you a test kit for you to use at home. You’ll get the test within 1-2 days of you placing your order
- You’ll need to provide a small blood sample using a small prick in your finger. Then use the pre-paid envelope we provide in the kit to post the sample to our partner lab. Your results will be ready within 2 to 3 days of your sample reaching the lab, and we’ll let you know when you can see them in your account
You can also ask for a blood test from your doctor. In this case, it will be a full blood test, where a sample will be taken from a vein in your arm.
If your test shows that you have low testosterone, you will be recommended to repeat the test to confirm it before taking any other decision. If it is confirmed, you will need to have a complete check-up to assess the cause.
There are ways to boost your testosterone levels.
- High-intensity workouts seem to be the most beneficial
- Exercise can help maintain testosterone levels, and increase them in some cases if they are low
- Stress training in the evening may have a big effect
- Drinking less alcohol or avoiding other substances like cannabis can help reduce the risk of low testosterone levels
- Eating a balanced diet can promote healthy testosterone levels
- Maintain a health weight as being overweight is linked to low testosterone levels
- You may be prescribed testosterone supplements if your levels are low
- A doctor will assess whether supplements are the right treatment for you
- You can also get treatment for the consequences of low testosterone, e.g. medications like Viagra for erectile dysfunction
There are some other supplements which may help to boost your testosterone levels, including:
- vitamin D
If you have low testosterone levels you may be referred to a specialist called an endocrinologist. You may be offered testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) which can be in the form of:
If you’re currently taking TRT, you’re happy with it, and you meet our criteria for treatment, then you can reorder online with us.
We offer the following treatments:
- Tostran gel 2%
- Testogel sachets
Advantages of testosterone gel treatment:
- The main advantage of testosterone gels is that they provide a stable testosterone level for 24 hours with one application per day
- Testosterone gel is safe for most men, as long as it’s been prescribed by a doctor
- These gels can be a good option for improving quality of life for men who have a low testosterone level
How to apply testosterone gels:
- It is recommended that apply the gel about the same time each day (preferably in the morning), to clean, dry skin
- Depending on your treatment, the location where to apply the gel can vary (your doctor should give you instructions on this)
- Spread the gel gently until it is completely absorbed into your skin, then cover up where you applied the gel. Use loose clothing to avoid the gel spreading to other people
Thing to be aware of when using testosterone gels:
- Testosterone gel contain may give positive results in doping test (drug tests for work or sports)
- Androgens (like TRT) should not be used for increasing your muscle mass, unless this is recommended by a doctor. They should also not be used to increase fitness or levels of physical activity
- Testosterone treatments can lower the amount of sperm that your body produces. So, it is important that if you plan to have children in the future you discuss this with your doctor before using testosterone gel
If you’re receiving testosterone treatment and you want to test your levels – ask your doctor what the best time of the day is to do it, as it can vary depending on the testosterone treatment you are taking.
Dr Laura Joigneau Prieto
Dr Laura Joigneau Prieto joined Zava in April 2018 as a clinical doctor. She studied medicine at the Universidad Autónoma in Madrid, Spain, and at the Pierre and Marie Curie Faculty in Paris, France. She did a Master’s Degree in clinical medicine in 2009 at the Rey Juan Carlos University in Madrid.Meet our doctors
Last reviewed: 07 Jan 2019
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