I recently switched up my testosterone prescription. I am now using Androgel, after nearly 4 years of injections. I am really pleased with the change and thought I’d compare and contrast the two experiences.
I initially started with injections for two reasons. First, the cost–it’s generally much cheaper. (If you’re paying for testosterone cypionate out of pocket, you might want to look into Strohecker’s Pharmacy. Affordable and awesome.) Second, my doctor informed me that people usually see faster changes with injections, and fast changes were my no. 1 priority at the time.
I’m a rather anxious person, and over the last few years I developed a very negative relationship with my shots. In the beginning, I was highly motivated to get T into my system, so I didn’t really care. Once hormones changed from a matter of urgency to plain old health maintenance, I found it harder and harder to do the shots. I also found the shots got a lot more painful as I shed fat and gained muscle. Alma dutifully did every single one of my injections, despite my frequent complaining about them. (Thank you!!!) I kept thinking things would improve with time, but in fact, they got worse and worse. A couple months ago, I finally decided I’d had enough.
With some effort, I found an affordable way to get the gel. My insurance covers it at a great price if I get it through a special home delivery pharmacy, and it works out to be only slightly more expensive than the injections ($160/year vs $120/year). I’ll be aging off my dad’s insurance plan in a year; hopefully I will be able to continue to get the gel at a reasonable price after that. We’ll see.
Some things I love about switching to Androgel:
- No needles!
- No pain!
- I can do everything myself (never worked up the nerve to do my own injections)
- Levels feel more even (used to get breakouts & feel low-energy at the end of my shot cycle)
A few things I don’t like about Androgel:
- Volume of gel I have to apply. I am on a lower dose (3 pumps/day, similar to 75mg/week in injection terms) and it’s still so. much. gel.
- Worrying about accidentally exposing someone else to T (namely Alma)
- Skin is a bit dry and itchy where I apply the gel
The few downsides are minor inconveniences. I’ve switched my showers from morning to night, so that takes care of the accidental exposure issue. Lotion is helping with the skin irritation. I will get my levels checked in a few months to make sure the gel is doing its job. All in all I’m really pleased with the switch.
Readers who take hormones–what method do you use?