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Sorry if my post was a little emotional and/or graphic for some, I am on a almost unbearable emotional roller-coaster at the moment.
Well, here is my blood work. What makes my case probably slightly unique is that I was on TRT way before starting Propecia. I don’t have to many assays but enough to show one major change that happened to me pre/post Propecia: my SHBG went through the roof! relative to Total Testosterone it increased by a whopping factor 3.4 over baseline! Thanks to Hypo for pointing me in that direction.
Actually, SHBG is still well within range but not compared to my personal baseline. I guess if I hadn’t had my SHBG tested pre Propecia most doctors would look at my SHBG value and conclude that it is within the reference range. I also calculated the FAI (Free Androgen Index) - hopefully correctly - and found that to be well below reference after Propecia.
From what I understand about SHBG is that it binds with highest affinity to DHT, then Testosterone and last Estrogen. This leads me to the careful conclusion that even if my body is producing DHT again, it is probably being all mopped up by SHBG before it can do any good. I am wondering if maybe much of my Testosterone is getting bound to SHBG before it can be converted to DHT by 5AR? As you can see in my original post, I assumed most of all DHT had left my system. Hypo then pointed out to me that it could just as well be SHGB. I suppose that could explain many of my symptoms.
Anybody, feel free to comment on these conclusions.
I do have more detailed blood work, but only post-propecia. If anybody is interested in any further details let me know and I’ll post it (I have T3/4, Prolactin, DHEA and IGF-1).
Just to make one point absolutely clear: Even though my pre propecia figures are on the low side, my sexual function and everything else in my life was perfectly fine. Also, don’t get misled by low LH/FSH - in my condition and after years of TRT that is fairly normal - the HPTA axis gets pretty badly suppressed after a while on TRT. But as I said, low LH/FSH was never a problem for me since I was on TRT so whatever LH/FSH are now, that shouldn’t be a problem either.
I will be seeing my (new) endo this coming tuesday and new blood work is scheduled. He hasn’t seen my pre Propecia figures yet and I am very curious to hear what he has to say about my SHBG. I am pretty sure that my T and E will be roughly baseline. So the big question mark will surely be: How to bring down SHBG from the (relative) stratosphere back down to earth?