Lab Results - Interpretation Help

Hi All,

I just received my lab results and I’m hoping to get some help interpreting them:

From what I can tell everything is in the “reference range”. I notice that “Testosterone Total” is in the lower part of the range.

My major symptoms are testicular atrohpy, and loss of penile sensitivity. There is some loss of libido and difficulty attaining and maintaining an erection, but I attribute this primarily to the reduced sensation.


Yeah, your testosterone is very low. You are definitely hypogonadal and might benefit from trt in your case. Speak to the doctors.

I’m no expert at lab tests but your prolactin is obviously high which is common among some PFS sufferers. There are meds and supplements to lower it like cabergoline. Ask your doctor. But PFS is so complex, just lowering prolactin may not fix the problem. Your testosterone also appears low BUT you also are just coming off of minoxidil so you may need to give your body time to find homeostasis before trying treatments. Your testosterone could recover on its own once off minoxidil for awhile. Just my opinion from reading forums.

I’m still doing minox, haven’t changed that because I didn’t want to screw with the test. I just lowered slightly and will be tapering slowly over the next few months.

Any idea why my T is so low? Like… what did the fin. Do to my body to cause this?

Is it possible it was something other than the fin or some interaction?

Sorry but you guys honestly know more than my doc. She’s never heard of PFS and seems to be discounting it.

So, my doc really doesn’t know how to interpret these results, so I’ll need to bridge knowledge between the forum and her.

Just wondering, but given your experience on the forums, pfs, and my labs / post history, how would you proceed if you were me?

From my research, I’ve been seriously considering starting HCG. That’s what I’ll be discussing with my endo.

Looks like Hypogonadism, 288 is not normal for any age, look for TRT if u already have kids or maybe hCG … where is the free Testosterone test?

Both Free T4 and Free Testosterone are in the chart above.

Ok, but my testicles have atrophied, how could this have been fin. when all major studies seem to say it’s impossible? Yet… these symptoms all started just days after quitting fin.

Do you also have low T? If so, have you tried any interventions?

Once you’ve been off minoxidil for a few months, if you haven’t recovered, you might try HCG to boost your testosterone. HCG is less likely to make you infertile with short-term use. Taking testosterone will make you infertile much quicker. They have hormone replace therapy (HRT) clinics for HCG amd testosterone therapy.

Cabergoline might be something to try first as it is less extreme imo and could boost testosterone while decreasing prolactin (which fits with your lab results). Some articles say it improves sexual function as well. You can google it. Also ask the dr. Doctors should be familiar with cabergoline.

Unfortunately, normalizing blood hormone levels doesn’t always work to alleviate symptoms and taking testosterone boosting meds can make PFS better but sometimes worse depending on the person. There are also a ton of blood/urine tests in addition to the ones you’ve had (e.g. progesterone, estrogen, cortisol) that could be recommended depending on what you or your insurance can afford. Many people have tried various treatments with no reliable results. So I’d hold off on treatments as long as possible.


This is next-level stuff.

Why would HCG make me infertile? I thought it would just act as LH analog to stimulate my testes?

Basically if it’s primary hypogonadism, then I need to fix my testes… not stimulate them. But if it’s secondary, I need to fix my brain lol (hypothalamus or the pituitary gland) and stimulate the testes via something like HCG.

My goal is to recover fully functional testicles…

Should I be thinking about freezing my sperm?

Thanks so much for the tip on “Cabergoline” I’ll certainly look into that.

Sorry about that, your comment on infertility was pretty triggering and I missed the other points.

At this point, it’s pretty obvious I meed to cut ALL 5ar products.

Here’s a case study showing the same pattern:

So… I suppose I’ll taper… though I want to get off asap.

In the meantime, I’ll look up natural ways to boost T and present all of this info to my endo.

The thing is… PFS seems so intangible, but there is a mechanism at play that we should be able to reason about.

Maybe hormone normalization is enough for some, and for others, I’ve seen them pop down another layer and tackle receptor sensitivity and reason with other, less common models.

So… kow, but I’m hoping we all keep moving in the right direction.

Sounds like you have a good bit of info and have been doing some good research. Sorry to disturb you about infertility. HCG is safe short term in small repeated doses from what I’ve read.

Tapering isn’t recommended by some on the forum. I haven’t researched it myself honestly. Let us know how you’re doing after you stop the minoxidil/shampoos/etc. Sorry you have to go through this. Right there with you though.

Prolactin could be causing gyno, sexual issues in your case. Low fsh, low test, both related. Would agree to discuss trt. But would be interested to see what your dht levels are as well.

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Yeah from the little research I’ve done it seems to suggest I have some form of “functional”, “secondary” hypogonadism.

I did develop gyno immediatly after taking fin, but I either got used to it or it went away.

I’ve decided to stop all 5AR (minox + shampoo / conditioner + almond oil) in hopes that it’ll help stabilize the testicular atrophy… now my primary concern is staying fertile so I can have freaking kids…

Can’t believe that I research fin extensively, phased in very slowly over 6 months, and still got hit with all of this.

Can’t believe I’m even talking about fertility. It’s unreal to think taking fin. could ruin my future family plans.

This is all a lot to handle, but here’s my plan:

Get the followup tests:

Sperm Count

Plus, I’ll get my T re-tested first-thing in the morning.

Insurance seemed to cover all my tests the first time around.

Then, the idea is, if sperm count is low, I need to potentially freeze my sperm because the atrophy may eventually cause full dysfunction sigh

I’ll stop all my 5ARs and eat well, exercise, and do some light supplementation: Multi-vitamin, Omega 3, and possibly Ashwaganda and L-Arginine

I’ll clear all this with my endo too.

Then, after 1 month, I can get my levels re-tested, and if T is improving, then I’ll continue.

If not, then I’ll consider treatments.

A lot of people say to wait it out… but my testicles have already lost a significant volume. My T is super low… what happens if I wait another 6 months and they’re dysfunctional?

I think I might need to do something now. At least I can try to get my sperm frozen so I have a backup plan…


I’m not of the wait it out camp either. Anyone I’ve read who waited it out got significantly worse over time, resulting in new symtoms by the months.

I have currently waited it out regarding the pharmacological department two months now, and the sides keep adding to the sum total.

Some things got better, and I’m thankful for that, but other things stayed as worse as they were they day I decided hair is more important then being healthy.

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Honestly, I wish I started acting immediately, not listening to bullshit “It’ll go away” from my doctor. Maybe it wasn’t too late back then. At least I had temporary recovery in about 6 months. Now another 6 months later, my condition deteriorated back to the “while on drug” one and I suspect I might have some tissue damage already. So please, don’t wait to fully evaluate your condition and act upon that.

@nw0ordeath @weaksides @Ultra @Wegotyou @anon74895881

Hey guys, I just had my appointment with my endocronologist, and she assured me that 288 ng/dL is totally normal, and that I’m just being anxious.

I told her my testicles have gotten smaller and I have very little penile sensitivity, and she said it might be anxiety related.

Her suggested treatment was that I stop all treatments, and go back to natural diet for 6 weeks to have a re-test. Luckily we at least agree on the next-step in the treatment.

It’s a bit frustrating, because while I do have anxiety issues, I’ve been managing them for years, and these symptoms were highly correlated with my cessation of Fin. Plus… the urologist said the same thing.

I don’t know.

Dealing with this sucks, and talking with doctors makes me feel like a child. They can act so arrogant when, in reality, they’re just people who went to school for a while and learned a bunch of shit…

Point is, I don’t know what to think anymore, but I know I have a problem, and I know it’s not anxiety. She at least agreed to have my sperm-count tested just in case.

288 testosterone is normal… for an 80 year old man yeah. You have to understand that these reference ranges also apply for the elders, so do you really wanna be at this level? Im shocked they said it’s totally normal when it is clearly not. 280 is very low, and i think the american endocrine association or something like that classifies 350> as hypogonadism. As I said earlier, there is potential for you to benefit from trt. It may not happen but it’s worth a try in my opinion. I would go to a trt clinic and get an opinion there if normal docs don’t want to prescribe you anything.

Man don’t get me started.

Its exactly how docs in my country operate.

When there is something that could explain the symptoms, they assume it’s specificially that. Unless further evidence prove the contrary, only, the’re the once deciding wether or not provided evidence is enough. Which it clearly isn’t.

You have to counter that way of thinking and or their arguments, actively or post appointment, to make clear that that would be an assumption. And more evidence is neede because of X and Y. Then you’d still have to consider not being too much of a smartass along the way.

It’s the reason I’m often critical of their decisions.

It’s pretty logical why this happens. Their jobs reward system isn’t built on solving issues necessarily, but just having appointments and making hours, and the extent of feeling good and feeling effective is part of that, but that’s how far it goes (in statefunded hospitals).

You’re dependent on their personal beliefs and ethics.

All that said 288 is in the ref range. extremely low though

If nothing helps after 6 weeks and you’d still get the same results I would ask for further research (multiple blood tests on the same day to disprove the low T is because of lower end fluctuation), or a second opinion with another endo.

If you don’t want to wait you could take matters into your own hands. Which is riskier, and more costly.


@nw0ordeath @weaksides

Thanks for the support guys, it’s definitly challenging to navigate all of this.

Not only do we have to deal with PFS, but a system that patronizes or denies its existence.

Here’s a quote from a research paper I dug up:

“ Although the normal range for serum testosterone might vary between different laboratories, the normal range for early morning testosterone in male adults is approximately 300 ng/dL to 1000 ng/dL.7 An early morning total serum testosterone level of less than 300 ng/dL clearly indicates hypogonadism, and under most circumstances benefit will be derived from testosterone replacement therapy. A healthy male adult patient with a serum testosterone level greater than 400 ng/dL is unlikely to be testosterone deficient, and therefore clinical judgment should be exercised if he has symptoms suggestive of testosterone deficiency.”

So… not sure what to think.

But I KNOW my testicles are way smaller than they used to be, and I’d think that ALONE would be enough to convince my docs something is wrong… nope.

If anxiety caused testicular atrophy and loss of penile sensation, then the 20% of Americans with an anxiety disorder would have low T and small balls… which obviously isn’t the case.

So… I’m going off all my drugs, including multivitamin and Omega 3 (per docs recommendation) for the next 6 weeks.

Then, I’ll get retested :man_shrugging:

Personally, I think it’ll be the same result, my testicles will have shrunk by another 20%, and she’ll still say it’s normal range and anxiety.

At which point, I’ll need to find someone else to prescribe HCG or TRT.

Definitly leaning toward HCG though.

She kept insisting it was still within “normal” range based on THAT reference range… but who knows how the lab decided on that range. Almost wish I’d scored 8 points lower just so she’d see it as “abnormal” in reference to that possibly arbitrary range.

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