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Hormone Replacement Therapy Clinic Blog

Sticky: The difference between steroid abuse and hormone replacement therapy.

June 20, 2014

Adverse Effects of Anabolic Steroid Abuse vs. Benefits of Physician- Supervised Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)

Due to an increase in media coverage of sports and athletes regarding non-medical use of anabolic steroids, the difference between hormone replacement therapy and anabolic steroids has become confusing to the general public. Young athletes illegally take synthetic male anabolic steroids without a physician’s supervision because they wish to increase their physical stamina for enhanced athletic performance. This is done through tissue building effects and an increase in male physical characteristics, desired by both male and female athletes alike.  Synthetic anabolic steroids mimic the effects of the male sex hormone, testosterone, which can increase muscle mass and strength in short periods of time.

Steroids are no stranger to the fitness/bodybuilding world and competitive athletics, but today more and more “regular guys” are taking steroids in an effort to combat the effects of aging and reduce its impact. While legal steroids do have a place and serve useful, medically-valid purposes, they are frequently abused. Part of this stems from their widespread availability in gyms, health clubs, online from Internet pharmacies, friends and more.

Besides being illegal without a prescription, steroids – when taken without proper medical supervision – are known to cause a variety of health problems. The short-term adverse physical effects of anabolic steroid abuse are fairly well known, but the effects of their long-term use are not well-studied. Abuse or overuse of synthetic anabolic steroids may cause the male body to become “feminized,” causing irreversible physical and psychological damage – depending on the dosage, type of synthetic steroid being taken, and usage duration. Some examples are high blood pressure, serious changes in cholesterol levels, heart problems in the left ventricle, and liver damage if oral steroids are taken. In this sense, the difference between hormone replacement therapy and anabolic steroids has a lot to do with non-medical versus medical use, and the illegal use of a synthetic form of testosterone versus legal use of pure testosterone.

The real problems arise when steroid users become steroid abusers. They buy their steroids at the gym or from a friend, self-administering them and regulating their intake themselves, rather than under the guidance of a trained medical professional. This is a recipe for disaster. When someone buys steroids off the black market the potential for dangerous repercussions is astronomical.

First of all, when buying steroids off the black market, you never really know what you are going to get. The majority of steroids sold on the streets in the U.S. come from other countries where quality standards can be very lax at best. It’s also very common to take steroids prepared for animals rather than for humans because they are usually cheaper-but also potentially very dangerous. There is also a prevalence of fake or counterfeit steroids on the U.S. black market. These can not only be dangerous, but they can be deadly as well.  The only benefit of using an anabolic steroid is when it is prescribed medically for medical conditions, the same as hormone replacement therapy. In certain medical cases, it is the only answer for quality life. The main difference between hormone replacement therapy and anabolic steroids comes down to how each is used, specifically if it is used under proper medical supervision.

There’s no getting around the fact that our bodies age. For men, as we get closer to the middle age mark, natural testosterone production in the body begins to slow down by about one to two percent each year – though this can vary widely. Around age 50 or so, about one-half of men will experience what’s known as “andropause,” which is the result of declining levels of androgen in the body. The symptoms of andropause will vary from one man to another but may include a decrease in energy (lethargy), diminished libido or less interest in sex, erectile dysfunction (ED), muscle weakness, difficulty sleeping, hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings or depression and more. Because of the symptoms’ similarity to what women experience in menopause, andropause is sometimes referred to as the “male menopause,” although in men the reproductive system does not shut down entirely as it does in women – it just slows down.  To fight the symptoms of andropause many men turn to either steroids or hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is practiced under a physician’s care and is medically used for abnormal testosterone levels in menopausal individuals, chronic wasting diseases, and to treat a multitude of symptoms. Hormone replacement therapy also does not use a synthetic steroid, but a pure form of testosterone. It is used under physician care for many medical benefits. The goal of hormone replacement therapy is to keep abnormal hormone levels normal and to treat certain medical conditions, not to build muscles and strength. Hormone replacement therapy has been used for reductions of heart disease, abnormal cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, strokes, type-2 diabetes, and early death. In fact, the use of testosterone in hormone replacement therapy has improved the lives of a many aging men. Previously they were diagnosed with no sex drive, with erectile dysfunction, extreme fatigue, irritability, a serious loss of energy, and felt their life was going nowhere.

In contrast to self-regulated/self-administered steroid abuse, Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is a medically supervised regimen that seeks to duplicate the body’s natural testosterone production cycles. Administered properly, HRT can bring about the benefits of restoring testosterone to its previous level, without the significant side effects or safety hazards associated with self-regulated/self-administered steroid regimens or abuse. HRT starts with a blood test and medical examination to determine testosterone levels and uncover any potential health risks. This is an important-and necessary–step in order to be certain that testosterone deficiency is indeed the root of the andropause symptoms and not diabetes, hypertension or the result of taking certain medications.

Through HRT testosterone is administered orally, by injection or through trans-dermal systems (through the skin). A fourth method-a tablet that adheres to the surface of the gum-was recently approved by the FDA. HRT has proven beneficial to men suffering from symptoms of andropause resulting from a testosterone deficiency in a number of ways including:

Increasing sex drive

Increasing muscle mass

Increasing strength

Improving mood

Increasing bone density

These are just some of the benefits that are associated with a properly-administered, medically-supervised HRT regimen. Once treatment begins, HRT recipients are monitored for possible side effects or adverse reactions to the treatment. Generally though, this is not the case. The overwhelming majority of HRT recipients are very satisfied with the results, generally reporting few, if any, negative side effects or consequences. While many of us like to think that we’re smart guys and know what we’re doing with our own bodies, the risks associated with self-administered/self-regulated steroid regimens far outweigh any potential benefits. And in addition, the potential for abuse is great. If you think you may be suffering from andropause/testosterone deficiency, do yourself a favor and consult a qualified medical professional and investigate hormone replacement therapy as a treatment, not your friends at the gym.

Low Test

June 25, 2014

Is Male Menopause Real?

Low Test symptoms may be to blame for a sluggish sex drive, fatigue, and erectile dysfunction (ED).

Are you feeling tired and cranky, and your sex drive isn’t doing much for you? You may even have some issues with ED, also known as erectile dysfunction. It is possible you could be going through “the change?” Turns out, midlife hormonal fluctuations aren’t just a “woman issue.” Mature males can have menopause as well — in the form of low testosterone (Low T).

Low Test can bring down your self esteem.

The word “male menopause” — which also goes by andropause or, as some have dubbed it,”men-o-PAUSE” — is a bit of a misnomer, but the physical state of being is very real.

What does Low Test mean?

Whereas women experience a sudden drop in hormones that signals a change in their ability to reproduce, with male menopause the result is a gradual decline in testosterone. Because it happens slowly (over a period of years), the symptoms of male menopause (e.g., fatigue, sluggish sex drive, irritability, depression, muscle loss, and erectile dysfunction) may be subtle and hard to detect.

Men’s testosterone levels fall naturally as we age — on average, about 1% a year after age 30. By the time you reach 70 years of age, your testosterone levels may drop more than half its peak. Though aging is the main cause of Low Test, there are other conditions and medications, such as testicular cancer, a scrotum injury, chemotherapy, radiation treatment, and mumps, are all possible culprits.

How can I know if it is Low Test?

Are you tired, irritable, and/or disinterested in all the things that once brought you joy, including sex? If you think  you may have Low T, Core Medical Group can order a blood test, but only after ruling out other causes, such as depression. Symptoms of Low Test, such as fatigue and erectile dysfunction, may also mimic depression. It can also present as a side effect of heart disease, obesity, or other health condition. Core Medical Group will help you figure out if an underlying medical condition, such as an autoimmune disorder, is causing your Low Test results.

Once we review your completed Medical History forms, we will schedule you to get required blood work plus acomprehensive medical evaluation. We have a national network of labs and will locate one close to you or schedule a Core Medical Group phlebotomist to come to your Dallas location. If you already have blood work and it has all of the necessary tests required and is less than one year old we may opt to use it if the proper biomarkers meet our medical criteria.

Core Medical Group
3333 Lee Parkway Suite 600 • Dallas, TX 75219
866-641-CORE (2673)

CORE Medical Group

June 18, 2014

CORE Medical Group is a group of professionals serving the state of Texas. Core is dedicated to revolutionizing the anti-aging process. CORE Medical Group strives to bring an innovative approach to battling the many effects of aging experienced by many adult men and women. We customize a unique treatment for each client with the sole objective of improving their quality of life.

We also specialize in Erectile Dysfunction (ED) and Testosterone Replacement Therapy!


A short brief about Testosterone Therapy by Core Medical Group

If you are reading this it is probably because you do not feel like your normal self. You’re lethargic and your energy isn’t what it used to be. You are having trouble focusing and perhaps your exercise routine isn’t responding the same way it did 5 years ago. Your sex drive may be down and are experiencing symptoms of erectile dysfunction. Low Testosterone or a Low Test count may be responsible!

According to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), 4 to 5 million American men may suffer from low testosterone, but only 5% are currently treated. What about the remaining 95%? Could you be one of them?


Introducing CORE Medical Group’s Dr. Schmidt.

CORE Medical Group’s professional team is led by Dr. Michael Schmidt. Our doctor has over 25 years of experience as a family practitioner. Dr. Schmidt joined Core Medical Group to implement his unique approach in treating the adverse effects of aging and hormone deficiency. Dr. Schmidt’s career began as an emergency room physician where he soon developed a passion for the treatment of patients suffering from chronic disease. In his treament of these patients, particularly those with diabetes, Dr. Schmidt took notice of a disturbing trend of severe hormone deficiencies. Discovering that once the hormone imbalance was addressed, the patients made dramatic strides in their recovery. This understanding was the catalyst for his complete dedication to treating those suffering from low levels of hormones essential for the body to perform at optimum levels.


If you are ready to get started, download our patient forms here:
Call Core Medical Group today so we can help you out of the shadows of hormone imbalances!

3333 Lee Parkway, Suite 600 • Dallas, TX 75219

HRT Clinic, Florida

February 12, 2013

Are you suffering from low test? Adult Hormone Deficiency can be reversed!

Core Medical Group is the premiere HRT Clinic of Florida.

As we get older, humans slow down. It is a fact of life we cannot deny. As we get older, our body just works a little differently. Sometimes, that’s not a bad thing: we mature in our thinking, we gain insight on how to do things more efficently, and we make more money thanks to our skills. However, in return we feel the effects of some very basic deterioration. Have you ever felt that:

  • Like life is catching up to you?
  • That your strength isn’t what it used to be?
  • That your love life isn’t as satisfying as it could be?
  • That the burdens of life are just a bit heavier?

This could be the result of low hormone production. While it is a natural decline in the body’s ability to produce due to age, the effects of losing these hormones are devastating, especially for those of us (like you) who have gotten up and done something with their lives. It hurts to slow down, but it hurts worse to know that your slowdown is out of your control.

Well, it’s not out of your control anymore.

What is Male Menopause?

With Hormone Replacement Therapy by Core Medical Group, you can easily replenish your supplies of testosterone or estrogen, alleviating the symptoms of hormone loss. The treatments are safe, effective, and legal. The replenished hormones will help you feel young and vibrant again, like the world can’t catch you. We know you have ambition—now it’s time to eliminate your limitations!

Our HRT Clinics of Florida utilize a national network of trained HRT physicians that can test, diagnose, and create a safe but effective individualized treatment program for you.

Your youthful vigor
Enjoyment of your love life again
A better mood
A body fully able to keep up with you
Check out Core Medical Group HRT Clinics and see if it’s for you!

Find out if you are out of balance.
Get more information.