Arimidex: The MVP of Fighting Andropause (anastrozole) is one of the most effective choices for fighting the adverse symptoms of andropause, such as fatigue, lowered libido, depression, and weight gain. This is a drug approved by the FDA for treating breast cancer in women, but I have been a pioneer in its use as a hormone balancer for men. Arimidex is a highly safe and effective drug that stops the process in your body that converts testosterone into estrogen and sets off a series of reactions in the brain that signals it to produce more testosterone. It is extremely potent and in some cases restores a youthful testosterone/estrogen ratio in a matter of weeks.
The major drawback to Arimidex is the price, and it may not be covered by insurance as it is primarily a breast cancer medication. Its potency partially solves that problem because it is extremely effective in very low doses. Taking excessive doses of Arimidex can lower your estrogen too much, which can decrease your bone density and HDL cholesterol levels (good cholesterol), reduce your sex drive, and cause depression, among other side effects. Arimidex should be taken in very small doses, and those who take it should be closely monitored by their physicians. The FDA also has recently approved two new drugs that are similar to Arimidex: Femara (letrozole) and Aromasin (exemestane), which are also drugs that may turn out to be more cost-effective than Arimidex, although more research needs to be done.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy.
For some men, Arimidex is not enough to combat andropause, and they may require some other method of increasing testosterone. Testosterone has been falsely accused of being a dangerous anabolic steroid that causes overly aggressive behavior and only recently has testosterone replacement or augmentation therapy become more widely accepted. Until recently, doctors across the country have been extremely reluctant to prescribe testosterone for anyone except those suffering from a severely debilitative condition, anemia, or another serious disease.
In the past, on the rare occasion when testosterone was prescribed, the therapy was incredibly inconvenient and required weekly injections. In addition, testosterone injections often produced either wildly fluctuating testosterone levels or very high levels, which caused natural testosterone production to shut down almost completely. Men on this old from of testosterone replacement therapy often were various pills that contained testosterone or testosterone-like synthetic hormones that were often toxic to the liver and heart and only mildly effective at restoring youthful testosterone levels.
Fortunately for the andropause men out there, the FDA has recently approved Androgel, a testosterone gel that can simply be rubbed on the skin every morning. No injections are required, and you don’t have to take any pills. Androgel is very convenient to use, and studies have shown it to be extremely effective at boosting and maintaining testosterone levels without the likelihood of shutting down the body’s testosterone production or causing liver toxicity. Androgel is remarkably effective for promoting success in men’s diet and exercise programs, helping them both lose fat and aging muscle. Many men also experience a variety of other positive effects, such as increased energy, sex drive, erectile function, and improved mood.
Unlike Arimidex, Androgel is often covered by health insurance if a medical deficiency in testosterone can be established. The decision to use Arimidex, Androgel or both is a personal choice that depends on my patient’s medical profiles and lifestyle desires.
What is Arimidex?
In women, Arimidex is a potent treatment used against breast cancer. In men, it acts to raise testosterone levels. This is because it is specifically designed to limit the body’s production of estrogen.
Arimidex was developed by experts at the reputable pharmaceutical company, AstraZeneca. It was engineered to block the function of an enzyme called aromatase. Aromatase is the enzyme the body uses to convert androgen hormones into estrogen. By inhibiting aromatase, Arimidex stops the body from synthesizing more estrogen. This was originally developed to starve breast cancer tumors that needed estrogen to survive. But while it acts as an ant-carcinogen in women, Arimidex has a much different effect on men.
Estrogen is actually created when aromatase converts testosterone into a different form. By preventing aromatase’s functions, Arimidex preserves higher testosterone levels. Higher testosterone is responsible for a wide range of benefits, especially for bodybuilders. With more bioavailable amounts of testosterone, the body can spark more anabolic muscle growth, accelerate metabolism, and improve overall body composition. Arimidex has also proven useful when using prohormones and steroids. By limiting estrogen, it can protect athletes from symptoms like man-breasts and water retention.
Reports of weakened bones and fractures were reported among women who used Arimidex to fight breast cancer. It is unclear how frequent these side effects occur among male users but it should be a detail worth thinking over if you’re considering using Arimidex.