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If you have been diagnosed with low testosterone levels, your healthcare provider may recommend using Axiron, a testosterone replacement that is available only by prescription. The product is applied to the skin, which allows the medication to reach the bloodstream without being metabolized by the liver, which would happen if it were taken by mouth. Axiron is not approved for children.
What Is Axiron Used For?Axiron® (testosterone topical solution) is a prescription testosterone replacement medication. It is approved for treating low testosterone in men.
There are several different causes of low testosterone. Normally, testosterone is produced when the testes are stimulated by certain hormone signals from glands in the brain. Low testosterone can occur due to problems in the brain or the testes.
Axiron can treat low testosterone, whether the problem lies in the testes or the brain, because it does not rely on either the testes or the brain to increase testosterone levels.
Common symptoms of low testosterone include:
- Fatigue and low energy
- Decreased muscle mass and increased fat mass
- Low sex drive (libido)
- Problems with erectile function
- Decreased bone strength
Of course, a man could have all of these symptoms and still have normal testosterone levels, since most of these symptoms are relatively common. The only real way to diagnose low testosterone is by actually measuring testosterone levels in the blood.
Axiron contains the hormone testosterone in a liquid form that is applied to the armpits. It works by increasing testosterone to a normal level. Axiron is used on the skin, rather than taken by mouth, because it would have little effect on testosterone levels if taken by mouth.
When medications are taken by mouth, they must first pass through the liver before they reach the bloodstream. The liver metabolizes testosterone extensively before it has a chance to reach the bloodstream, and adequate blood levels of the medication usually cannot be achieved. However, when testosterone is applied to the skin, it bypasses the liver, allowing significant amounts of the hormone to reach the bloodstream.