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Dr. Rick, MD
Dr. Rick, MD, Board Certified MD
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Experience:  20+ years as a doctor. Internal Medicine Internship in NYC
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Whats the difference between free testosterone and total

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Whats the difference between free testosterone and total testosterone?
my total is 291
my free is 81.8
are those good numbers? and whats the difference?
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The vast majority (98%) of the testosterone in your body is bound up with proteins (SHBG) and is not active or useful for your body.
Only about 2% is unbound, or bound to another compound called albumin, and it is this testosterone that used by your body for all that testosterone does.
Both types are tested for by the lab.
Normal varies from lab to lab, with each place giving a range considered normal for their testing procedure. This number should have been supplied to you with your results and will easily tell you if your values are "normal" for their lab.
That being said, 350 to 1200 ng/dl is considered normal for total T and 5.5 to 12.3 for free T
Remember, though, Normal Free T levels vary by age and drop by about 1% per year....
So. Is your values OK? From what you have posted, your total seems a bit low and your free a bit high....
You need to check with your doctor and lab to be these values into better perspective.
Does this make sense to you?
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Dr. Rick MD FACS
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
The lab that tested me says normal range for free testosterone is 35-155 pg/ml
And for total t(###) ###-####ng/dl
So which value is more important free or total
I do use adroderm low dose testosterone patch
Both are necessary but free is what your body actually uses so, in that light, free could be considered more important.
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Dr. Rick MD FACS
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