Testosterone propionate is the shortest ester, which means it leaves the parent hormone (testosterone) in the least amount of time. When testosterone propionate enters the bloodstream, the enzyme “esterase” breaks the bond between ester and testosterone. The esters will be removed from the body leaving the testosterone free. The half-life of testosterone is just 2 to 4 hours, when propionate is bonded to it, the half-life increases to about four and a half days.
The testosterone promotes nitrogen retention in the muscle which in-turn increases the protein levels, leading to increased size and strength of the muscle. It also increases the body’s IGF-1 levels, which plays a key role in coordinating growth and metabolism.
Testosterone propionate is an oil-based compound and is injected into the body through intramuscular route. It is injected into the strong muscle, usually buttock muscle, every other day, not more than thrice a week. Athletes can use it twice a week. The drug should not be given to the vein. Increasing the dose and abrupt discontinuation of the drug may cause complications, and should be done only after consulting the doctor.
Testosterone propionate inj. should not be prescribed if the patient is allergic to testosterone. It should be avoided in patients with:
Certain precautions should be followed for effective use of the drug:
The following tests are usually performed to monitor the progress of the condition and to check for the side effects:
Testosterone propionate inj. has very few side effects when taken in safer dose i.e., 4ml per week or less. The severity and side effects depend on the dose, duration of circulating free testosterone, and its conversion to estrogen. Prolong use or taking the drug in higher dose may cause gynecomastia (formation of breast tissue in males), water retention, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. Also, taking exogenous testosterone suppresses the body’s natural production of testosterone. However, once the drug intake stops, the natural production of testosterone begin.
The patient may feel pain, irritation, and redness at the injection site; however, this does not long for more than three days. The drug gets easily converted into estrogen which may cause gynacomastia, acne, and hair loss.
The side effects can be managed by taking a diet full of healthy omega fatty acids and exercising regularly.
Overdose: If the patient takes increased dose or uses it for a longer time than prescribed, especially for muscle-enhancing effects, he or she may likely show abnormal drug-seeking behavior. The overdose may also increase the risk of heart disease stroke, liver disease, ruptured tendons, or ligament.
Missed dose: It is very important to take each specified dose as directed by the doctor to get the best possible results. If you miss the dose, consult the doctor immediately to establish a new dosing schedule. Do not double the dose.
Pregnant women should not take this drug as it hampers the fetal development. The drug is passed into the breast milk, therefore, breastfeeding women should avoid taking this drug.
Patients taking the below listed medications should avoid testosterone propionate injection as drug- drug interactions such as bleeding have been reported.