September 19, 2011

September 19, 2011
Testosterone Replacement

Welcome to another day in my life. Today is Monday and I hope you had a safe and great weekend. It was a very long and busy weekend for Dab the AIDS Bear and me as we are very busy taking care of responsibilities.

One of the problems that happen to long term survivors of HIV and AIDS, especially males, is problems with testosterone levels. Some times this is because of aging and long term HIV exposure. Some times this is because of HIV wasting being thrown into the mix. I have been suffering with HIV wasting since the early 90s.

I was very fortunate to be in one of the first trials studies linking testosterone treatment for people with HIV and wasting. The study was where I first became good friends with Nelson Vergel who is an activist that is very knowledgeable about the subject matter.

Do you need testosterone replacement? How to know if the rewards outweigh the risks of these powerful drugs.

Fact: There is a lot of money to be made in the field of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT).

How much money? Despite being a relatively new drug treatment and one that is often not covered by insurance, about $400 million a year is being spent on prescriptions in the United States on these drugs. A lot of money is being invested in research as well. In fact, the National Institute of Health is currently sponsoring a $47 million study of 800 men with low testosterone levels. This begs the question if so much money is being spent on using and researching this type of drug therapy, is not that proof that it works at least for some people? If there is one person who can answer that question that person is Nelson Vergel.

For Vergel, a chemical engineer from Venezuela, the topic of hormone replacement therapy is a personal one because in 1983 he contracted HIV. At the time there were few treatments for HIV and Vergel was concerned about the possibility of his muscles wasting away. So he chose what he considered one of the only options he had to survive this disease. He devoted his life to studying hormones. This research led Vergel and coauthor Michael Mooney to write Built to Survive: HIV Welness Guide, now in its fourth edition. But Vergel's passion did not stop there.

Vergel has conducted more than 500 seminars in English and Spanish, in numerous countries. In 1994 Vergel created a nonprofit organization the Program for Wellness Restoration (PoWeR) which the purpose is to disseminate information about how those with HIV can achieve health and productivity. Then in June of 1998 Vergel found the Body Positive Wellness Center in Houston which to date has helped more than 3,800 HIV patients live healthier lives. For all the humanitarian and health related efforts Vergal has made on behalf of the HIV community, the may or the city of Houston designated Sept. 13, 2011 as Nelson Vergel Day.

Vergel's most recent publication is Testosterone: A Man's Guide: Practical Tips for Boosting Physical, Mental and Sexual Vitality (, 2010). For the more than 13 million men who are affected by testosterone deficiency, this book provides the latest research.

Testosterone replacement is becoming more commonplace to the extent that Vergel believe it will soon be a billion dollar a year industry.

So if you have any questions about hormone replacement therapy, problems with HIV and wasting; I would definitely suggest you get Vergel's latest book and his previous one and do your research.

I personally have to do hormone replacement and have being doing so since the 90s. It has been a huge help in my fight while living with HIV and AIDS.

Hope you have a great start to your week!

Until we meet again; here's wishing you health, hope, happiness and just enough.

big bear hug,

Daddy Dab