High Estrogen vs Low Estrogen Symptoms  (For Men)

High Estrogen vs Low Estrogen Symptoms (For Men)

One of the hardest hormones to control while on testosterone replacement therapy is estrogen. This is statement is more true if you’re overweight or have a high BMI count. (All the more reason to start exercising if you’re not already)  Men will sometimes report that their TRT started out great only for it to “stop working” a few months into therapy. Doctors well versed in TRT will likely send you out for an estrogen test and start you on an aromatase inhibitor such as Arimidex if high estrogen is the cause. This powerful drug, if not used correctly however can lead to tanked estrogen levels which come along with symptoms as bad as high E2 levels! The goal is a balance. Let’s take a look at the symptoms of both:

Low Estradiol Symptoms: 

  • Fatigue along the lines of sleepiness
  • hypersomnia (sleeping too much and too often)
  • strong erections but limited sensitivity
  • loss of erections
  • osteoporosis and osteopenia
  • joint pain, clicking or popping joints
  • eye fatigue (eyes seem more tired despite adequate sleep, dark circles)
  • loss of libido (interest in sex)
  • difficulty retaining water (constant urination)
  • anxiety, depression, irritability

High Estradiol Symptoms: 

  • Soft erections, inability to maintain an erection
  • water retention (less frequent urination), leading to excessive sweating, blood pressure spikes or high blood pressure (from the water retention)
  • insomnia
  • hot flushing (flushing around the ears or on the face)
  • night sweats (from estradiol lowering, causing loss of water retention)
  • bloating; brain fog (like your head’s in a bubble)
  • testicles seem smaller than usual


As you can see Estrogen, when not managed correctly, can wreak absolute havoc on the male body. What I’ve found best in all of this is, listen to your body. I’ve had multiple blood tests done, visits to the doctor and without a doubt my body was always telling me what my doctor confirmed. Listen to it. If you have any of the above symptoms get yourself in for a blood test as soon as possible and then speak with your doctor about treatment. (If you’re a cash patient, see my post about how to save money on blood work) If you’re doctor refuses to provide you with the medication you need, switch doctors.

I should note that when my estrogen levels were at their peak (249) I tried to lower them by using a large dose of Arimidex (1mg). I immediately fell into a deep depression not like anything I’d ever experienced before. I’d stopped going to the gym and gained a hefty amount of weight (While Arimidex is supposed to lower bloating, in my case, too much resulted in the exact opposite).

My doctor had mentioned that I needed to lower the fat in my body in order to prevent my testosterone from converting into estrogen. (and rightly so) But I was so exhausted just making it to the grocery store and paying bills was a difficult goal for the day. What a horrible time that was. Thankfully, I’m now on my way to a well balanced controlled schedule of Arimidex and a lower dosage of testosterone.  Within days I started to feel better and I’m back to playing outside with my kids, learning new sheets on the piano, running in the morning and lifting a few weight during the week. It’s also the primary reason I started Dosage May Vary. I wouldn’t wish some of my estrogen symptoms on my worst enemy.

UPDATE 6/14/2017: Since writing this post I no longer use Arimidex. It’s simply far too easy to tank your E2 levels. Arimidex does not work like Tylenol. (Meaning it doesn’t work within hours. Instead it can take days for your E2 levels to drop. Additionally, you may inadvertently cause your E2 levels to “tank”. You may attempt to raise them by giving yourself a higher dose of Testosterone. But this is ultimately a yo yo recipe for disaster. So what’s the best way to manage your E2 levels? Splitting my dosage. I’d read about this many times online but really didn’t want to deal with the hassle of two shots every week. Hindsight is 20/20, it’s the best decision I ever made. I generally no longer have E2 troubles. My energy levels are back to normal, my weight is under control (down almost 30 pounds with exercise!) and my sexual performance is relatively normal. 

Quick Tests You Perform At Home

1. Ring finger test – If you wear a ring and you notice it fitting tighter than normal you are likely bloating. This is usually a pretty good indicator you’re holding onto water which can mean high estradiol.

2. Weight – If you’re weight has gone up especially in the morning you likely have some water retention going on

3. Fatigue – This one is the worst. When my E2 levels were around 249 fatigue was an understatement. I was absolutely shot and could hardly function. I was tired all day even after 8 hours of rest. I’m self employed and that much down time is devastating to my business. If you’re waking up after a good nights rest only to be tired again in a few hours or your eyes seem constantly heavy or tired throughout the day, your estrogen is probably high.

Don’t rely on the home tests, get your bloodwork pulled as soon as possible. This is treatable! Once you’re able to regain your energy levels do your best to eat a healthy diet and bring your weight down. For more on estrogen control visit the Estrogen Control section.



Suicide Hotline: 

  1. When you dial 1-800273-TALK (8255), you are calling the crisis center in the Lifeline network closest to your location. After you call, you will hear a message saying you have reached the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Estrogen can wreak havoc on your body and can lead to major depression. It’s not you, it’s your hormones! Remember this is manageable and can be corrected quickly, see your doctor as soon as possible so he can help address your E2 levels. If you’ve gone into a major depression get into an urgent care, don’t wait for your appointment. 


  • sal Posted August 23, 2016 4:53 am

    In the estrogen symptoms you said fatigue in the lines of sleepenes is a sign of low estrogen, later in the home test you said if you wake up after 8 hr sleep and are tired and fatigue it’s high estrogen.. So fatigue is low or high estrogen????!!!!!!

    • James Posted August 23, 2016 12:26 pm

      Both! The point I was trying to make was that even after a solid 8 hours of sleep, I still felt tired (which isn’t normal) and thus is a sign your E levels are too high. In other words, constant fatigue not remedied by sleep.

    • James Posted June 14, 2017 9:15 pm

      After updating the website, I re-read this comment and realized I did not answer your question very well. I’m going to update this post. While most men report fatigue when their E2 levels were low, my experience it was the opposite. I actually wrote another post about this. I should have (and will) clarify this better in the post above.

      In case you happen to be going through the same thing, I’m actually no longer taking Arimidex. I’ve switch to injecting twice weekly rather than once. This has resulted in less “highs and lows” as well as resolved my E2 issues. The theory behind this method as that you give your body just the right amount of testosterone, thus, lower the chance of conversion. At any rate, for me personally it’s completely resolved any of the prior issues I had. It took about 2 weeks or so for things to balance out but these days I feel pretty normal.

  • Bill culbertson Posted October 14, 2016 10:54 pm

    Hi, I had labs and my doctor told me my T level was 96, I was put on 400mg(2ml) of Watson testosterone injection every 2 weeks. He let me give the shots myself. First 2 weeks I noticed more clarity, I felt pretty good. Then it went down hill. I have taken a total of 4 injections now and feel like crap. Anxiety, really hard to sleep well, zero energy, water retention and skin feels like I used olive oil on my face. I went to Dr today(my regular Dr was off) seen a PA, she kept saying, let’s check your thyroids, do diabetes test, let’s send you for sleep apnea study. I kept telling her, I read many articles online and I need my estrogen level checked. Was ridiculous, I just had a lab done during a physical that tested my blood sugar(was perfect), thyroid tests always been good and I don’t even snore and even asked my wife if she ever heard anything odd when I am sleeping and she said No. Finally the Dr agreed to test my estrogen, so will find out results in 3 days. As I am now, is beyond horrible, I have never had this low energy or anxiety ever.

    • Ray Posted December 15, 2016 7:27 pm

      I am glad you guys posted this. Thank you for sharing. I was on 200mg weekly shots of cypionate. I’ve had the best 6 months after I started the TRT treatment. After this period it went down hill. I noticed I could not sleep and somehow I developed anxiety. I had never experienced anxiety in my entire so this was new and quite shocking to me. I went to my regular doctor and he prescribed anxiety and sleeping pills. It has been a back and forth with my urologist that prescribed the TRT treatment but he’s never even brought up the estrogen topic. To ma things worse I have developed very bad acne in my back and shoulders. I just stopped the cypionate 10 days ago and asked for an estrogen test. I am not against TRT but based on my experience it has to be managed very well with someone that understands all possible angles and not only testosterone shots. I will post my results next week after checking latest lab work. If anyone wants to know more drop me an email.

    • Tj Price Posted January 11, 2017 11:59 am

      Let me know what happened i am going through it now! Iam afraid to do another shot now and Iam going through bad wd’s.

    • B Posted March 28, 2017 1:18 am

      That may be too much testosterone too. For myself the best dosage is 150 a week and I do sub Q which is a lot better and more bang for your buck. It’s also easier too because sub Q is simple and quick. Check your estorgen level but get the ultra sensitive test and not he bogus one that they generally do that is very inaccurate. Check your SBGH too along with prolactin. This should definitely help you get some clarity on what is out of wack! Hope this helps.

  • Jody Baker Posted January 15, 2017 12:05 pm

    What was your diagnosis and result after testing estrogen?

  • Brad W Nichols Posted March 6, 2017 5:30 am

    I’ve been on steroids for 15 year’s, just turned 50 . Noticed something is not right, tired no motivation, I workout at 4 in the morning, missing workouts, no insurance never had blood work done. Currently taking Test DECA Equipoise D bol and then. Taking aromisin when nipples get tinder, take very little time off, cruising right now on 250 test e every week. Please respond worried. Brad thanks

  • Mario Bryant Posted March 19, 2017 2:33 pm

    Diagnosing high blood pressure is usually done during your annual visit to your primary care doctor or the nurse practitioner. They can help get your blood pressure down to a manageable level through medication and recommendations for lifestyle modifications in nutrition and exercise.

  • Pravachol Posted March 23, 2017 12:11 am

    62 you male with multiple issue – insomnia, fatigue, anxiety, low sex drive, dysphagia, chemical sensitivity.
    recent blood work:
    testosterone 640 ng/dL
    free testosterone 6.0 ng/dL (0.9%) low
    SHBG 97 nmol/L high
    estradiol 9 pg/ml low
    Thyroid parameters all in normal range
    Any comments on what might be the upstream cause?

    • Rakshesh Patel Posted April 13, 2017 11:42 am

      For men, normal total estradiol levels are somewhere between 20–55 pg/mL (2.0–5.5 ng/dL) and 10-40 pg/mL (1.0-4.0 ng/dL), depending on who you ask.

    • Frankie J Posted April 18, 2017 3:20 pm

      Your SHBG is way too high. This is the reason your free T is so low. It’s blocking your free T from being available to use by your body. You need to lower that. Also your estrodial is very low. Back off on the estrogen blockers a little. Your body needs some estrogen to function properly. Between 20-30 seems to be the sweet spot for most.

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