Testosterone (Absorbed through the skin)


Testosterone (tes-TOS-ter-one)

Raises the amount of testosterone in your body when your body does not make enough natural testosterone. Testosterone is a male hormone.

Brand Name(s)


When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

How to Use This Medicine


  • All Types of Patches:
    • Your doctor will tell you how many patches to use, where to apply them, and how often to apply them. Do not use more patches or apply them more often than your doctor tells you to.
    • Read and follow the patient instructions that come with this medicine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
    • It is best to apply the patch at the same time every day.
    • Wash your hands with soap and water before and after applying a patch.
    • Leave the patch in its sealed wrapper until you are ready to put it on. Tear the wrapper open carefully. NEVER CUT the wrapper or the patch with scissors. Do not use any patch that has been cut by accident.
    • Bathing or swimming should not affect the patch. Wait for at least 3 hours after you apply the medicine before you shower, swim, or wash the application site. Heavy exercise and sweating may cause the patch to fall off.
    • Put the patch back on the same spot if it comes off. If the patch will not stick and you have been wearing it for less than 12 hours, put on a new patch. Then replace it with a fresh patch at your next regular time. If you have been wearing the patch for more than 12 hours, do not put on a new patch. Wait to put on a new patch at your next regular time.
  • Androderm® Skin Patch:
    • Do not apply the Androderm® Skin Patch to your scrotum or genital area. Your body may absorb too much medicine if you apply the patch to your scrotum. Ask your doctor if you have questions about this.
    • The patient instructions will show the body areas where you can wear the patch. When putting on each new patch, choose a different place within these areas. Do not put the new patch on the same place you wore the last one. Be sure to remove the old patch before applying a new one.
    • Do not apply the Androderm® Skin Patch over a bony area (such as your shoulder). Do not apply the patch to an area that might be under pressure for a long time (such as the back of your leg when you are sitting).
    • Apply the patch to clean, dry skin that has very little hair or no hair. Do not put the patch over burns, cuts, or irritated skin. Do no put the patch on oily or sweaty skin.
    • Apply the Androderm® Skin Patch at night.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you forget to wear or change a patch, put one on as soon as you can if it has been less than 12 hours since you were supposed to put on a patch. If it is almost time to put on your next patch, wait until then to apply a new patch and skip the one you missed. Do not apply extra patches to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the patches at room temperature in a closed container, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Fold the used patch in half with the sticky sides together. Throw any used patch away so that children or pets cannot get to it. You will also need to throw away old patches after the expiration date has passed.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you also use a blood thinner (such as warfarin, Coumadin®), oxyphenbutazone (Tandearil®), insulin, propranolol (Inderal®), or a steroid medicine (such as methylprednisolone, prednisone, or Medrol®).

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • All types of patches:
    • The medicine may cause birth defects if a pregnant woman comes in contact with the patch or medicine. Tell your doctor if your sexual partner is pregnant or if a pregnancy occurs while you are using this medicine.
    • A woman who comes in contact with this medicine or the patch should wash her skin area thoroughly with soap and water to remove the medicine. Talk to your doctor if your female partner starts to have male-like changes, such as unusual hair growth.
    • Make sure your doctor knows if you have heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease, blood disorder, diabetes, high calcium in the blood, lung disease, prostate problems, or sleep apnea (a sleep disorder). Tell your doctor if you have been addicted to drugs.
    • Your doctor will do lab tests at regular visits to check on the effects of this medicine. Keep all appointments. You should have all of your blood tests done at the same laboratory.
  • Androderm® Skin Patch:
    • This medicine may increase the risk of prostate cancer. Make sure your doctor knows if you have prostate cancer or if anyone in your family has prostate cancer.
    • This medicine may decrease the amount of sperm you make. Talk with your doctor before you use this medicine if you plan to have children.
    • This medicine may cause swelling of the breasts (gynecomastia) and breast pain in some patients. Talk to your doctor if you have questions about this.
    • This medicine may cause changes in the level of cholesterol and fats in your blood. You may need medicine if this happens. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns.
    • You may have mild skin blisters, redness, itching, or swelling where the Androderm® Skin Patch is placed. Talk to your doctor about ways to prevent or treat these problems.
    • The Androderm® Skin Patch contains aluminum. The aluminum may cause skin burns at the patch site if you have a procedure called a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan. You must remove the patch before your MRI to prevent skin burns.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • All Types of Patches:
    • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
    • Breathing problems, especially snoring or trouble breathing at night
    • Change in how much or how often you urinate or problems urinating
    • Dark-colored urine or pale stools
    • Erections that happen too often or last too long
    • Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, or pain in your upper stomach
    • Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes
  • Androderm® Skin Patch:
    • Enlarged or painful breasts
    • Pain, swelling, or redness of your legs
    • Severe skin blisters, redness, swelling, or burning where the patch is applied
    • Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • All Types of Patches:
    • Headache
  • Androderm® Skin Patch:
    • Back pain
    • Mild skin itching or redness where the patch is placed

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last reviewed on 8/4/2014

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