Compare Androgel vs. Depo-Testosterone

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Androgel
(Testosterone Gel)

Depo-Testosterone
(Testosterone Cypionate Injection)

Treats low testosterone. This testosterone gel is a convenient topical form of hormone replacement, but you have to be careful about it rubbing off on other people. Also it can be cheaper than alternatives.Treats low testosterone. This testosterone injection only has to be given once or twice a month and you can do it at home, but someone has to help you inject.
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Reviews & ratings
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Reviews for Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate Injection)
48%
9% vs. Androgel (Testosterone Gel)
31%
40% vs. Androgel (Testosterone Gel)
17%
3% vs. Androgel (Testosterone Gel)
Side effects
AndrogelDepo-Testosterone

The Androgel FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Androgel side effects »

The Depo-Testosterone FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Depo-Testosterone side effects »
How it works
AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
Testosterone gel works by adding or replacing the hormone testosterone in your body. Testosterone is responsible for causing and maintaining many of the changes in male bodies from puberty on.The testosterone injection works by adding or replacing the hormone testosterone in your body. Testosterone is responsible for causing and maintaining many of the changes in male bodies from puberty on.
Type of medication
AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
Hormone replacement
Testosterone
Prescription only
Hormone replacement
Testosterone
Prescription only
Available as
AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
  • Cream, gel, or ointment
  • Injection
Used for (click to learn more)
AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
  • Low testosterone
  • Low testosterone
Risk factors for serious side effects
AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
Coming soon.
  • Male
  • Male
  • Enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hypertrophy)
  • Taking high doses of Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate Injection)
  • Heart, liver or kidney disease
  • Inability to move
  • Cancer
      • Diabetes
      • On blood thinners
        Detailed Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate Injection) risks & warnings »
        Pregnancy category
        AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
        XFDA pregnancy category (Unsafe)

        Research studies with real people or animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. If you’re pregnant, the risks to your unborn baby outweigh the benefits.

        See the FDA package insert
        XFDA pregnancy category (Unsafe)

        Research studies with real people or animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. If you’re pregnant, the risks to your unborn baby outweigh the benefits.

        See the FDA package insert
        Alcohol
        No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
        Food
        No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
        Kidneys and liver
        No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
        • There have been reports of people on Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate Injection) who have developed high levels of calcium in the blood, which can be bad for the kidneys. This can happen if you are unable to move around or have cancer. If you notice a metallic taste in your mouth, muscle or joint pain or a bad headache, talk to your doctor, since they may have to stop the medication.
        Sex
        No specific sex-related info.
        • Can cause increased acne and changes in sex drive.
        • If you're a man taking Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate Injection), you can see changes in your sex drive, including overstimulation and prolonged frequent erections. Talk to your doctor if this happens, since they might have to change the dose.
        Sleep
        No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
        Weight
        No specific weight-related info.
        • If you're taking Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate Injection), and you notice swelling in your legs, or a sudden increase in your weight, talk to your doctor. This can be a serious side effect involving your heart.
        Upsides and benefits
        AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
        • You put it on like a lotion, so it's very easy to apply.
        • Available in generic, so it's cheaper than some alternatives.
        • A first-choice treatment for low testosterone in men and delayed puberty in boys.
        • Available in generic.
        • Only has to be given once every 2 to 4 weeks.
        • The shot can be done at home.
        Downsides and risks
        AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
        • You have to make sure that you cover the area where you place testosterone gel after it's dry, otherwise it can rub off on people.
        • You have to wait at least 2 hours before you shower or swim after putting on Testosterone gel, otherwise your body won't absorb the entire amount.
        • Only available as a shot.
        • Has to be given by someone else since it has to be injected into your buttocks.
        Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
        AndrogelDepo-Testosterone
        • How to put it on: Don't put testosterone gel anywhere else except where you're taught by the doctor or pharmacist, usually the shoulders and upper arms. Don't put it around your genitals. Wash your hands with soap and water and dry them afterward. Cover the area with clothing as soon as it's dry so you don't spread it to other people.
        • Don't bathe or swim for at least 2 hours after you've put on testosterone gel so that it has time to absorb.
        • If you think you'll have skin-to-skin contact with someone else at the area where you've placed testosterone gel, wash that area with soap and water and dry. If someone else touches the area before you've washed it off, have them wash their skin with soap and water as soon as they can.
        • Your doctor will show you how to inject this correctly.
        • Can cause nausea, vomiting and headache.
        • Can cause increased acne and changes in sex drive.
        • Keep this medication locked up and away from children since it's a controlled substance.
        Learn more
        More about AndrogelSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
        More about Depo-TestosteroneSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert