Compare Androgel vs. Testopel

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

Androgel
(Testosterone Gel)

Testopel
(Testosterone Implant)

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. The testosterone implant is a good option for long-term testosterone therapy, but it can be expensive, and it's really important that you get the right dose so your doctor doesn't have to remove pellets.
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Reviews & ratings
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Side effects
AndrogelTestopel

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

More about Androgel side effects »

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

More about Testopel side effects »
How it works
AndrogelTestopel
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 implant 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
AndrogelTestopel
Hormone replacement
Testosterone
Prescription only
Hormone replacement
Testosterone
Prescription only
Available as
AndrogelTestopel
  • Cream, gel, or ointment
  • Implant pellet
Used for (click to learn more)
AndrogelTestopel
  • Low testosterone
  • Low testosterone
Risk factors for serious side effects
AndrogelTestopel
Coming soon.Coming soon.
Pregnancy category
AndrogelTestopel
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.No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
Sex
No specific sex-related info.
  • Can cause increased acne and changes in sex drive.
Sleep
No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
Weight
No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
Upsides and benefits
AndrogelTestopel
  • You put it on like a lotion, so it's very easy to apply.
  • Available in generic, so it's cheaper than some alternatives.
  • Your doctor will give this shot to you every 3 months, so you don't have to worry about administering it yourself like some testosterone injections.
  • Unlike topical forms of testosterone, you don't have to worry about accidentally transferring this medication to another person's skin.
Downsides and risks
AndrogelTestopel
  • 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.
  • Not available in generic form, so it can be more expensive.
  • Your doctor has to calculate your dose for 3 months. If it ends up being too much, the doctor might have to remove some of the implant pellets.
  • The pellets can come out, although this is extremely rare.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
AndrogelTestopel
  • 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 give this you as a shot underneath your skin every 3 months.
  • Can cause nausea, vomiting and headache.
  • Can cause increased acne and changes in sex drive.
Learn more
More about AndrogelSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
More about TestopelSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert