Johnnie V. Cook, MD

Long-time Layton family physician Dr. Johnnie V. Cook now offers his experience and expertise at Tanner Clinic Layton.

He joins Tanner Clinic after nearly 20 years as a physician at the Intermountain Layton Clinic and, more recently, the Intermountain Kaysville Creekside Clinic.

Dr. Cook completed his undergraduate work at Brigham Young University. For his medical training, he spent two years at St. Louis University, St. Louis, Mo., transferring to the University of Utah School of Medicine, where he completed his M.D.

Dr. Cook fulfilled his residency at the McKay-Dee Family Practice Residency with the distinction of being named as Chief Resident in his final year. He returned to the Ogden-based residency program as a faculty member and since 1994 has remained an assistant professor. In that capacity, he worked with several students who are now family physicians at Tanner Clinic, including Dr. Rachel Hobbs and Dr. Ryan Stewart. Dr. Cook also served as chief of the Department of Family Medicine at McKay-Dee Hospital.

The board-certified physician is a fellow of the Academy of Family Physicians.

Dr. Cook’s service to the community and in humanitarian efforts was highlighted when he received the McKay-Dee Hospital Center’s Physician Excellence Award for Community Service. He has served 12 “mini” missions to teach neonatal resuscitation; organized by the LDS Church, these humanitarian expeditions were to such locations as Panama, Nicaragua, Namibia and Botswana. He was recently called by the LDS Church to be a member of the committee overseeing humanitarian projects in Mexico, Central America and South America. He’s also served as an instructor in the neonatal resuscitation program for the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Dr. Cook and his wife Maureen are the parents of five children. Currently, they are foster parents to three children. In spare time, he enjoys camping, hiking, golfing, basketball, biking and softball, with an occasional half-marathon.

Maybe It's Not Just Age: 'Low T' Can Get You Down

The phrase “low T” has become part of our cultural lexicon, thanks to TV commercials showing middle-aged men who, after a boost of testosterone, shed their depression to enjoy exotic sites, beautiful women and vintage cars.

And, in recent years, Dr. Johnnie Cook has found himself talking to a lot more male patients about hypogonadism (low testosterone). “It’s a common thing to have men come in with decreased muscle strength, decreased libido and decreased energy,” said the family physician.

Even if testosterone-replacement therapy is recommended, the Layton-based family physician won’t prescribe sandy beaches. However, he said, “Men will often have more energy, more physical strength, improved libido, less fatigue.”

Glossy advertising aside, we’re hearing more about low testosterone for a couple of reasons. Low levels of testosterone have long been considered simply a part of growing older — rather than a specific diagnosis. Plus, the symptoms mirror those seen in common ailments like diabetes, obesity or depression. Now, a blood test can test whether a man is producing enough of the male hormone.

Low T’s link with osteoporosis

A deficiency in testosterone can cause a silent ailment more commonly seen in women: osteoporosis. “I’ve had men come in who’ve had very low testosterone levels and as a result their bones have gotten thin and they’ve had fractures,” said Dr. Cook. “Increasing the testosterone helped rebuild bones.”

As with all medications, testosterone replacement therapy must be monitored with regular tests. Some studies show it increases the odds of heart disease; others suggest it might speed the growth of prostate cancer, the physician said. In addition, it may result in a high red-blood count, which is associated with hypertension and stroke.

Testosterone comes in several different forms — injections, gels and injectable pellets. Testosterone does not come in a pill form, said Dr. Cook, because the hormone is broken down by the liver and is ineffective.

Delivery methods for testosterone

Type Cost Duration Dr. Cook’s comments
Injections $ Biweekly Least expensive and most common. Patients will experience some peaks and valleys
Gels $$ Daily Gel applied to the torso provides a consistent dose. Common brand names are AndroGel, Testim, Fortesta. One armpit gel, Axiron, works like an antiperspirant
Injectable pellets $$$ 3-6 months The most expensive, the pellets also provides a constant dose. Nebido and Aveed are examples of brand names
In the Media

Dr. Cook discusses the health problems associated with anger in “Getting Angry Puts a Toll on Your Heart” published by the Standard Examiner on May 1, 2015.