Endocrine Society calls for large-scale studies to evaluate testosterone therapy risks

According to a statement issued today by the Endocrine Society, the risks and benefits of testosterone therapy for older men with declining levels of the hormone need to be fully evaluated.

The statement comes in response to recent studies that have raised concerns about the safety of in older men with a history of heart disease. Two retrospective analyses and one randomized trial supported by the Veterans Health Care System, and the National Institutes of Health found a higher rate of cardiovascular events in men who received testosterone and had preexisting heart problems. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has announced it plans to evaluate the safety of testosterone therapy.

Testosterone is approved for the treatment of hypogonadism due to known diseases of the testes, pituitary and hypothalamus. Although the use of testosterone therapy is increasing, the treatment has not been approved for the treatment of age-related symptoms or the age-related decline of .

Important safety data are expected from the NIA's ongoing randomized trial examining testosterone in about 800 older men with unequivocally and accompanying symptoms, including sexual and physical dysfunction. The trial's structure and careful monitoring of will help provide important safety information.

The Society calls for the development of more large-scale randomized controlled trials to determine the true risks and benefits of testosterone therapy in older men.

In the statement, the Society recommends that middle-aged and who are considering testosterone supplementation for age-related declines should be informed of the potential cardiovascular risks. The Society also believes that it may be prudent not to administer testosterone therapy to men who have had a cardiovascular event (such as myocardial infarction, stroke or acute coronary syndrome) in the preceding six months.

In cases where men are being treated for hypogonadism as a result of known diseases of the testes, pituitary and hypothalamus, however, patients should consult their providers before making any changes to their medication regimen. The Society believes testosterone is generally safe and beneficial when used to treat young, hypogonadal men with these conditions. The Society's Clinical Practice Guideline on testosterone therapy in this population is available at http://www.endocrine.org/~/media/endosociety/Files/Publications/Clinical%20Practice%20Guidelines/FINAL-Androgens-in-Men-Standalone.pdf.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Midrange testosterone levels better for older men

Jan 10, 2014

(Medical Xpress)—Optimal levels of testosterone - meaning neither low nor high - in older men are associated with better survival, according to a study recently published by a team of UWA researchers in ...

FDA will review safety of testosterone therapy

Feb 03, 2014

(HealthDay)—Spurred by a recent report that popular testosterone treatments might raise men's heart risk, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it now plans a review of the therapies' safety.

Recommended for you

The 'fifth taste,' umami, could be beneficial for health

9 hours ago

The umami taste could have an important and beneficial role in health, according to research published in the open access journal Flavour. The journal's special series of articles 'The Science of Taste' also finds that ' ...

Why menthol chills your mouth when it's not actually cold

Jan 22, 2015

Try putting an ice-cube in your mouth. The insides of your mouth and tongue instantly turn numb. Hold it in still and you will feel pain. Now try sucking on peppermint. The mint itself is at room temperature, ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.