Study finds testosterone replacement therapy reduces cardiovascular risk

February 21, 2017, Kaiser Permanente

Men who used testosterone replacement therapy to treat symptoms of androgen deficiency had a 33 percent lower risk of cardiovascular events such as heart attacks and stroke compared to those who did not receive any hormone therapy. The findings from the Kaiser Permanente study were published in JAMA Internal Medicine today.

Androgen deficiency in men is characterized by lower levels of , specifically testosterone, as well as symptoms that include loss of sexual desire, erectile dysfunction, breast enlargement or tenderness, hot flashes, reduced energy, irritability and depressed mood. Similar to women, men experience a normal decline in sex hormone levels beginning in their 30s. The decline in men is gradual and occurs over a number of years. It is estimated that approximately one in 200 men under the age of 60 has testosterone levels below normal, but as many as two in 10 men over the age of 60 have low levels. Not all men with low testosterone levels have symptoms of androgen deficiency.

Symptoms related to androgen deficiency can be treated with given by injection, orally or topically. Some recent studies, however, have raised concerns that testosterone replacement therapy may increase the risk for cardiovascular events such as heart attacks and strokes. Other studies report that in older men are associated with increased cardiovascular risk and that testosterone replacement therapy may have cardiovascular benefits.

"Our study found no indication of an increased risk for for men with androgen deficiency," said T. Craig Cheetham, PharmD, MS, study lead author, Kaiser Permanente Southern California Department of Research & Evaluation. "Our hope is that these findings help alleviate the concerns that patients with androgen deficiency and their doctors may have had about prescribing and taking testosterone replacement therapy."

The study evaluated 44,335 male patients at Kaiser Permanente medical centers in Northern and Southern California who had been diagnosed with between January 1, 1999 and December 31, 2010. Of these, 8,808 men were treated with testosterone replacement therapy, while 35,527 were never dispensed testosterone. The men were followed for a median of 3.4 years and researchers found:

  • Of the men who never received testosterone, 10.2 percent had a heart attack or stroke during the study period.
  • Of those who received testosterone , 8.2 percent had a or stroke during the study period.

Explore further: Testosterone therapy improves sexual interest, function in older men

More information: JAMA Internal Medicine, jamanetwork.com/journals/jamai … ainternmed.2016.9546

Related Stories

Testosterone therapy improves sexual interest, function in older men

June 29, 2016
Older men with low libido and low testosterone levels showed more interest in sex and engaged in more sexual activity when they underwent testosterone therapy, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society's ...

New study finds testosterone replacement therapy does not increase heart risk

November 9, 2015
A new study of generally healthy men who used testosterone replacement therapy to normalize testosterone levels has found that taking supplemental testosterone does not increase their risk of experiencing a heart attack or ...

Normalization of testosterone level after testosterone replacement therapy

August 5, 2015
Patients with low testosterone levels who have then gone on to have testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) could be at lower risk of cardiovascular events such as heart attack or stroke, according to research published today ...

New recommendations addresses the diagnosis and management of testosterone deficiency

July 9, 2015
An expert panel convened by the International Society for Sexual Medicine has developed a detailed "Process of Care" for the diagnosis and management of testosterone deficiency in men.

A stem cell strategy for boosting testosterone levels tested in rodents

December 22, 2016
Male hypogonadism is a condition that diminishes testosterone levels in approximately 30% of older men, but currently available therapies can produce serious side effects. In a study published December 22 in Stem Cell Reports, ...

Recommended for you

Babies and toddlers at greater risk from second-hand smoke than previously thought, study finds

December 16, 2018
Infants and toddlers in low-income communities may be even more at risk from second- and third-hand smoke exposure than has been believed, according to new federally supported research.

A co-worker's rudeness can affect your sleep—and your partner's, study finds

December 14, 2018
Rudeness. Sarcastic comments. Demeaning language. Interrupting or talking over someone in a meeting. Workplace incivilities such as these are becoming increasingly common, and a new study from Portland State University and ...

A holiday gift to primary care doctors: Proof of their time crunch

December 14, 2018
The average primary care doctor needs to work six more hours a day than they already do, in order to make sure their patients get all the preventive and early-detection care they want and deserve, a new study finds.

Teens get more sleep with later school start time, researchers find

December 12, 2018
When Seattle Public Schools announced that it would reorganize school start times across the district for the fall of 2016, the massive undertaking took more than a year to deploy. Elementary schools started earlier, while ...

Large restaurant portions a global problem, study finds

December 12, 2018
A new multi-country study finds that large, high-calorie portion sizes in fast food and full service restaurants is not a problem unique to the United States. An international team of researchers found that 94 percent of ...

Receiving genetic information can change risk

December 11, 2018
Millions of people in the United States alone have submitted their DNA for analysis and received information that not only predicts their risk for disease but, it turns out, in some cases might also have influenced that risk, ...

0 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.