Navigation Links
Low Testosterone Might Shorten Men's Lives

Study finds it's linked to higher death risk, but replacing the hormone may not help, experts say

TUESDAY, Nov. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Men aged 40 or over with low levels of testosterone may be at increased risk of fatal heart attacks or death from any cause, a British study suggests.

In fact, "The magnitude of the effect was very similar to that of [high] cholesterol or blood pressure," said lead researcher Dr. Kay-Tee Khaw, professor of clinical gerontology at the University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine.

However, more work is needed to see whether testosterone supplements should be recommended for men with naturally low levels of the hormone, she said.

"We need to replicate these findings," Khaw said. "We hope we can entice other investigators to look at testosterone levels and see if these findings are confirmed."

Her team published the findings in the Nov. 27 issue of Circulation.

The study included more than 11,600 men ages 40 to 79 who were free of known cardiovascular disease and cancer at the start of the trial. It was done because "there have been lots of studies suggesting that low testosterone may not be good for health," Khaw said. "So, we wanted to see if this could be demonstrated in a large population. Testosterone is hard to measure, the test can be expensive."

The men were divided into four groups based on their blood testosterone levels.

Those men in the highest quarter of testosterone readings -- with at least 19.6 nanomoles of the hormone per liter of blood -- had a 41 percent lower risk of dying over 10 years than those in the lowest quarter of testosterone readings -- less than 12.5 nanomoles of testosterone per liter of blood.

One major question is whether low testosterone is a risk factor itself or just a marker for other risk factors, said Dr. Victor Montori, associate professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. He has done his own studies on testosterone replacement therapy.

"It does not mean that replacing or normalizing levels of testosterone would reverse the outcome," he said. "There are other hormones in the blood that are related to other risk factors, such as diabetes and hypertension."

In any case, a testosterone replacement regimen "would not be a walk in the park," Montori said. "It would be a major intervention."

According to Dr. Jorge Plutzky, director of the Vascular Disease Prevention Program at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, the experience of women taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) shows that hormonal regimens can have their dangers.

Beginning in the 1990s, millions of older American women took HRT, which replaced two female hormones, estrogen and progestin. Early trials had indicated that the therapy might reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attack and stroke in older women.

Instead, the Women's Health Initiative, a major study released in 2002, found that women taking HRT were at increased incidence of stroke, blood clots and breast cancer, noted Plutzky, who is also a spokesman for the American Cancer Society. HRT prescriptions dropped off precipitously after the study's release.

So, much more research is needed on the link between testosterone levels and mortality before doctors can recommend the regimen to men, Khaw said. Such studies might provide "insights and better understanding of disease mechanisms, such as how and why testosterone might be related to poorer health through, for example, insulin metabolism, lipid metabolism or inflammation," she said.

More information

There's more on testosterone at the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCES: Kay-Tee Khaw, MBBChir, professor, clinical gerontology, University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine, England; Victor Montori, M.D., associate professor, medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn; Jorge Plutzky, M.D., director, Vascular Disease Prevention Program, Brigham and Women's Hosputal, Boston; Nov. 27, 2007, Circulation

Copyright©2007 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. 1 in 4 Men Over 30 Has Low Testosterone
2. The latest about male infertility and testosterone from NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell
3. Fish Oil Might Help Relieve MS
4. HIV Drug Might Fight Cancer
5. High and mighty: first common height gene identified by researchers behind obesity gene finding
6. Vitamin C Plus Fat Might Spur Cancer
7. Mathematics might save you a trip to the ER
8. Veggies Might Ward Off Age-Linked Vision Woes
9. Rating your pain from 0 to 10 might not help your doctor
10. Blood Marker Might Help Spot Early Liver Cancer
11. Hushed Genes Might Mean Higher Lung Cancer Risk
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Low Testosterone Might Shorten Men's Lives
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Finnleo, a leader in the ... several models of traditional and far-infrared saunas. , For traditional saunas, Finnleo ... most traditional Finnish sauna wood, and Finnleo uses only European Grade A Nordic White ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... 2015 , ... On November 10, 2015, Bohrer Brady, LLC filed a class ... of a home health care worker who provided companionship services for the elderly, ill ... employed by Humana, Inc., Humana at Home, Inc., and SeniorBridge Family Companies (CT), Inc. ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... On November 25, 2015, officials of ... network, announced the release of a new cutting edge recovery program that has been ... working with drug- and alcohol-addicted individuals with the purpose to free addicts from the ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... certified facial plastic surgeon specializing in both surgical and non-surgical treatments, announced the ... Spa at Hobgood Facial Plastic Surgery. , Highly trained and nationally recognized ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... ... Today, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) learned that the number of ... time since 2011. In 2014, there were 9,967 fatalities involving an alcohol impaired driver, ... Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 32,675 people were killed in traffic crashes in 2014. Drunk ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... DUBLIN , Nov. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... announced the addition of the "Global ... to their offering. --> ... "Global Brain Monitoring Devices Market 2015-2019" ... Research and Markets ( ) ...
(Date:11/25/2015)...  Linden Care, LLC, a retail specialty pharmacy focused ... suffering from chronic pain, said today that it is ... (TRO) enjoining Express Scripts from unilaterally terminating the Pharmacy ... --> --> The company said that ... --> --> In ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Nov. 25, 2015  Henry Schein, Inc., the world,s ... office-based dental, medical and animal health practitioners, will unveil ... Henry Schein ConnectDental® Pavilion , which brings together ... open solutions designed to help any practice or laboratory ... for a schedule of experts appearing at the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: