But, the male hormone therapy may cause unwanted hair growth, study finds,,
WEDNESDAY, Nov. 5 (HealthDay News) -- There aren't a lot of treatment options for older women with flagging libidos, but a new study suggests that a testosterone patch may significantly improve the number of satisfying sexual episodes that women experience.
However, the increased sexual satisfaction doesn't come without side effects, such as unwanted hair. Of more concern is a possible increase in the risk of breast cancer in women taking the male hormone, although the study's authors think this finding was probably a chance occurrence.
"This is the first study to show that when used alone, testosterone administered by a skin patch significantly improves sexual well-being in postmenopausal women," said the study's lead author, Dr. Susan R. Davis, a professor of women's health at Monash University in Australia.
Results of the study were published in the Nov. 6 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. The study was funded with research grants from Procter & Gamble Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of the testosterone patch, Intrinsa.
The testosterone patch is available in Europe to treat a loss of sexual desire in women, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration turned down the manufacturer's request for approval in December 2004, citing a lack of long-term safety data, the study authors said.
The new study ran for 52 weeks -- 24 weeks were designed to test effectiveness, and the entire study period was designed to assess safety.
Just over 800 postmenopausal women who weren't taking estrogen therapy were included in the study. All of the women reported low sexual desire. The women were randomly assigned to one of three groups: treatment with a patch that delivered 300 micrograms of testosterone daily, treatment with a patch that delivered 150 micrograms of testosterone daily, or a placebo pa
All rights reserved