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15 May 2016

Survival and cardiovascular events in men treated with testosterone

Survival and cardiovascular events in men treated with testosterone

Survival and cardiovascular events in men treated with testosterone replacement therapy: an intention-to-treat observational cohort study. Wallis CJD, Lo K, Lee Y, et al. The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology. 2016;May 7

On the surface, testosterone therapy is a controversial treatment because previous studies investigating the effects of testosterone therapy have been conflicting, with some studies showing supposed harm and others showing significant benefit.

Here we present the results of a new study published in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology on May 7 2016, which addressed some shortcomings in previous studies by analyzing effects based on duration of testosterone treatment.



Key Points

  • After a follow-up for over 5 years, men treated with testosterone had 12% lower mortality than non-testosterone treated men.
  • Compared to non-testosterone treated men, men with the shortest duration of testosterone treatment had 11% increased risk of mortality and 26% increased risk cardiovascular events. In contrast, those with the longest duration of testosterone treatment had 33% decreased risk of mortality and 16% decreased risk of cardiovascular events.
  • Risk of prostate cancer diagnosis was decreased by 40% in men with the longest duration of testosterone treatment, compared to non-testosterone treated men. No effect on prostate cancer risk was seen among men with shortest duration of testosterone treatment.
  • It is speculated that the increased risk of cardiovascular events and mortality for men with the shortest duration of testosterone treatment could be driven by the consequences of underlying testosterone deficiency and inadequate treatment, rather than the testosterone treatment.

Last updated: 2019
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