June 6, 2012

Testosterone Replacement Therapy Reduces Metabolic Syndrome, Related Issues

Atlanta, GAThe number of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) prescriptions has soared in the last 2 decades. Some new research suggests the ways in which men are benefitting from TRT, apart from the sexual performance issues that often prompt treatment.

A long-term study presented recently at the American Urological Association (AUA) meeting here finds that metabolic syndrome—defined as central obesity plus any two of elevated triglycerides, reduced HDL cholesterol, elevated blood pressure or elevated fasting plasma glucose—decreased by almost 50% among 261 men who received long-acting intramuscular testosterone undecanoate. Study participants were injected with 1,000 mg on Day 1, then again in 6 weeks and every 3 months thereafter for the 4.25-year study. Metabolic syndrome decreased from 56% to 30%, report the authors from Maimonides Medical Center in New York City.

Much of the benefit could be attributed to weight loss, although lipids and glucose control also showed improvement, the authors note.

Available in intramuscular, patch, and gel formulations, use of TRT has increased substantially in the United States over the last 2 decades. A 2009 study noted that there had been a more than 500% increase in prescription sales of testosterone products since 1993.

Two other studies from Maimonides were presented at the AUA meeting, with subjects following the same intramuscular TRT regimen as the men in the first study.

One involved a study of 64 diabetic men with late-onset hypogonadism (LOH). With TRT, their mean glucose value decreased from 150.1 to 95.4 mg/dL, and the mean HbA1c dropped from 8.5% to 5.9%. Again, weight loss associated with TRT appears to have the strongest effect.

In the third study, Maimonides researchers looked at the effect of TRT on lower urinary tract symptoms. The study, which included 130 men with LOH and erectile dysfunction, shows that the International Prostate Symptom Score decreased steadily over time as testosterone levels rose.

U.S. Pharmacist Social Connect