A recent study shows that testosterone therapy helps cardiovascular health. The study revealed that the levels of testosterone have a connection with heart failure risks.
The study shows that restoring the normal levels of testosterone in men who are older, through the use of patches, injections or gels may lower the risks of strokes, heart attacks or deaths from other causes in these men. The study also discovered that men who were treated but haven’t reached normal levels of testosterone did not get the same benefits as those men whose levels reached normal.
Rajat Barua, an assistant professor of medicine from the University of Kansas and corresponding author of the study said that this is the first study that demonstrates that significant benefits are seen only in the dose is appropriate enough to normalize the levels of testosterone in the body. People who failed to reach normal levels of testosterone after therapy did not see the same reduction in strokes or heart attacks and had considerably less benefit regarding mortality.
The recent discoveries may shake a bit the debate over the benefits and risks of testosterone therapy, particularly for the heart. As of now, there are no real results from a clinical trial in the medical community that may provide a clear guidance.
In the meantime, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration released guidance in 2015 informing clinicians about the risks of over-using the testosterone therapy, saying that it may lead to an increased risk of strokes and heart attacks.
The recent study analyzed the data from over 83,000 men with low testosterone, all above the age of 50, who received treatment between the years 1999 and 2014. The scientists split the men into three groups: the people who were treated until their levels of testosterone returned to normal, the people who were treated but whose levels did not reach normal and the people who were not treated at all and stayed at low levels.
The most obvious difference was seen between the men who were treated and reached normal levels and those who were untreated. The men who were treated were found to be 56 percent less likely to die in the follow-up period, 36 percent less likely to suffer from a stroke and 24 percent less likely to have a heart attack.
However, there are no apparent reasons as to why testosterone is beneficial for the heart and the overall survival. The researchers noted that some possible explanations could involve inflammation, blood platelets, lipids, insulin sensitivity, body fat or some other biological factors.
The recent study was published in the European Heart Journal online.
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