Testosterone Replacement in Older Men and Atherosclerosis Progression
As men grow older, their testosterone levels decrease with age. One-third of men, 70 years of age or older, have low testosterone levels. It is known that short-term testosterone replacement is safe, and can increase muscle strength and physical function, but the risks of long-term testosterone replacement in older men with low testosterone levels are incompletely understood.
Atherosclerosis is characterized by thickening of the artery walls, and the narrowing of the blood vessels as cholesterol is deposited in the lining of the arteries. It is the major cause of cardiovascular disease including ischemic heart disease (heart attacks) and stroke. Although, historically, there has been a widespread perception that higher levels of testosterone might increase the risk of atherosclerosis, the evidence from research does not support this. In observational studies, higher testosterone levels have been correlated with more favorable cardiovascular risk factors, and supplementation with testosterone to bring older men into the normal range for healthy younger men appears to improve several cardiovascular risk factors, and may slow the progression of atherosclerosis.
The primary purpose of this study is to look at the effects of testosterone replacement on the progression of atherosclerosis in older men. This study is also being done to find out whether replacement with testosterone in older men with low testosterone levels improves their health-related quality of life.
|Date last updated at source||2012-03-06|
|Study start date||2003-03-01|
|Estimated primary completion date||2012-06-01|