Posted on Oct 22, 2015, 6 a.m.
3-year long study reports that testosterone replacement therapy “did not result in a significant difference in the rates of change” in markers of atherosclerosis.
Testosterone is not only the primary male reproductive hormone, but is key for muscle growth and bone mass. Shalender Bhasin, from Brigham and Women's Hospital (Massachusetts, USA), and colleagues completed the Testosterone's Effects on Atherosclerosis Progression in Aging Men (TEAAM) trial – a 3-year long, double-blind study of testosterone replacement therapy, in 308 men, ages 60 years and older, with low or low-normal testosterone levels. Each subject received either 7.5 g of 1% testosterone; pr placebo gel packets daily (dose was adjusted to achieve testosterone levels between 500 and 900 ng/dL), for 3 years. The researchers tracked two indicators of atherosclerosis: calcium deposits in the arteries of the heart (coronary artery calcification) and the thickness of inner lining of the carotid arteries that supply blood to the brain (common carotid artery intima-media thickness). As well, the team measured secondary outcomes of sexual function and health-related quality of life. The study authors report that: “Among older men with low or low-normal testosterone levels, testosterone administration for 3 years vs placebo did not result in a significant difference in the rates of change in either common carotid artery intima-media thickness or coronary artery calcium.”
Basaria S, Harman SM, Travison TG, Hodis H, Tsitouras P, Budoff M, Pencina KM, Vita J, Dzekov C, Mazer NA, Coviello AD, Knapp PE, Hally K, Pinjic E, Yan M, Storer TW, Bhasin S. “Effects of Testosterone Administration for 3 Years on Subclinical Atherosclerosis Progression in Older Men With Low or Low-Normal Testosterone Levels: A Randomized Clinical Trial.” JAMA. 2015 Aug 11;314(6):570-81