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Health Q&A: Testosterone treatments linked with heart risks
Naomi Creason/City Editor/The Sentinel Newspaper
New research shows the widely used testosterone treatments may greatly increase the risks for heart attacks, strokes and death, according to the Associated Press.
The Associated Press reported last week that the study of 8,700 veterans nationwide shows men who used the gel, patch or injection products were 30 percent more likely to have a heart attack or stroke, or to die during a three-year period than men with low hormone levels who did not take the treatments.
On average, the veterans in the study were in their early 60s and most had other health problems, such as high blood pressure, unhealthy cholesterol and diabetes. In the same test, only 20 percent of nonusers had either a heart attack or stroke, or died in that three-year period of time.
Boiling Springs Family Medicine physician Dr. Chad Jumper talked about what the testosterone treatments were and what dangers they pose.
Q: For what are testosterone treatments used?
A: “This form of treatment is primarily used to reverse low levels of testosterone in men. Symptoms of low testosterone can include fatigue, depressed mood and low sex drive.”
Q: How are the treatments usually administered?
A: “Testosterone replacement is administered via topical gels or injections.”
Q: What are the benefits of such treatment?
A: “Benefits include improved mood, sex drive, erectile function and energy levels.”
Q: What are the risks to women and children?
A: “Women and children should not come in contact with testosterone due to potential hormonal effects this exposure could cause.”
Q: What should people be aware of before they decide to use such treatments?
A: “As with any decision in medicine, patients should weigh the risks and the benefits. In this case, patients who have or who are at risk of having cardiovascular disease (heart attacks and strokes) may want to avoid testosterone replacement due to the potential risks. I anticipate more research will aid in this decision process moving forward.”
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Tags: Fort Worth Weight Loss, Keller weight loss, weight loss, medical weight loss, low-t, low testosterone