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Aging Male. 2004 Sep;7(3):188-96.

Hormone profiles, body mass index and aging male symptoms: results of the Androx Vienna Municipality study.

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  • 1University of Vienna Medical School, Vienna, Austria.


Aging in the male is accompanied by steroid hormonal decline, and men may develop symptoms associated with hypogonadism. Increased awareness of 'andropause' in recent years has led to greater demand for hormonal assessments, resulting in a rising burden for health economics. We conducted a cross-sectional study to define men at risk for hypogonadism, in whom further hormonal investigation should be performed. We examined 664 blue-collar workers aged 40-60 years at their workplace and determined hormonal status and body mass index (BMI). Men with an abnormal urogenital status and those on medication that might affect endocrine status were excluded from the study. All participants completed the validated Aging Male Symptom (AMS) questionnaire and obtained scores for psychological symptoms, somatovegetative symptoms, and sexual symptoms. Multiple logistic regression analyses revealed a significantly increased risk (represented by the odds ratio) of psychological symptoms for men with low levels of testosterone and/or bioavailable testosterone (BAT). Increased BMI as well as low testosterone levels and/or low BAT levels raised the risk of somatovegetative symptoms. Each decrease of BAT by 1 ng/ml caused an approximately 1.8-fold increase of the risk (odds ratio = 1.832, p = 0.005). Additional independent risk factors were increased age and low luteinizing hormone (LH) level. Men aged 55 years with BMI > 28 kg/m2 and with somatovegetative symptoms and moderate or severe psychological symptoms had a 7.2-fold increase in the risk of a BAT level < 1.5 ng/ml compared to men without these risk factors (p < 0.001). Sensitivity and specificity were 75% and 71%, respectively. The AMS score combined with age and BMI provides an easy and convenient method to identify men with probable androgen deficiency who require hormonal assessment.

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