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Clin Geriatr Med. 2010 May;26(2):197-222. doi: 10.1016/j.cger.2010.02.003.

Late-life onset hypogonadism: a review.

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Division of Geriatric Psychiatry, Department of Neurology and Psychiatry, Saint Louis University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO 63104, USA.


Increased longevity and population aging will increase the number of men with late-onset hypogonadism, a common condition that is often under diagnosed and under treated. The indication of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) treatment requires the presence of low testosterone level and symptoms and signs of hypogonadism. Although there is a lack of large-scale, long-term studies assessing the benefits and risks of TRT in men with hypogonadism, reports indicate that TRT may produce a wide range of benefits that include improvement in libido and sexual function, bone density, muscle mass, body composition, mood, erythropoiesis, cognition, quality of life, and cardiovascular disease. Perhaps the most controversial area is the issue of risk, especially the possible stimulation of prostate cancer by testosterone, even though there is no evidence to support this risk. Other possible risks include worsening symptoms of benign prostatic hypertrophy, liver toxicity, hyperviscosity, erythrocytosis, worsening untreated sleep apnea, or severe heart failure. Despite this controversy, testosterone supplementation in the United States has increased substantially in the past several years. The physician should discuss with the patient the potential benefits and risks of TRT. This review discusses the benefits and risks of TRT.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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