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Is low testosterone linked to heart disease?

ANSWER

Testosterone has mixed effects on the arteries. Many experts believe testosterone contributes to the higher rates of heart disease and high blood pressure that tend to affect men at younger ages. By this reasoning, high testosterone might be bad for the heart.

But testosterone deficiency is connected to insulin resistance, obesity, and diabetes. Each of these problems increases cardiovascular risk. Men with diabetes and low testosterone also have higher rates of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries.

SOURCES:

Mulligan, T. International Journal of Clinical Practice, 2006; vol 60: pp 762-769.

WebMD Health News: "Low Testosterone Tied to Poor Health."

Karen Herbst, MD, PhD, assistant professor in medicine, University of California, San Diego.

Medscape: "Low Testosterone Levels Linked With Higher Risk for Depression."

WebMD Medical Reference: "Atherosclerosis and Erectile Dysfunction."

Grossmann, M. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2008; vol 93: pp 1834-40.

Kapoor, D. Drugs & Aging, 2008; vol 25: pp 357-69.

Kupelian, V. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2006; vol 91: pp 843-50.

Spark, R. Current Urology Reports, 2007; vol 8: pp 467-471.

Fukui, M. Current Diabetes Reviews, 2007; vol 3: pp 25-31.

Fukui, M. Diabetes Care, 2003; vol 26: pp 1869-1873.

Bhasin, S. Diabetes Care, 2003; vol 26: pp 1929-1931.

Grundy, S. Circulation, 2004; vol 109: pp 433-438.

Bhasin, S. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, 2006; vol 91: pp 1995-2010.

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on February 11, 2019

SOURCES:

Mulligan, T. International Journal of Clinical Practice, 2006; vol 60: pp 762-769.

WebMD Health News: "Low Testosterone Tied to Poor Health."

Karen Herbst, MD, PhD, assistant professor in medicine, University of California, San Diego.

Medscape: "Low Testosterone Levels Linked With Higher Risk for Depression."

WebMD Medical Reference: "Atherosclerosis and Erectile Dysfunction."

Grossmann, M. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2008; vol 93: pp 1834-40.

Kapoor, D. Drugs & Aging, 2008; vol 25: pp 357-69.

Kupelian, V. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2006; vol 91: pp 843-50.

Spark, R. Current Urology Reports, 2007; vol 8: pp 467-471.

Fukui, M. Current Diabetes Reviews, 2007; vol 3: pp 25-31.

Fukui, M. Diabetes Care, 2003; vol 26: pp 1869-1873.

Bhasin, S. Diabetes Care, 2003; vol 26: pp 1929-1931.

Grundy, S. Circulation, 2004; vol 109: pp 433-438.

Bhasin, S. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, 2006; vol 91: pp 1995-2010.

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on February 11, 2019

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How does testosterone affect sex drive?

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