The latest guidelines on the use of testosterone supplements provided by the American College of Physicians (ACP) state that these supplements can help males regarding sexual issues. But aside from this health benefit, they can also lead to some problems like decreased energy.
Experts have analyzed the findings of 58 studies in order to assess the effects (positive or negative) of testosterone treatments on healthy males. These studies also include thirty-eight randomized clinical trials (RCTs) with a duration of almost six months.
During their analysis, the research team has only observed the low testosterone levels associated with age, not those related to hypogonadism. The team’s finding has been reported in the journal “Annals of Internal Medicine”.
The results show that in aged men with low testosterone levels, its administration may result in improvements in sexual function. But the benefits of this testosterone supplementation are little to none when its effects are checked concerning feelings of vitality, energy levels, physical functioning, thinking skills, and the likelihood of being depressed.
In the previous twenty years, there has been an increase in the proportion of men who use testosterone supplements for the purpose of improving their energy levels, mobility, and sexual function.
In the U.S., the amount spent on these supplements was 70 million dollars in the year 2000, which increased to almost 2.8 billion dollars in 2013. What’s more troublesome is that most of the men don’t get their levels of testosterone measured before starting such treatment.
In a study, among the men who got their testosterone levels examined before starting the hormone therapy, in 20 percent of the individuals, levels were above the normal threshold of 270 ng/dL. This suggests that low levels of testosterone hormone may not be the cause of their problem.
And using hormone therapy may be a total waste of money. The research team has cited the claims mentioned in the Medicare Part D Drug Claims database 2016 and revealed that the annual cost of transdermal testosterone replacement therapy was 2,135.32 dollars per person.
Whereas, the expense for IM formulation of testosterone was 156.24 dollars. According to the ACP President, Dr. Robert McLean, the experts questioned the health benefits of testosterone replacement treatments as they were always discussed in the organization’s Clinical Guideline Committee.
Additionally, he said the analysis of all these studies show that testosterone use may improve sexual function to some point. But still, there isn’t much proof available that indicates the beneficial effect of testosterone prescription on other symptoms.
In the age of social media and the internet, there’s a large amount of data available online, which makes it quite troublesome to find the information provided by authentic sources. It is so difficult to differentiate between the scientifically proven and groundless claims.
McClean further added that conflicts and biases in interest could be found everywhere. It’s on the physicians and patients to find authentic and useful information and make conclusions about validity after looking at the primary financial support.
Depending on the internet source while making decisions about health is too risky and should never be recommended.