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Testosterone Therapy Increases Heart Attack Risk in Older Men

New Study Shows Testosterone Therapy Increases Heart Attack Risk Twofold in Men Under 65

heart attackThe latest testosterone therapy study, published recently in PLoS One shows that testosterone replacement drugs increase the risks of heart attack, stroke, and or death in men 65 years of age or older.

Testosterone therapy is often marketed to middle aged and older men as a way of improving sex drive and increasing energy. However, several studies recently have shown that testosterone therapy may not be as effective as suggested, and the side effects can be deadly.

This latest study was conducted by a research team that included experts from Consolidated Research, the US National Cancer Institute, and the University of California, Los Angeles.

Approximately 2.9% of men in the United States over the age of 40 are taking prescription testosterone to treat everything from lack of energy to weight gain to sexual performance. That percentage represents a five-fold increase from the drugs’ first direct-to-consumer marketing campaigns, which began in 2000.  However, in 2010, a clinical trial studying the effects of testosterone therapy in frail older men was ended early because of the serious increase in heart attacks and strokes in the group receiving the testosterone supplements.

A JAMA study, published earlier in January, showed that the 14% of men taking testosterone therapy supplements after undergoing angiography generally appeared slightly healthier and younger than the 86% of men involved in the study who did not receive testosterone therapy. While this can support short-term benefits for the drugs, when the men were followed for three years, those who took testosterone supplements were 30% more likely to have an ischemic stroke, heart attack, or die of other causes, than the control group. In that three year period, 25.7% of men taking the supplement had a heart attack or stroke; in the control group not taking testosterone therapy drugs, only 19.9% suffered these outcomes.

The latest study, headed by William Finkle, CEO of Consolidated Research, said his study was the first to follow men younger than 65 who were taking testosterone supplements. The study followed 56,000 men – 48,000 of whom were under 65 – for 90 days while they underwent testosterone therapy.

The study concluded that the risk of heart attack for men over 65 years of age doubled in the short 3-month time span after they began testosterone therapy, as well as for the men under 65 years old who had a history of heart disease.

“We don’t have enough evidence to say testosterone supplements in men under age 65 without heart disease are safe,” Finkle said.

The study did not examine the reasons for increased risk of heart attack in these two groups, but Finkle added, “The theory is that testosterone [in the blood] most likely promotes clotting.”

The Strom Law Firm Can Help with Dangerous Drug Cases, Including Testosterone Therapy and Supplements

The Strom Law Firm, L.L.C. is a leader in the consumer protection battle against dangerous prescription drugs and medical devices, from Actos to testosterone therapy. We represent individuals who have been killed or injured by dangerous or defective pharmaceuticals. If you or a family member have been injured or killed after using a dangerous drugs or medical products such as testosterone therapy or supplements, contact our dangerous drug lawyers as soon as possible so that we can begin taking steps to preserve evidence and your claim immediately. We offer free consultations to discuss the facts of your case. 803.252.4800



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