A study has shown that serum testosterone concentration in men may have links to fitness and health levels that can serve as an indicator of general health. These studies are exploring how testosterone content may affect all-cause mortality in older men and what it may mean for men as they age.
Testosterone (T) is a hormone produced by males in the testicles after a communication pathway called the HPA axis from the hypothalamus to the pituitary gland through the adrenals and to the gonads. While it is also present by women, it is produced in much higher concentrations in men. It is responsible for maintaining energy, bone density, muscles mass, sperm production and sex drive, along with other traits, and is associated with maintaining many of the characteristics associated with men.
The level of T concentration in men peaks and declines at given points in their lifetime. In general, serum T concentration is highest in adolescence and young adulthood, when it is at its peak. However, as men age, its levels commonly undergo a steady decline. Men peak at age and experience a range of one to two percent decline in their concentration.
Scientists have been exploring possible links of testosterone as an indicator of men’s health conditions, studying the correlation of low T with general health and mortality.
One study has discovered that while a decline in men’s T levels of one to two percent is considered normal, a sudden and immediate drop in testosterone concentration may be associated with an increased probability of mortality. Based on observations, a low level of serum testosterone concentration in men is seen as associated with risk factors such as diabetes and cardiovascular problems. However, while these conditions may be associated with illnesses and premature death, the FDA is not saying they see a direct causational effect between decreasing testosterone and longevity.
Currently, available studies tackling the topic have produced mixed results. In one study researching a sample of 794 men, it was concluded that men whose testosterone levels were in the lowest quartile of test subjects were at a 40% greater risk of mortality in comparison to those men who had higher levels. A 15 year study of US military veterans also showed that men with low T levels, treated under physician guidance and supplemented back to normal levels above 500, had lower incidence of heart attack, stroke, prostate cancer and death.
In an effort to consolidate all the data and results from these previous researches, a newer study examined multiple works from 1966 to 2010 in order to gain a clearer and more definitive understanding of testosterone levels and mortality. In addition to testosterone levels, it also took into account lifestyle factors, age and other characteristics that may affect results.
Ultimately, the research concluded that a decline in total testosterone was linked with cardiovascular mortality by 25% and with higher susceptibility to general, all-cause mortality by 35%.
The study did note that other factors may influence the relative risk that was determined in the study. Among these, researchers noted the age of the population studied, the total testosterone level and the amount of years the patient followed up as possible sources of differences within the study. The study also observed the most susceptible demographics for larger relative risks. These included patients with lower levels of testosterone, older men and patients who followed up for a smaller amount of years.
As a conclusion, the data gathered from this research establishes low T as a possible basis or indicator of general health in men. However, while it may be seen as a marker of higher susceptibility to all-cause mortality, it is not strictly a direct source of it. Overall, there remains much to be learned about the two.
Aside from being and indicator of one’s general well-being, testosterone levels and hormone balance are traits that can greatly affect one’s quality of life. As men age, it becomes important to monitor these factors in order to gain a better idea of one’s health and fitness.
Hormone Therapeutics specializes in assisting people with endocrine-related concerns in order to help them monitor and regulate the level of hormones in their bodies. If you have any inquiries regarding your testosterone level and what it means for you, Hormone Therapeutics can help you jumpstart your life and provide you with the answers you need.
Saleamp Design April 12th, 2016
Posted In: Testosterone Therapy
Tags: adrenals, bone density, cardiovascular, energy, health, hormone replacement therapy, HPA axis, hypothalamus, low t, low testosterone, mortality, muscles mass, pituitary glands, sex drive, sperm, testosterone, testosterone therapy