• Testosterone for Men: Is it Big Business or Preventive Care?

    by Dr. Susan Sklar
    on Sep 9th, 2014

Testosterone is in the news again with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) publishing information on its website in preparation for its panel of outside experts to decide on labeling for testosterone prescriptions.

Testosterone is big business with “Low T” clinics popping up across the country.  Roughly 2.3 million U.S. patients received a prescription for testosterone last year, up 77 percent from 2010, according to FDA figures.

The FDA cites both studies of testosterone cardiovascular risks along with studies of improved longevity with testosterone use.  Which is correct?

There is an abundance of scientific literature about the benefits of testosterone for healthy longevity. Increased muscle, less body fat, and improved bone density are some of the proven benefits for men.  Improvements in sexual function and moods have also been shown in scientific studies of testosterone replacement therapy.  There are also some studies that do not show these benefits.  It certainly is a complicated subject.

However, while the medical community is debating hormones yes or no, the population is aging and does not have a good medical strategy for maintaining good health while aging.  The medical system is set up to wait until you get sick and then prescribe a medication to patch it up after the fact.  It’s closing the barn door after the cow got away.

On the other hand, there are low T clinics making a financial killing on prescribing testosterone therapy.

What’s the right way?  Is there a solution?

Yes, there is.  The FDA noted that more than 20 percent of patients who received a prescription did not have any record that their testosterone levels were measured.  The studies that showed risks with testosterone use did not monitor their patients for testosterone levels during treatment.  They did not look at how the testosterone got broken down in the body and the possible risks from incorrect metabolism.

Testosterone should be prescribed based on lab testing levels. Its use should be monitored with follow up lab tests for testosterone levels.  It should be used within a program for healthy longevity.  That means dietary, exercise and supplement recommendations based upon the individuals health assessment and goals.

There is plenty that you can do to age successfully and have healthy longevity.  A program for improving your lifestyle habits while restoring your hormones is the safest and most effective way to do it.

Author Dr. Susan Sklar

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