Testosterone replacement therapy can carry health risks – CBS News

Recommended by Dr. Michael White, Updated on January 5th, 2018

(CBS News) When restaurant owner Luca Marcato started feeling tired, he asked his doctor to check his testosterone level.

"I did not have energy right in the morning. You know in my business, you have to go and go and go," Marcato said.

Restaurant owner Luca Marcato says he regained a lot of energy after he started taking testosterone replacement.

CBS News

His levels were low and his doctor prescribed a gel containing testosterone.

"Now I feel the way I should be feeling," he said.

Low testosterone levels are linked to problems like fatigue, muscle and bone loss and decreased libido.

While testosterone replacement therapy is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for some conditions, it's widely marketed as a way to improve health and stay young. But there's little data on its long-term effects.

A major study published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association looked at older men, most with heart disease, in the Veterans Affairs system who had low testosterone levels. There was a 29 percent increased risk of heart attack, stroke or death in those given testosterone.

Dr. Steve Nissen of the Cleveland Clinic says it may be a bad idea to treat low testosterone levels in older men like a disease.

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Testosterone replacement therapy can carry health risks - CBS News

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