Warning over risks associated with testosterone replacement therapy

Recommended by Dr. Michael White, Updated on October 25th, 2018


Advertisements praising the benefits of testosterone replacement therapy are all over the radio and in newspapers, and those ads are driving men to doctor's offices all over Houston.

Miguel Orejuela, 29, was looking for a way to beef up and build strength.

"I heard rumors, 'Try testosterone, it's going to help you gain weight, it's going to help you do this, OK, just try one cycle. You'll see at least 10 pounds of muscle,'" Orejuela said.

But there are risks associated with testosterone replacement, especially in younger men.

Urologist Dr. Eliecer Kurzer said he's seeing plenty of patients coming in for evaluations, seeking the fountain of youth in the form of a drug or cream.

"We have no studies to show what's going to happen to them 20-30 years down the road," Kurzer said. "The other thing for the young guy when you take testosterone and you don't need it, your body's own supplies will be suppressed and it will stop working."

That in turn can lead to sterility or other side effects, including early onset hair loss, acne, the development of male breasts as estrogen becomes dominant and the potential for prostate cancer.

"Because there's so much doubt and controversy we have to be very selective about who we give it to," Kurzer added.

When Orejuela saw no benefit, he stopped taking the hormones and focused on achieving the results he was looking for through hard work at the gym.

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Warning over risks associated with testosterone replacement therapy

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