Another pharma-funded testosterone therapy study has been published, this time in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The authors, two of whom worked with or profited from big-name testosterone therapy manufacturers, found that men who took testosterone did not show any significant difference in risk of atherosclerosis; at the same time, the study also revealed these men experienced no sexual or health-related improvement in quality of life. As noted by the researchers, the new study was not powered to address other cardiovascular side effects testosterone therapy is suspected to cause—only atherosclerosis was evaluated.
While popularly considered an effective anti-aging solution, testosterone therapy is in truth far less spectacular. As set forth by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), testosterone therapy is only approved for use in men with medically deficient testosterone, or hypogonadism. The benefit and safety of these medications have not been established for the treatment of low testosterone levels due to aging, according to the FDA. The agency requested testosterone therapy manufacturers change their products’ labels to reflect the approved uses of testosterone.
The AMA study confirms this view. More and more patients are discovering that testosterone therapy does not appear to provide the promised benefits.
Research also suggests that testosterone may pose cardiovascular risks, even when properly used. A 2013 study (also published in the Journal of the American Medical Association) linked testosterone use in older males to increased rates of cardiovascular complications. Out of the 8,709 men observed, incidence of heart attack, stroke, and death was 29 percent higher in those who had received testosterone therapy.
Another study in 2014 analyzed the risk of myocardial infarction in over 55,000 testosterone patients and found a significant increase in the rate of myocardial infarction in men who received testosterone therapy—especially those 65 years and older.
Despite its shortcomings and potential health risks, testosterone therapy remains a thriving business in the United States, with companies like AbbVie and Eli Lilly & Co. sharing more than $2 billion in sales annually. But some critics argue the testosterone industry is a deceptive one, going as far as to accuse “Low-T” drug manufacturers of “disease mongering”. Recent research has indicated a tenfold increase in the number of testosterone prescriptions in the United States, and a large portion of these prescriptions are believed to have been given to men in whom testosterone therapy is not approved.
In response to evidence of cardiovascular health risks, men who used testosterone therapy products began filing testosterone therapy lawsuits. These testosterone lawsuits quickly piled up, and in June 2014 were centralized in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. This testosterone multidistrict litigation now includes over 2,250 testosterone therapy lawsuits filed by men who believe companies like AbbVie and Eli Lilly released their products without adequate evaluation of potential health risks.
Check with your doctor if you have any concerns about your current treatment plan. If you or someone close suffered a cardiovascular injury after using testosterone therapy, contact Lopez McHugh today to speak free of charge with a qualified testosterone lawyer. You may be eligible to receive compensation through a testosterone therapy lawsuit.