"Low Testosterone, Early Death?
Higher Death Risk in Men With Lower Testosterone Levels
By Daniel J. DeNoon
WebMD Medical NewsReviewed by Louise Chang, MDNov. 27, 2007 -- The lower a man's testosterone level, the higher his risk of death -- especially death from heart disease.
The finding comes from a study of British men aged 40 to 79 by University of Cambridge gerontologist Kay-Tee Khaw, MBBCh, and colleagues.
"The men with lower testosterone levels had an increased risk of dying from any cause, but most particularly of cardiovascular disease," Khaw tells WebMD. "We looked at cancer, too, and found no evidence of a link to cancer with higher testosterone levels."
Nearly 12,000 men enrolled in the long-term study from 1993 to 1997. More than 800 of the men died by 2003; Khaw compared these men's testosterone levels to those of some 1,500 living study participants.
After adjusting for factors that might affect risk of death -- including age, weight, smoking, alcohol use, high blood pressure, diabetes, physical activity, education, and social class -- the link between low testosterone and earlier death remained.