May 28, 2014

A Georgetown associate professor of pharmacology recently warned of the health dangers potentially associated with low-T testosterone replacement therapy products like AndroGel, Axiron, and Testim. At the American Urological Association’s annual meeting recently held in Orlando, Dr. Adriane Fugh-Berman said advertisers are attempting to turn aging “into a disease with very vague, non-specific symptoms that closely overlap with aging.”

“There is no evidence of benefits for testosterone and plenty of evidence of harm and cardiovascular risk,” Dr. Fugh-Berman said. “Advertisers and some doctors say wonderful things about what testosterone does, but we’ve had some studies that show there is cardiovascular risk associated with it, and that is being ignored for whatever reason.”

She compared the push to sell low-T testosterone products to men is similar to the marketing of estrogen treatments for women. Studies during the 1970s linked estrogen treatments with serious health problems, but the treatments soared in popularity until 2000, when a new study linked estrogen treatments with breast cancer and cardiovascular problems.

Two other doctors – Dr. Alvin Matsumoto of University of Washington School of Medicine and Dr. Ajay Nangia of the University of Kansas Medical Center – also made presentations alleging that testosterone treatments such as Axiron, AndroGel, and Testim could be dangerous for men. Dr. Nangia stated that the guidelines for prescribing testosterone products are too broad and that there are too many signs and symptoms that can be attributed to low testosterone. Dr. Matsumoto criticized the practice of giving patients low-T prescriptions after only one testosterone test.

“There are clinics now that prescribe testosterone treatment after getting one reading, and I would argue that is not a good decision,” Dr. Matsumoto said.

Last fall, Dr. Fugh-Berman wrote a column in the Chicago Tribune stating that testosterone drugs are “associated with more heart attacks, blood clots and anemia, worsening heart failure, and increased prostate cancer risk.” She observed that studies funded by pharmaceutical companies seek to minimize these adverse health events.

Attorneys with The Cochran Firm, D.C. are actively investigating legal claims associated with low-T products like Axiron, AndroGel, and Testim. If you took a testosterone replacement therapy product and suffered heart problems, please contact us to receive a free confidential case review.