Low Testosterone Ups Early Death Risk

SHEFFIELD, England, Oct. 22 (UPI) — British researchers link low testosterone levels in younger men to a higher risk of premature death from heart disease.

Chris Malkin of Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield, England, and colleagues say their finding refutes conventional wisdom that testosterone is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

The study, published in the journal Heart, found twice as many men with low testosterone died as did those with normal levels. One in five of those with low testosterone died, compared with one in eight of those with normal levels during the monitoring period.

The researchers base their findings on 930 men, all of whom had coronary artery heart disease and had been referred to a specialist heart center between 2000 and 2002. Their heart health was then tracked for around seven years.

Testosterone deficiency was defined by either a level of bioavailable testosterone — available for tissues to use — of under 2.6 millimoles per liter or a level of total testosterone of under 8.1 millimoles per liter. These measures showed testosterone deficiency — referred to as hypogonadism — as opposed to lowering levels of the hormone as a result of aging.

One in four of the men was classified as having low testosterone using these measurements.

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