Low testosterone is a problem for about 15 million American men, most of whom remain undiagnosed and untreated. Besides being a part of the aging process, the levels of testosterone can decrease from many reasons including injuries, infections and cancer of the testicles, genetic abnormalities (particularly Klinefelter’s Syndrome), various medications such as chemotherapy drugs, certain endocrine and metabolic disorders, liver and kidney diseases, chronic illnesses, alcoholism and obesity. In some cases, the root cause of the low testosterone level is not exactly known. What is well recognized now is that this issue had been increasingly found in adult men and as a result there are a several methods to replace and correct testosterone deficiency. This testosterone deficiency has to be corrected, because the low testosterone dangers to health are significant.
Increased risk of obesity
A study featured online in the 2012 in the Journal Diabetes Care from the University at Buffalo, indicates that 40 % of obese men involved in the study had lower than normal testosterone levels, and the percentage increased to 50 percent among obese men with diabetes. These findings have a serious impact, considering that one in three Americans are obese.
Increased risk of diabetes
Men with low levels of testosterone could be at greater risk of developing diabetes, according to a 2012 study conducted by researchers from the University of Edinburgh. They found low testosterone levels are linked to a resistance to insulin, the hormone that controls blood sugar levels.
Testosterone is present throughout the body and low levels are well known to be linked with increased obesity and obesity plays a key role in the development of type 2 diabetes. However, this study indicates that testosterone directly increases the risk of diabetes, even if the body mass is not affected.
Increased risk of osteoporosis
Testosterone is a key factor in regenerating bone, thus men with low testosterone will be at risk of having weaker bones. Some studies indicates that men between the ages of 40 to 70 years, have decreases in bone density by up to 15%. Therefore, low levels of testosterone increase osteoporosis risk. This results in an increased risk of falls and hip fractures as well.
Low testosterone and heart diseases
A low testosterone level is also a risk marker for heart disease in men. In fact, studies are suggesting now that low testosterone levels predict worse outcomes in men who already have heart disease. Researchers also noted that free testosterone measurements are a better measure of heart risk than are total testosterone measurements. Also it has been suggested that the link between heart diseases and low testosterone apply to men only.
Overall increased risk of death
The lower a mans testosterone level, the higher the risk of death, from any causes, especially from heart diseases. This is the conclusion of a 2007 study involving almost 12,000 participants aged 40 to 79 who were evaluated long term from 1993 to 1997, by researchers from the University of Cambridge. This study did not find a connection between low testosterone and an increased risk of cancer.
Low testosterone dangers are significant. You are urged to get your levels checked and discuss with your doctor the appropriate treatment plan.