Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Reflections on testosterone

Many men are receiving unnecessary testosterone prescriptions

BMJ 2012; 345 doi: (Published 21 August 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e5469
  1. Earn H Gan, clinical research fellow in endocrinology1,
  2. Stewart Pattman, specialty registrar, chemical pathology (metabolic medicine)2,
  3. Simon Pearce, professor of endocrinology1,
  4. Richard Quinton, consultant and senior lecturer in endocrinology3
  1. 1Institute of Genetic Medicine, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 3BZ, UK
  2. 2Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
  3. 3Endocrine Unit, Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
  1. earn.gan{at}

Male hypogonadism is characterised by sexual dysfunction, loss of muscle bulk, central obesity, fatigue, mood and sleep disturbances, osteoporosis, and anaemia. Although these features are associated with low serum testosterone, not all men with low serum testosterone are definitively hypogonadal, and there is a large symptom overlap with obesity and non-endocrine illness. Importantly, testosterone replacement may not be appropriate for …

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