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Testosterone replacement therapy could improve the responses to insulin of men with Type 2 diabetes or metabolic syndrome, according to research.
Metabolic syndrome is a combination of medical disorders that can increase the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Men with theses conditions are prone to have low testosterone levels. Typically, levels fall if testicular function is subnormal, a condition termed hypogonadism.
Dr T Hugh Jones, of Barnsley Hospital and the University of Sheffield in the UK, and colleagues tested the effect of a testosterone gel (Tostran) on insulin resistance and symptoms of hypogonadism in 221 men with low testosterone levels.
The study showed a statistically significant improvement in insulin sensitivity in testosterone-treated men at 6 and 12 months.
Testosterone therapy also led to a significant improvement in the score on a standard assessment of erectile function after 6 and 12 months.
Dr Jones said: “These data tell us that replacement therapy for low testosterone in hypogonadal males not only improves sexual function but, more importantly, can also have an impact on insulin sensitivity.
“Long-term improvements in insulin resistance may help to improve cardiovascular and other diabetes complications and improve quality of life in this at-risk population.”
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