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Testosterone therapy may be fatal medication error for some men

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2014 | Medication Errors

Colorado men who are prescribed treatment for low testosterone are often able to apply a cream, a gel or a patch to their skin and see benefits. However, for some men this might be considered a medication error because heightened levels of the male hormone could heighten their risk of heart attacks and strokes, even death. The United States Department of Agriculture’s Food and Drug Administration recently opened a probe into popular testosterone therapies for men after research was released showing the drugs’ dangers.

The new study showed that adding testosterone to men’s systems increased the heart attack risk of men 65 and older. Also, men younger than 65 but who had a history of heart disease were also revealed to be at greater risk. The treatments were approved by the FDA for men suffering from hypogonadism, a disease in which the male body produces too little testosterone. Hypogonadism can be caused by a problem with a man’s testicles or his brain’s pituitary and hypothalamus.

Recently, testosterone therapy was used for issues outside of hypogonadism such as weakness, lack of endurance and lack of libido. Although this is more common in older men because of their age, some medical literature said that hypogonadism was on the increase in the U.S. recently. Research showed that 12 percent of men over the age of 50 fit the criteria of ailment, as do 19 percent of those over 60, 28 percent over 70 and 49 percent of men older than 80.

Medication that works for some may turn out to be the wrong prescription for others, in this case, younger men versus older men. A negligent pharmacist or negligent physician also might be sued for delivering or prescribing the wrong drug to a patient.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Pumping Up Low T (Testosterone) and the Risk of Heart Attack“, Dr. Susan Taylor, February 18, 2014