Holy Hormones Journal: Pushing hormone therapy on men. Interesting to note that their are 297 comments to this great article by Elisabeth Rosenthal. I am shaking my head over Dr. Finkelstein’s comment about testosterone gels: ““The problem is that no one has proved that it works and we don’t know the risks.” How is it that HRT – hormone replacement therapy – ended up on the market – with no one questioning the side effects for 30 years before an independent study on safety and risk was conducted by the National Women’s Health Institute?
Are male hormones more important than female hormones? Or is it that the women were the experiments and now that we know the synthetic hormones are dangerous period – there is an earlier battle cry over male hormone replacement therapy?
Dr. Finkelstein’s comment is one we should all remember – for every medication that we are considering taking. Remember many drugs are removed from the market in less than 5 years – because the risks outweigh the benefits.
The brain is the largest endocrine gland in the body. This is the same for women and men. It is so important for healthy hormone communication systems to function optimally. Synthetic hormones only exacerbate the breakdown in the signalling.
Now its your turn guys – let’s see how you feel about Pharma talking about you low libido on TV and magazine ads – for your family and everyone else to see.
A Push to Sell Testosterone Gels Troubles Doctors
The New York Times
October 15, 2013
The barrage of advertisements targets older men. “Have you noticed a recent deterioration of your ability to play sports?” “Do you have a decrease in sex drive?” “Do you have a lack of energy?”
If so, the ads warn, you should “talk to your doctor about whether you have low testosterone” — “Low T,” as they put it.
In the view of many physicians, that is in large part an invented condition. Last year, drug makers in the United States spent $3.47 billion on advertising directly to consumers, according to FiercePharma.com. And while ever-present ads like those from AbbVie Pharmaceuticals have buoyed sales of testosterone gels, that may be bad for patients as well as the United States’ $2.7 trillion annual health care bill, experts say.
Sales of prescription testosterone gels that are absorbed through the skin generated over $2 billion in American sales last year, a number that is expected to more than double by 2017. Abbott Laboratories — which owned AbbVie until Jan. 1 — spent $80 million advertising its version, AndroGel, last year.
Once a niche treatment for people suffering from hormonal deficiencies caused by medical problems like endocrine tumors or the disruptive effects of chemotherapy, the prescription gels are increasingly being sold as lifestyle products, to raise dipping levels of the male sex hormone as men age.
“The market for testosterone gels evolved because there is an appetite among men and because there is advertising,” said Dr. Joel Finkelstein, an associate professor at Harvard Medical School who is studying male hormone changes with aging. “The problem is that no one has proved that it works and we don’t know the risks.”