Wednesday Bubble: Testosterone and the metabolic syndrome

Posted by on Nov 12, 2008 in heart disease | 4 comments

Today’s Bubble features a pretty interesting research finding: contrary to what experts have previously believed about the relationship between estrogen and the metabolic syndome evidence continues to accrue that testosterone may ultimately be identified as the culprit. I wrote about this in an earlier post and there are some interesting stats about risk, etc. (You may recall that metabolic syndrome describes the cluster of heart disease risk factors that include overweight, high blood pressure and blood sugar levels, high blood fats levels and low HDL-cholesterol.)

In the current study, published in the early online edition of the Menopause Journal, researchers evaluated 257 cases of metabolic syndrome found in a group of 1862 women enrolled in the Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation.

They found that the ratio of testosterone to estrogen during the menopausal transition, rather than changes in each individual hormone, was an important factor in determining which who would develop the metabolic syndrome. What’s more, faster increases in this ratio over time also increased risk.

What this brings to mind is the question of whether or not it is wise to use testosterone to improve sexual dysfunction during menopause? I’m going to be addressing this in a future post.


  1. 11-12-2008

    Did they find a relationship between testosterone and increased weight? I look forward to you post reqarding using testosterone to treat sexual dysfunction.

  2. 11-12-2008

    Dr. Hubbard: Not so far as I know; at least it wasn’t mentioned in the abstract. Outcomes measure was the relationship of metabolic syndrome to total E2, Total T, sex hormone globulin, free androgen index and higher total T at baseline.

  3. 4-15-2009

    After reading the article, I feel that I really need more info. Could you suggest some resources ?

    • 4-15-2009

      Happy to oblige if you tell me what you want to know.

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