Men with naturally occurring high levels of testosterone may have less episodes of heart attack than their counterparts with lower levels of testosterone. Studies have shown that men with a high level of testosterone are less likely to suffer heart attacks or other related issues such as stroke.
According to the Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Sweden, elderly men with high testosterone show greater levels of protection against cardiovascular events. This finding suggests that lower testosterone is a potential marker for increased risk of heart disease.
Any substantial health problems such as obesity can lower testosterone levels, but the findings of the University show that out of 2400 Swedish men in their 70s, those with elevated testosterone were less likely to suffer heart attack or stroke than those with lower levels. The study also took into account diabetes, stroke or high blood pressure as well. It is not know yet if testosterone replacement could impact the rates of heart attack.
Clinical trials are needed to discover if testosterone replacement actually cuts the risk of heart attack or not. The results thus far are ambivalent about the male hormone. The intermediate factors of heart disease such as cholesterol levels and high blood sugars have shown mixed results.
Potential reasons for why higher natural testosterone levels may be good for the heart include the fact that higher testosterone generally means less body fat and more lean muscle, however, risks such as blood clots, liver damage or prostate cancer from hormone therapy should be evaluated. So far the studies have been about persons with naturally occurring high testosterone. No studies have been done using hormone replacement drug therapy.
The experience with hormone replacement therapy (HRT) in women offers a reason to be careful. Many women used HRT in an attempt to stop heart disease and the bone debilitation of osteoporosis. A large clinical trial in the U.S. discovered that the incidents of blood clots, heart attack, and stroke and breast cancer increased with those taking the therapy compared to those that got placebos.
The studies are encouraging that men with naturally occurring high levels of testosterone may have less episodes of heart attack than their counterparts with lower levels of testosterone, but further studies are warranted before hormone replacement therapy becomes standardized treatment.