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Testosterone Controversy Continues

Does Sexual Inactivity Lower Testosterone?

More food for thought comes from research published in January in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. The study, conducted by Australian scientists, investigated a cause and effect angle of testosterone. Does low testosterone lead to reduced sexual function? Or is it the other way around?

They assessed data from over 1,200 men age 70 and older who were participants in the Concord Health and Ageing in Men Project (CHAMP). Levels of serum testosterone, dihydrotestosterone, estradiol, and estrone were measured at baseline and again two years later.

They found that a decline in serum testosterone, but not the other hormones, was strongly associated with declines in sexual activity and desire. (Erectile function was not affected.)

The authors added that the decrease in testosterone was “strikingly small” – less than 10%.

They noted that their findings did not prove a cause and effect relationship. But the results did “raise the hypothesis that reduced sexual function may reduce serum [testosterone] rather than the reverse.”


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