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Testosterone not effective for treating frailty

Testosterone gels may offer frail, old men a chance to regain some of their youthful vigour, but the effects fade away as soon as they stop treatment.

Testosterone not effective for treating frailty

Testosterone gels may offer frail, old men a chance to regain some of their youthful vigour, but the effects fade away as soon as they stop treatment.

Testosterone is not approved for treating frailty, but a handful of studies, suggest short-term treatment increases muscle mass, strength and quality of life in older men. Other studies have hinted that treating middle-aged and older men with the hormone might raises the risk of heart disease and prostate problems, however, making short treatments all the more attractive.

To assess the durability of testosterone effects in frail men, researchers followed 274 older men in Britain who had been randomly assigned to treatment with a testosterone gel or a placebo.

It was found that all of the benefits gained over six months of therapy - including increased muscle mass, leg strength and improved sexual function - disappeared six months later.

While hardly surprising, the findings slash hopes that a short hormone boost would break the vicious cycle of muscle loss, fatigue and disability that blunts the quality of life for some seniors.
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