Men with type 2 diabetes and low testosterone have greater risk for atherosclerosis

Atherosclerosis, a condition characterized by plaque buildup in the arteries, is more likely to affect men who have low testosterone and type 2 diabetes.

A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found the association to be especially strong in middle-aged men.

Part of the problem may be rooted in the idea that testosterone therapy has been linked to cardiovascular risk factors.

The study

The study included 115 men with type 2 diabetes and no history of cardiovascular disease. Researchers measured testosterone levels in the men, finding that participants who had type 2 diabetes were six times more likely to have increased thickness of the carotid artery, as well as endothelium dysfunction - where the inner lining of blood vessels does not function properly.

"We still need to determine whether testosterone is directly involved in the development of atherosclerosis or if it is merely an indicator of advanced disease," said study author Javier Mauricio Farias, MD, of the Hospital Universitario Sanatorio Guemes in Buenos Aires, Argentina. "This study is a stepping stone to better understanding the risks of cardiovascular events in men who have both low testosterone and Type 2 diabetes."

Source: Endocrine Society

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