Could Low Testosterone Shorten Your Life?
Posted: August 9, 2022
One common but serious health condition that affects many men is low testosterone. This is where you have deficient testosterone levels in your blood. It can cause many issues with your health and everyday life. However, what many don’t realize is that it might even shorten your life.
Testosterone plays important roles for your health all throughout your body. Therefore, testosterone deficiency, also known as low T or hypogonadism, can lead to major complications for your overall health. In this article, we’ll explore the evidence that men with untreated low testosterone may be at risk for an early death.
Low Testosterone Might Put You in an Early Grave
Men with low testosterone often face serious symptoms and health complications. For instance, it’s frequently associated with conditions like:
- Type 2 diabetes
- Heart disease
- Chronic stress
- Sleep disorders
Each of these associated conditions comes with potentially life-threatening risks. Because of this, many researchers have looked at the association between low T and an early death.
According to the CDC, the top 10 causes of death for American men include:
1. Heart disease
3. Unintentional injuries
4. Chronic lower respiratory diseases
7. Alzheimer’s disease
9. Chronic liver disease
10. Kidney disease
While scientists are still studying all the ways that hypogonadism can affect a man’s health, there are several studies that show a possible link between low testosterone and an early grave. Let’s look at some of the evidence:
Studies Show Men with Low Testosterone Have Higher Risk for Death of Any Cause
There have been dozens of studies over the years to look at how low testosterone affects the risk for death. Many have found an increase in the risk for all-cause mortality, which is death of any cause.
One study from 2006 found a significant increase in the risk for death for men with low testosterone. The researchers looked at a group of men ages 40 or older, some with low T and some without. They found that the men with hypogonadism had an 88% higher risk for death of any cause during the follow up, even after adjusting for other factors like poor health, obesity, and smoking.
Another study from 2014 also saw a link between hypogonadism and all-cause mortality. These researchers looked at several different studies that also saw an association between death and low testosterone levels.
Therefore, if you have untreated testosterone deficiency, it could cost you your life. Some experts believe that low T may increase your risk for poor overall health, which could lead to your death.
Men with Diabetes and Low T are More Likely to Suffer an Early Death
Other studies have looked specifically at how low T affects men with certain health conditions. For instance, one academic article from the European Journal of Endocrinology looked at how low testosterone affected survival rates for men with type 2 diabetes.
The researchers divided the diabetic men into groups with either normal or low testosterone levels. They found that there was a significant increase in death rates among the men with lower testosterone levels, even when adjusting for other potential risk factors. The study even suggested that testosterone levels may even be able to predict early deaths for men with diabetes, though more research is needed.
It’s also important to note that they also looked at men who received treatment for their low T levels through testosterone replacement therapy. The men in that group did have a lower risk for death during the study, with a rate of about 8.4% compared to the untreated men with hypogonadism who had a 19.2% mortality rate. Therefore, the researchers concluded that treating low T may improve survival rates for men with both diabetes and hypogonadism.
Low Testosterone May Increase Your Risk of Death from Heart Disease
As we’ve seen, low testosterone may increase your risk for death of any cause. However, several studies have found a greater risk for death from heart disease among men with testosterone deficiency.
For instance, a 2007 study looked at men aged 40 to 79 with low testosterone. They found not only that low testosterone was associated with a higher risk of death of any cause, but specifically from cardiovascular disease. The study authors theorized that this may be due to the link between low T and metabolic syndrome, which is a group of health conditions like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and excess abdominal fat.
Other research from 2010 also saw a link between low T and death from heart disease. All the men in the study had coronary artery heart disease and about 1 in 4 of the men had low testosterone. They found that the men with low T were nearly twice as likely to die compared to the men with normal testosterone levels.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men in the U.S. Therefore, this study is certainly concerning for men with low testosterone.
Testosterone Is Important for Your Overall Health and Quality of Life
The hormone testosterone is known for many things, such as driving puberty forward in the teen years and controlling libido as an adult. Yet, it also does many other things in the body. For instance, it helps you build muscle mass, keep your bones strong, produce blood cells, and manage fat distribution. It can also affect your mood and energy levels.
Therefore, it makes sense that low testosterone may have far-reaching impacts on your overall health. These effects may even become life-threatening and can shorten your lifespan. What’s more, it can also negatively affect your quality and enjoyment of life due to the symptoms.
Low T can Cause Life-Altering Symptoms
Low testosterone can come with many symptoms that negatively impact your life. For instance, many men notice that they feel chronically tired and unmotivated due to low energy levels. You might also experience low libido and erectile dysfunction that interferes with your sex life and romantic relationships.
Other symptoms of low T include mood changes like depression and anxiety, weight gain, and difficulty concentrating. All of these can have major impacts on your daily life.
Yet, many men ignore their symptoms, chalking them up to normal aging. It’s important to know that if you’re experiencing hypogonadism and its symptoms, there is treatment available that can not only improve your health but improve your life by alleviating your symptoms.
Can Testosterone Replacement Therapy Reduce the Risks Associated with Low T?
With all the dangers of low testosterone, you might wonder if there is any way to avoid them. There is some evidence that testosterone replacement therapy may help reduce some of those risks.
For instance, one study from 2019 found that men with low T that used testosterone therapy had lower mortality rates after a heart attack. The study looked at men with a history of heart attacks and low testosterone. The men who used testosterone therapy to restore their hormone levels to healthy ranges had lower risk for death.
Also, in a study we mentioned in an earlier section from the European Journal of Endocrinology in 2014, men who used testosterone replacement therapy saw lower risks for all-cause deaths including the risk for cardiovascular-related deaths.
Therefore, there is evidence that treating your low testosterone levels may help improve your risks for life-threatening complications.
Affordable, Convenient Health Care for Men at Low T Center
If you suspect you have low testosterone or another health condition, get in touch with our team at Low T Center. We are dedicated to providing men with affordable, convenient health care for a variety of conditions, including low T, erectile dysfunction, and sleep apnea. Our providers are here to help you address your health as a whole and improve your overall lifestyle. We also offer both in-clinic and at-home treatment options, including testosterone injections shipped directly to your doorstep. Make an appointment today to get started and take the first step toward better health.
Disclaimer: This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of Low T Center. You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.