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Testosterone against libido loss in menopause
Menopause is the point in time when a woman's menstrual periods stop and her reproductive capacity ends. This process is often accompanied by psychological and physical changes, which often lead to a loss of libido. A large Australian study has now shown that hormone treatment with testosterones can rekindle the love life of menopausal women.
A research team led by Professor Susan Davis, who heads the Women's Health Research Program at the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine in Melbourne, showed in a recent study that testosterones can have a positive effect on menopausal women. The treatment significantly increased sexual desire, but also pleasure, arousal, orgasm, response to sexual stimuli, and self-image. Overall, satisfaction after hormone treatment increased in many women. The results were recently published in the specialist journal "The Lancet".
Most comprehensive analysis of testosterone treatment
Testosterone is actually considered the male hormone. Even if it is more common in men, it also plays an important role in women. In the course of life, the testosterone level in women decreases continuously. After menopause, the hormone can drop rapidly. Many scientists consider this hormone loss to be the cause of their unwillingness to have sex. Professor Davis' team has now carried out a large meta-analysis to examine 36 studies with data from a total of 8,480 women on whom the hormone treatment was tested.
A lot of ambiguities
Women spend around a third of their lives after menopause. Despite many studies on the subject, there is currently no approved testosterone-based agent because there are many ambiguities in the treatment and its use is considered controversial. For example, there were fears that such treatment could increase the risk of heart disease and diabetes. The Australian researchers have now been able to remove some ambiguities.
Overall, the team found a strong and continuous improvement in sexual function and perceived satisfaction in around 3,800 women. "Our results suggest that it is time to develop testosterone treatment tailored for postmenopausal women, rather than treating it at higher concentrations for men," said Davis. It was a missed opportunity because the treatment not only improves sex life, but also overall personal well-being.
“The positive effects for postmenopausal women shown in our study go beyond simply increasing the number of sexual activities,” emphasizes the study leader. Many women improved their self-image and worries and fears decreased.
Many health risks have been refuted
There were no negative effects on postmenopausal women with elevated blood glucose or insulin levels. No negative effects were found on blood pressure either. However, only limited data was available on the risk of breast cancer, which is why further studies on this topic are necessary. Some women reported mild side effects such as increased acne and increased hair growth. However, none of the participants stopped taking it on their own initiative, which indicates that the positive aspects predominated. The research team advocates the creation of guidelines for clinical practice and would like to conduct further long-term studies in this area. (vb)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
Graduate editor (FH) Volker Blasek
- Green, Sally / Page, Matthew J. / Davis, Susan R. / et al .: Safety and efficacy of testosterone for women: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trial data, The Lancet, 2019, thelancet.com
- School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine: Large study shows beneficial role of testosterone to treat menopause (accessed: July 26, 2019), monash.edu