[Positive effects of DHEA therapy on insulin resistance and lipids in men with angiographically verified coronary heart disease--preliminary study]

Endokrynol Pol. Nov-Dec 2005;56(6):904-10.
[Article in Polish]


Objectives: The aim of this study was to analyze the influence of DHEA therapy on insulin resistance (FIRI, FG/FI) and serum lipids in men with angiographically verified coronary heart disease (CHD).

Material and methods: The study included thirty men aged 41-60 years (mean age 52+/-0.90 yr) with serum DHEA-S concentration<2000 microg/l, who were randomized into a double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over trial. Subjects completed the 80 days study of 40 days of 150 mg oral DHEA daily or placebo, and next groups were changed after 30 days of wash-out. Fasting early morning blood samples were obtained at baseline and after each treatment to determine serum hormones levels (testosterone, DHEA-S, LH, FSH estradiol and IGF-1) and also metabolic profile (total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, triglicerides, HDL-cholesterol, insulin, glucose, fasting insulin resistance index--FIRI and FG/FI ratio).

Results: Administration of DHEA was associated with 4.5-fold increase in DHEA-S levels. Relative to baseline DHEA administration resulted in a decrease in insulin levels by 40% (p<0.005) and fasting insulin resistance index (FIRI) by 47% (p<0.004). Also total cholesterol levels and LDL-cholesterol levels decreased significantly (from 222.9+/-6.6 mg/dL to 207.4+/-6.6 mg/dL and from 143.9+/-6.9 mg/dL to 130.5+/-6.0 mg/dL respectively; p<0.05). Glucose levels dropped significant below baseline values after DHEA (p<0.001). Estrogen levels significantly increased after DHEA (p<0.05). While changes of serum concentrations of testosterone, LH, FSH, IGF-I, HDL-cholesterol, triglycerides were not statistical significant. Tolerance of the treatment was good and no adverse effects were observed.

Conclusions: DHEA therapy in dose of 150 mg daily during 40 days in men with DHEA levels<2000 microg/l decreased total cholesterol concentration, insulin and glucose levels and fasting insulin resistance index (FIRI). This therapy may be a beneficial against CHD risk factors.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Cholesterol / blood*
  • Coronary Artery Disease / blood
  • Coronary Artery Disease / drug therapy*
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / administration & dosage*
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone Sulfate / blood
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Estradiol
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / blood
  • Humans
  • Insulin / blood
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / analysis
  • Luteinizing Hormone / blood
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Testosterone / blood
  • Triglycerides / blood


  • Blood Glucose
  • Insulin
  • Triglycerides
  • Testosterone
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone
  • Estradiol
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone Sulfate
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
  • Luteinizing Hormone
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone
  • Cholesterol