Purpose of review: Male hormones can significantly impact a man's quality of life. Recently, there has been controversy with the use of testosterone and its impact on a man's quality of life. These controversies include testosterone's effect on cardiovascular disease, benign prostatic hyperplasia, prostate cancer, and fertility. The purpose of this manuscript is to further evaluate mainly testosterone's effect in these controversial areas as well as testosterone's overall effect on a man's quality of life.
Recent findings: Recent findings suggest that testosterone does not increase a man's risk of developing benign prostatic hyperplasia or prostate cancer. Men with low testosterone levels are more likely to suffer a cardiovascular event and develop insulin resistance. Exogenous testosterone is a natural contraceptive and men desiring to preserve their fertility should use mechanisms to raise their own natural endogenous testosterone production.
Summary: Although testosterone deficiency can significantly impair a man's quality of life, testosterone therapy has been shown to significantly improve many of these qualities, such as depression, bone mineral density, energy, libido, erectile function, muscle mass, insulin resistance, and lower urinary tract symptoms. Testosterone therapy can be administered safely to symptomatic hypogonadal men.