There is a debate over the association between low testosterone levels in body fluids and the occurrence of chronic periodontitis (CP). The aim of the present systematic review was to assess whether low testosterone levels in body fluids reflect CP. In order to identify studies relevant to the focus question: "Is there a relationship between low testosterone levels in body fluids and CP?" an electronic search without time or language restrictions was conducted up to June 2016 in indexed databases using different keywords: periodontitis, chronic periodontitis, periodontal diseases, testosterone, and gonadal steroid hormones. A total of eight studies were included in the present systematic review. The number of study participants ranged from 24 to 1,838 male individuals with ages ranging from 15 to 95 years. Seven studies measured testosterone levels in serum, two studies in saliva, and one study in gingiva. Four studies reported a negative association between serum testosterone levels and CP. Two studies reported a positive association between decreased testosterone levels in serum and CP. Increased levels of salivary testosterone among patients with CP were reported in one study; whereas one study reported no significant difference in the concentration of salivary testosterone between patients with and without CP. One study identified significant increase in the metabolism of testosterone in the gingiva of patients with CP. Within the limits of the evidence available, the relationship between low testosterone levels and CP remains debatable and further longitudinal studies and control trials are needed.
Keywords: hormones; men’s health; periodontal diseases; periodontitis; testosterone.