Metabolic Syndrome in Male Hypogonadism

Front Horm Res. 2018;49:131-155. doi: 10.1159/000485999. Epub 2018 May 24.


Metabolic syndrome (MetS) and hypogonadism (HG) are frequently comorbid. In this review, we summarize interconnections between the construct of MetS and the presence of HG, as well as the effect of specific treatments for each condition on this association. Data from meta-analytic studies suggest a bidirectional pathogenic relationship. In fact, reduced T (-2.21 [-2.43 to -1.98] nmol/L) at baseline predicts incident MetS. On the other hand, MetS at study entry increases the risk of developing HG (OR 2.46 [1.77-3.42]). The bidirectional pathogenic link between MetS and HG is further confirmed by the fact that treating MetS with insulin sensitizer is associated with an increase in T. In addition, a huge effect on increasing T is found in obese men undergoing procedures for losing weight, with more dramatic results obtained after bariatric surgery than after low calorie diet (increase in T 8.73 [6.51-10.95] nmol/L and 2.87 [1.68-4.07] nmol/L, respectively, according to a recent meta-analysis). On the other hand, there is evidence of an improvement in several metabolic derangements characterizing MetS in subjects treated with T. However, the latter results are still not conclusive and need further evidence from randomized clinical trials.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Comorbidity*
  • Eunuchism / drug therapy
  • Eunuchism / epidemiology
  • Eunuchism / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / drug therapy
  • Metabolic Syndrome / epidemiology
  • Metabolic Syndrome / metabolism*
  • Testosterone / metabolism*


  • Testosterone