Perioperative substitution testosterone therapy in patients with advanced head and neck squamous cell carcinoma

Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2023 Aug:188:104062. doi: 10.1016/j.critrevonc.2023.104062. Epub 2023 Jun 28.


Testosterone replacement therapy is becoming more and more popular in men as "anti-aging medicine". Testosterone has beneficial effects on body mass and muscle gain, and much research has examined testosterone in palliative cancer therapy for oncology patients. In addition to direct effects on weight gain, testosterone improves mood and self-confidence, strength, libido, muscle mass, bone density, and cognitive functions and reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease. Lower testosterone levels are found in 65 % of male patients with progressive tumors compared to only 6 % of men in the general population. We hypothesize that perioperative substitution testosterone therapy (PSTT) together with a balanced diet, may be more effective than balanced diet alone in the overall treatment outcome of patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinomas. Therefore, PSTT in combination with a balanced diet should be considered as an additional tool for head and neck carcinoma treatment.

Keywords: Advanced carcinoma; Perioperative therapy; Squamous cell carcinoma; Substitution; Testosterone.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aging
  • Bone Density
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma of Head and Neck / drug therapy
  • Testosterone* / therapeutic use


  • Testosterone