Plasma testosterone level and the male genital system after chloroquine therapy

Boll Chim Farm. 1997 Jan;136(1):39-43.


Chloroquine phosphate and its analogue hydroxychloroquine are used on long term basis as anti-inflammatory drugs in the treatment of a multitude of chronic diseases. In the present work the dose of the drug was calculated and given to albino rats in the usual low therapeutic regimen used in man. This work has shown that chloroquine depresses testosterone secretion in a progressive manner which increased the longer the duration of treatment, sperm count was also decreased, the percent of abnormal forms increased and the weight of the testes and accessory sex organ (epididymis, vas deference, seminal vesicle and prostate) was also reduced, these abnormalities did not return to the normal control figures, even after one month of discontinuation of the drug. This work emphasizes the need for testosterone administration concomitantly with chloroquine treatment to maintain the integrity of the sexual organs of the patients. At the same time this work emphasizes the need of further study of the reversibility of the pathological lesions in the male genital tract after more prolonged administration of the drug than the three months period adopted in the present work.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antirheumatic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Chloroquine / pharmacology*
  • Genitalia, Male / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Spermatozoa / metabolism
  • Testosterone / blood
  • Testosterone / metabolism*


  • Antirheumatic Agents
  • Testosterone
  • Chloroquine