Article

How to recognize late-onset hypogonadism in men with sexual dysfunction.

Sexual Medicine and Andrology Unit, Department of Clinical Physiopathology, University of Florence, Florence 50139, Italy.
Asian Journal of Andrology (Impact Factor: 2.53). 03/2012; 14(2):251-9. DOI: 10.1038/aja.2011.138
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Late-onset hypogonadism (LOH) has been considered the most common form of male hypogonadism with a prevalence of approximately 1 in 100 men. Diagnosis of LOH should be made in symptomatic men with unequivocally low serum testosterone (T) levels. However, its clinical presentation is often insidious and difficult to recognize because it is characterized by nonspecific symptoms that make differential diagnosis with physiological ageing problematic. Sexual dysfunction is the most important determinant for medical consultation and the most specific symptom associated with low T. We therefore analysed a consecutive series of 1734 subjects who attended our unit for sexual dysfunction to investigate the associations between low T (different thresholds), sexual parameters, medical history data (delayed puberty, pituitary disease or cryptorchidism) and their physical exam results. Metabolic parameters, in particular waist circumference, display the greatest accuracy in detecting low T. We found that only the association of several symptoms and signs could significantly raise the clinical suspicion of low T. Structured inventories, which cluster together symptoms and signs of hypogonadism, can help clinicians suspect androgen deficiency. In particular, structured interviews, such as ANDROTEST, have been demonstrated to have a greater accuracy when compared to self reported questionnaires in detecting low T levels.

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    ABSTRACT: IntroductionAlterations of gonadal, thyroid, and pituitary hormones, along with metabolic disorders, might be involved in causing erectile dysfunction (ED).AimThe prevalence of endocrine abnormalities in two different cohorts from the general and the symptomatic populations of Florence was compared.Methods The first group is a general population sample derived from a Florentine spin-off of the European Male Aging Study (EMAS cohort; n = 202); the second group is a series of n = 3,847 patients attending our clinic for ED (UNIFI cohort).ResultsBoth primary and secondary hypogonadism were more often observed in the UNIFI than in the EMAS cohort (2.8 vs. 0%; P < 0.05 and 18.9 vs. 8%; P < 0.001, respectively). However, only the second association retained statistical significance after adjusting for age. Compensated hypogonadism was more common in the EMAS cohort (4.4 vs. 8.1%; P < 0.05). No statistically significant difference in the prevalence of overt thyroid disorders was observed. Conversely, subclinical hyperthyroidism was more prevalent in the EMAS cohort (2 vs. 4.1%, P < 0.05). No significant difference in the prevalence of hyperprolactinemia was detected, while the prevalence of hypoprolactinemia was significantly higher in the UNIFI than in the EMAS cohort (28.2% vs. 17.8%, P = 0.001), even after the adjustment for age, BMI, and testosterone (P = 0.001). Central obesity (waist ≥102 cm), impaired fasting glucose (IFG), and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) were more often detected in UNIFI patients (31.7 vs. 22.8%, P < 0.05; 44.5 vs. 33.3%, P < 0.05; 20.1% vs. 1.0%, P < 0.001 in the UNIFI and EMAS cohort, respectively), even after adjusting for age. In contrast, the prevalence of overweight and obesity did not differ between the two groups.ConclusionT2DM, IFG, central obesity, secondary hypogonadism, and hypoprolactinemia are more frequent in subjects consulting for ED than in the general population of the same geographic area. Our data suggest that these conditions could play a central role in determining consultation for ED. Maseroli E, Corona G, Rastrelli G, Lotti F, Cipriani S, Forti G, Mannucci E, and Maggi M. Prevalence of endocrine and metabolic disorders in subjects with erectile dysfunction: A comparative study. J Sex Med **;**:**–**.
    Journal of Sexual Medicine 03/2015; 12(4). DOI:10.1111/jsm.12832 · 3.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Erectile dysfunction is highly prevalent, affecting up to half of men in their 50–70s, and has been variably associated to a variety of causes including unhealthy lifestyles, such as smoking or overweight, or comorbidities such as hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and neurological disorders. General interest toward ED has exploded since the introduction of phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors—oral drugs that are widely accepted as the first line treatment in patients suffering from this conditions. In the last decade, the time lapse between first symptoms of sexual disorders and seeking of medical advice has greatly reduced. Unfortunately, none of the PDE5i has been proven curative, but rather acts as a symptomatic treatment. The availability of very active and safe drugs, however, diminished the space for diagnosis and search of etiological treatments. This is particularly true for the several endo-crinopathies associated with ED. A number of epidemio-logical data support an inverse relationship between sexual health and testosterone levels, and it is well accepted that testosterone deficiency is a good marker of sexual and physical frailty. However, several other hormones, including LH, prolactin, TSH, and FT4 are involved in sexual functioning and should be investigated in a proper work-out of ED. Existing guidelines provide information almost entirely focusing on late-onset hypogonadism and therapeutic strategies; this mini-review aims to provide a wider spectrum of the diagnostic endocrine work-out of ED patients unrevealing the complexity of conditions, overt or subclinical, which can affect ED.