Testosterone Prescribing Down Since 2013
Decline coincided with reports linking testosterone to adverse cardiovascular events
WEDNESDAY, July 18, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The percentage of U.S. men receiving testosterone prescriptions decreased from 2013 through 2016, according to a research letter published in the July 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
In an effort to assess recent trends in testosterone prescribing (2002 through 2016), Jacques Baillargeon, Ph.D., from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, and colleagues used data from the commercial health insurance database Clinformatics Data Mart to identify 9,962,538 men 30 years and older with continuous enrollment during the index and prior year. A minimum of 1,823,000 men were included in any year. Persons in the South and those aged 21 to 64 years were overrepresented in the data set.
The researchers found that total testosterone use increased among men from 0.52 percent in 2002 to 3.20 percent in 2013, but then decreased to 1.67 percent in 2016. A similar pattern was seen for new users, established users, and all age groups. There was variance by geographic region in the percentage of new testosterone, but the relative decreases were similar across regions.
"The steepest decrease coincided with two published reports of testosterone-associated adverse cardiovascular events and a U.S. Food and Drug Administration communication," the authors write.
One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.