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Diabetes Control Can Increase Men's Testosterone Levels

Study suggests metabolic control may help men with diabetes-related erectile dysfunction

THURSDAY, Sept. 3 (HealthDay News) -- In men with type 2 diabetes who have erectile dysfunction, better glycemic control may significantly increase serum testosterone levels, according to a study published in the September issue of Urology.

Ahmed I. El-Sakka, M.D., of the Al-Noor Specialist Hospital, Diabetic and Endocrine Centre in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, and colleagues studied 159 patients (mean age, 53.9 years). At baseline, they found that the prevalence of low total testosterone, low DHEA-S, and hyperinsulinemia was 25.8, 6.3, and 30.2 percent, respectively, and initiated lifestyle modification in addition to hypoglycemic agents and/or insulin therapy.

After three and six months, the researchers observed significant increases in mean total testosterone levels (from 4.2 to 4.7 and 5.3, respectively) and significant decreases in insulin levels (from 23.7 to 22.8 and 17.8, respectively). They also found a significant association between diabetes control and normal testosterone levels, and between normal testosterone levels and less-severe erectile dysfunction.

"Although the study was not designed to show improvement of erectile function or libido, it provides a foundation for further work to investigate these outcomes," states the author of an accompanying editorial. "Given the salutary effects of good diabetic control on vascular and ophthalmologic disorders and the observations that normalizing testosterone levels in other forms of hypogonadism can be beneficial for libido and erectile function, this work should encourage other investigators in the field."

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