Endocrine Society, Partners Endorse Statement Clarifying Benefits, Risks of Testosterone Therapy

On September 3, the Endocrine Society and 10 other internationally esteemed medical societies issued the first Global Position Statement on the use of testosterone in the treatment of women.

The statement was published in four leading international medical journals and has been authored by a diverse team of leading experts based around the world. It follows years of debate regarding testosterone therapy for women and, for the first time, provides agreement among experts and medical societies about how testosterone could be prescribed for women.

“This position statement has far reaching global consequences. It not only reassures clinicians that a trial of testosterone therapy is appropriate for women with Hypoactive Sexual Desire Dysfunction (HSDD), but very emphatically states that, at present, the available evidence does not support the use of testosterone for any other symptoms or medical condition,” says co-author Susan Ruth Davis, FRACP,,PhD,,MBBS, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. “It also clearly advises that when testosterone therapy is given, the resultant blood levels should not be above those seen in healthy young women. We hope this will allow women who may benefit to be offered treatment, and simultaneously protect women from receiving inappropriate testosterone therapy.”

“This position statement has far reaching global consequences. It not only reassures clinicians that a trial of testosterone therapy is appropriate for women with Hypoactive Sexual Desire Dysfunction (HSDD), but very emphatically states that, at present, the available evidence does not support the use of testosterone for any other symptoms or medical condition.”

An international task force of experts from leading medical societies, brought together by the International Menopause Society, produced the Global Position Statement to provide clear guidance regarding the prescribing and measurement of testosterone for female testosterone therapy as well as advice on testosterone prescribing practices that have the potential to be ineffectual or cause harm.

They concluded that testosterone can be effective at improving sexual wellbeing for postmenopausal women with HSDD. Recognized benefits included improved sexual desire, arousal, orgasm and pleasure, together with reduced concerns and distress about sex.

HSDD is thought to affect around 32% of women at midlife; and, while it’s common for women to lose interest in sex around the time of the menopause and after, the use of testosterone as a treatment offers women an approach that may significantly improve their sexual and related emotional wellbeing.

The international panel is calling on industry, researchers and funding organizations to recognize the need for further research into testosterone therapy for women of all ages and the development and licensing of products formulated specifically for women.

The statement was developed by a multinational, multidisciplinary task force, the members of which were delegates from leading medical societies, and was peer reviewed by expert committees of endorsing societies from across the world. It has been translated into 13 languages and aims to improve the sexual wellbeing of women on a global scale.

 

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