The relationship between metabolic syndrome (MS) and hypogonadism has always been investigated in study groups confounded with aging, obesity or chronic metabolic disorders. So far, there has been no data about the presence of MS in young hypogonadal patients. Also, there is controversial data about the metabolic effects of testosterone replacement therapy. We investigated the frequency of MS in treatment-naïve, young men with congenital hypogonadal hypogonadism (CHH). We also searched for the effect of testosterone replacement on the metabolic profiles of this specific patient group.
A total of 332 patients (age 21.68±2.09 years) were enrolled. The control group included 395 age- and body mass index (BMI)-matched healthy young men (age 21.39±1.49 years). Standard regimen of testosterone esters (250 mg/3 weeks) was given to 208 patients.
MS was more prevalent in CHH (P<0.001) according to healthy controls. The patients had higher arterial blood pressure, waist circumference (WC), triglyceride (P<0.001 for all), fasting glucose (P=0.02), fasting insulin (P=0.004), homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) (P=0.002) and lower high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (P<0.001) levels. After 5.63±2.6 months of testosterone treatment, the BMI, WC (P<0.001 for both), systolic blood pressure (P=0.002) and triglyceride level (P=0.04) were increased and the total and HDL cholesterol levels were decreased (P=0.02 and P<0.001 respectively).
This study shows increased prevalence of MS and unfavorable effects of testosterone replacement in young patients with CHH. Long-term follow-up studies are warranted to investigate the cardiovascular safety of testosterone treatment in this specific population.