Low-testosterone drugs are one of the most heavily prescribed drugs on the market, as low-T affects millions of middle-aged men. While low-T drugs have been available to the public via prescription for years, a September 2014 panel for the Food and Drug Administration recommended that drug manufacturers look into whether the drugs may increase users’ risk of heart attack and stroke.
Dangerous Side Effects of Low-T Drugs
The biggest concern facing those who take low-T drugs is the increased risk of stroke, heart attack, and death. A 2013 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association monitored 8,709 men with low testosterone who underwent a coronary angiography in the Veterans Administration health system between 2005 and 2011, 1,223 of whom started low-T therapy after the coronary angiography.
Of the patients receiving testosterone therapy, 67 died, 23 had myocardial infarctions, and 33 had strokes. Overall, the men who took testosterone therapy were at about a 30 percent increased risk of adverse outcomes like those mentioned compared to the group that did not undergo the therapy.
A study published in 2014 in PLOS One also found an increased risk of heart attack among younger men with pre-existing heart disease and in older men who took testosterone therapy compared to those who did not.
Meanwhile, women exposed to low-T drugs – such as through contact with men using the drugs – may develop masculine characteristics (such as facial hair). Furthermore, exposure of a pregnant woman to the drug may cause harm to the unborn fetus. For children, exposure may cause enlarged sexual organs, aggressive behavior, advanced bone growth, increased sexual drive, and more.
The FDA Takes Action on Low-T Drugs
In 2014, the FDA stated that it was monitoring the risk from low-T drugs. One concern specifically mentioned – in addition to the studies detailing the increased risk of heart problems, stroke, and death – was the number of men taking testosterone therapy drugs. The FDA reported there had been a 65 percent increase in the number of sales of low-T products between 2009 and 2013, bringing into question the number of men taking the drugs for lifestyle reasons as opposed to medical reasons.
In response to the increase in the number of men taking the drug, as well as the studies revealing the potential harm of low-T drugs, the FDA announced in September 2014 to add language to labels restricting the drugs’ intended use. Furthermore, the FDA has asked outside experts to investigate the use of low testosterone drugs in certain patients – and whether or not current evidence still supports the use of low-T drugs for said patients – as well as the potential risks of taking these drugs. It also recommends manufacturers study the potential risk.
Common Low-T Drugs
There are a variety of low-T drugs currently on the market. Below is a list of common testosterone therapy drugs.
What to Do if You’ve Been Prescribed Low-T Drugs
If you were prescribed low-T drugs and experienced negative medical side effects as a result, such as a heart attack or stroke, get help from a legal professional, as you may be entitled to compensation for damages. If your health complications were a direct result of your low-T medication, you may be able to recover damages like medical expenses, pain and suffering, and more.
At Reyes, Brown, & Reilley, our attorneys can provide you with more information about how to prove a low-T drug harmed you, how to file a claim for damages, and what types of compensation you may be eligible to recover. To speak to a personal injury attorney about your case today, call our offices now at 214-526-7900.