Prevalence of androgen deficiency in chronic spinal cord injury patients suffering from erectile dysfunction

Retrospective cross-sectional study.

To estimate the prevalence of biochemical androgen deficiency in Iranian spinal cord injured men suffering from erectile dysfunction (ED) and to determine factors related to this problem.

An andrology clinic of a teaching hospital in Tehran.

Men, 18 years of age and older, with chronic (>2 years) spinal cord injury (SCI) suffering from ED were recruited. Demographic data, hormonal and lipid levels, injury variables and drug history were obtained from the medical records. The relationships between biochemical androgen deficiency (unequivocally low serum testosterone levels) and patient characteristics, injury variables and laboratory data were determined.

Out of 319 patients, 32.6% had total testosterone deficiency and 29.1% had biochemical androgen deficiency. Of those with biochemical androgen deficiency, 93.5 and 85.7% had luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) within or below the normal ranges, respectively. Opioid use, triglyceride (TG) and total cholesterol (TC) were associated with biochemical androgen deficiency. Significant correlations between total testosterone level and sex hormone binding globulin (r=0.3, P<0.001), LH (r=0.2, P=0.02), TC (r=-0.1, P=0.04) and TG (r=-0.3, P<0.001) were found.

A substantial proportion of our patients with chronic SCI and ED had biochemical androgen deficiency. Opioid use, TG and TC levels were associated with biochemical androgen deficiency in our studied population. Standard screening of androgen deficiency and testosterone replacement therapy are recommended in men with chronic SCI suffering from ED.

Tehran University of Medical Sciences.Spinal Cord advance online publication, 20 June 2017; doi:10.1038/sc.2017.73.

Spinal cord. 2017 Jun 20 [Epub ahead of print]

M Behnaz, Z Majd, M Radfar, H Ajami, M Qorbani, A Kokab

Faculty of Pharmacy, Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran., Department of Obstetrics, Treatment Deputy of Alborz University of Medical Sciences, Karaj, Iran., Non-Communicable Disease Research Center, Alborz University of Medical Sciences, Karaj, Iran., Shafa Neuroscience Research Center, Khatam Al-Anbia Hospital, Tehran, Iran.