For many men, aging brings lower testosterone levels. And in recent years, testosterone replacement therapies became an alluring fountain of youth. Low T therapy promised men additional health benefits. But the cost from seeking more youth—the promise associated with so many low-t therapies—may be extremely high. In fact, low T therapy can cause serious cardiovascular issues, such as testosterone blood clots, strokes and heart attacks.
Off-Label Use Could Cause Testosterone Blood Clots to Form
Despite these dangers, aging men are eager to find solutions for what ails them. And this has led to many doctors prescribing low t medication off-label. In other words, doctors don’t prescribe them for their intended medical use. Instead, men use testosterone supplements to treat things off-label. This eagerness to use low t drugs for unintended purposes led to a five-fold prescription increase since 2000.
And as use increases, so do the associated health complications. Reported complications include low testosterone blood clots that lead to heart attack, stroke, and other severe injuries.
Health Complications Include Testosterone Blood Clots, Strokes, Heart Attacks
According to a Journal Sentinel/MedPage Today analysis of reports made to the FDA, testosterone products have been associated with more than 3,900 serious health complications since 2010. At least one in four issues, like testosterone blood clot, stroke and heart attack risks, involve cardiovascular events.
These same FDA reports also include information pertaining to 150 deaths and almost 2,000 hospitalizations.
Adding hormones to the body can have many side effects—some good, and some bad. For aging men using low t therapies for an increase in energy or to combat the effects of aging, testosterone can often help them feel better. But this youthful energy comes with health risks. Testosterone can increase the production of certain lipids—or fats—in the blood, which can slow blood flow and constrict blood vessels. It may also contribute to a higher number of red blood cells, leading to clumping. Clumped cells create clots, and these clots can become dangerous if the body doesn’t dissolve them on their own. Testosterone blood clots can travel to the legs, the lungs, or even the heart, and cause severe health complications.
FDA Testosterone Intervention
As the potential negative side effects of testosterone became more prevalent in patients—from the thousands of cases and hospitalizations that have occurred after off-label use—the FDA reported that they were looking into making some changes. First, the announced that they were requiring label changes to testosterone products to include clarifying language and warnings for consumers. These new labels state low t therapy isn’t approve to treat low testosterone due to aging. The FDA also mandated that manufacturers include low testosterone blood clot and stroke warnings for consumers as well as doctors.
Despite these concerns, however, doctors are still free to prescribe low-t therapy products off-label. And many consumers remain unaware of low t therapy’s many cardiovascular health risks. In fact, spreading awareness about these potential health concerns may help ensure men don’t use low-t drugs in high-risk situations. And despite the unfettered youth they seem to provide, patients need to be warned of the potential health risks from low t therapies.
AndroGel Testosterone Verdicts Award Nearly $300 Million to Victims
In July, a Chicago jury awarded AndroGel victim Jesse Mitchell $150 million in punitive damages. Then in October, a second AndroGel bellwether trial netted plaintiff Jeffrey Konrad $140,000 in compensatory and $140MM in punitive damages. Altogether, manufacturer AbbVie agreed to pay nearly $300 million to settle both men’s claims. Both plaintiffs suffered heart attacks shortly after starting low testosterone treatment with AndroGel.
Studies Find No Benefit for Men Taking Low Testosterone to Combat Aging
Recent studies show absolutely no benefit whatsoever for men taking low T therapies to fight aging’s effects. However, manufacturers like AbbVie heavily marketed testosterone products to aging men looking to improve mood, revive their libido and increase energy levels.
What Testosterone Therapy Victims Can Do
If you experienced heart problems with low-T therapy, we can help you get compensated for medical expenses and lost wages.
To see if you may have an eligible claim, fill out your free low testosterone case review today. Once you’ve submitted your information, an experienced mass tort lawyer will call you to schedule a free consultation. If you’re eligible for a cash settlement, your lawyer will explain your compensation options and next steps during your face-to-face meeting.
Lori Polemenakos is Director of Consumer Content and SEO strategist for LeadingResponse, a legal marketing company. An award-winning journalist, writer and editor based in Dallas, Texas, she's produced articles for major brands such as Match.com, Yahoo!, MSN, AOL, Xfinity, Mail.com, and edited several published books. Since 2016, she's published hundreds of articles about Social Security disability, workers' compensation, veterans' benefits, personal injury, mass tort, auto accident claims, bankruptcy, employment law and other related legal issues.