It is possible that testosterone does not stimulate intimate life as much as is commonly believed. As one of the latest studies shows, older men with slightly lower testosterone levels did not feel increased sexual desire and improved quality of sexual relations after taking steroids. During the study, about 150 men 60 years and older took testosterone supplements (steroids) daily, while the other 150 received placebo. On average, their testosterone levels at the start of the study were just over 300 nanograms per deciliter. This is approximately the lower limit of the norm.
Three years later, no difference was found between the groups in relation to men assessing their level of sexual desire, erectile function and quality of sexual intercourse. According to the researchers, despite the fact that men from the group taking steroids did talk about somewhat greater satisfaction from sexual intercourse, the effect was small and could be accidental. These findings are consistent with previous studies, which also suggest that men with low (normal) testosterone levels do not feel any improvement in sexual function after taking steroids.
Dr. Elizabeth Cavalier, a urologist at Lenox Hill Hospital who did not participate in the study, says that taking steroids may be useful to men who have lower levels of it than those studied — from 150 to 300 nanograms per deciliter. But "on top of this, he can do little to help, " she says. Despite the confidence of some men that testosterone supplements will make them stronger or more courageous, “feeding men with testosterone does not mean returning them to youth, ” Cavalier told Live Science. “The men participating in the experiment did not necessarily have any symptoms of decreased libido, so doctors would hardly have expected their libido to increase, ” she explained.
It is important to note that sexual function was not the main goal of the study, which somewhat limits the scientific reliability of the discovery. The study was aimed more likely to establish whether steroids affect the development of atherosclerosis - thickening and hardening of the walls of arteries. Despite the fact that previously medical scientists suggested that steroids may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease in men, there were no differences in the rate of development of atherosclerosis between the groups.
The described study, conducted by scientists from Harvard Medical School, was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.