Therapeutic potential of testosterone gels

Bruno Lunenfeld, Michael Oettel

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


A large number of men over 60 years of age have low bioavailable of free testosterone levels and symptoms of testosterone deficiency. These symptoms include loss of energy, depressed mood, decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, decreased muscle mass and strength, increased fat mass, frailty, osteopenia and osteoporosis. Clinical trials indicate that testosterone therapy can improve many of these findings. In the past, androgen use in clinical practice was impeded or limited, since efficient oral or parental administration of testosterone was impossible. The introduction of modern transdermal testosterone-delivery systems has changed this situation fundamentally. Its clinical efficacy in reversing symptoms of hypogonadism has been demonstrated. The main advantage of the transdermal testosterone gel is easy handling or applicability, lack of visibility, flexibility in dosing and the low rate of minimal skin irritation resulting in good compliance. Current experiences suggest that testosterone gel may be the most physiological and well-tolerated transdermal testosterone-delivery system yet. Application of the gel is simple, practicable for the patient and replaces painful intramuscular injections. Owing to the short action of testosterone gel, application can be ceased in case of the appearance of side effects, such as an excessive increase in hematocrit, prostate-specific antigen or an abnormal digital rectal examination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)227-245
Number of pages19
JournalAging Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Body composition
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Hypogonadism
  • Late-onset hypogonadism
  • Libido
  • Osteopenia
  • Testosterone deficiency
  • Testosterone gels
  • Testosterone therapy


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