Testosterone Replacement for the Aging Athlete

Testosterone (T) is a naturally occurring hormone that is responsible in part for gaining muscle mass and strength, increasing endurance and faster recovery from intense exercise, reducing body fat, promoting healthy bone density, and many other mental and sexual benefits. The psychological benefits of testosterone such as a reduced response to startle stimuli, reduced perception of negative emotion, and an enhanced response to social threats are thought to provide a competitive advantage to athletes. Testosterone levels decrease with normal aging beginning around age 40, leaving many ageing athletes feeling signs and symptoms of low testosterone such as lower sex drive and sense of vitality, erectile dysfunction, decreased energy, reduced muscle mass and bone density.

Supplemental testosterone is associated with an increase in mood, sexual function, and athletic performance. The Endocrine Society recommends testing for low T in people who are experiencing depressed moods, sleep disturbances, increased body fat, and diminished physical performance, among other symptoms. Testosterone replacement is available in many different forms including injections and topical gels and dosing schedules such as daily or weekly. There are potential risks to using testosterone supplements. Some areas of concern are the development of breast tissue in men, prostate enlargement or cancer, and fluid retention. Your risk factors must be discussed carefully with your physician prior to deciding to begin Te replacement therapy

Low testosterone is a common, yet underdiagnosed problem, in the United States. Contact Scottsdale Sports Medicine Institute today at (480) 664-4615 to discuss testosterone testing and therapy.


Bhasin, S., Cunningham, G. R., Hayes, F. J., Matsumoto, A. M., Snyder, P. J., Swerdloff, R. S., & Montori, V. M. (2010). Testosterone therapy in men with androgen deficiency syndromes: An endocrine society clinical practice guideline. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, 95(6). Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/jcem/article-lookup/doi/10.1210/jc.2009-2354

Tokish, J. M., & DeRosa, D. C. (2014). Pharmacologic Approaches to the Aging Athlete. Sports Health, 6(1), 49–55. http://doi.org/10.1177/1941738113512782

Vanni, P. J., & Moon, J. (2015). Physiological and psycological of testestorone on sport performance: A critical review of literature. The Sport Journal. Retrieved from http://thesportjournal.org/article/physiological-and-psychological-effects-of-testosterone-on-sport-performance-a-critical-review-of-literature/

Wood, R. I. & Stanton, S. J. (2012). Testosterone and sport: Current perspectives. Horm Behav, 61(1), 147-155. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.yhbeh.2011.09.010