Original Research

Deficient testosterone levels in men above 45 years with major depressive disorder - an age-matched case control study

A M Dikobe, C W van Staden, S Reif, M Bornman
South African Journal of Psychiatry | Vol 13, No 3 | a21 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajpsychiatry.v13i3.21 | © 2007 A M Dikobe, C W van Staden, S Reif, M Bornman | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 02 October 2007 | Published: 01 August 2007

About the author(s)

A M Dikobe, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pretoria, South Africa
C W van Staden, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pretoria, South Africa
S Reif, Department of Urology, University of Pretoria, South Africa
M Bornman, Department of Physiology, University of Pretoria

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Abstract

Background. Symptoms of partial androgen deficiency in ageing men (PADAM) overlap considerably with those of major depressive disorder. The relationship between these conditions is complicated by the usual age-related decline in serum testosterone concentrations.

Objectives. To test the hypothesis that depressed men above 45 years of age have lower serum testosterone concentrations than age-matched controls.

Method. Serum testosterone fractions of 20 men above the age of 45 years suffering from a major depressive disorder were compared with those of 20 healthy men. An age-matched controlled design was used to account for the usual age-related decline in serum testosterone concentrations.

Results. Testosterone concentrations of men suffering from a major depressive disorder were statistically significantly lower than those of an age-matched control group without depression. Conclusion. The role of testosterone deficiency in depressed men needs to be examined further in order for appropriate treatment options to be developed.


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