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Endocrine Society calls for clinical guidelines on androgens for women

one patch that is being reviewed by the FDA this week would be designated specifically for women who have undergone a hysterectomy and are taking estrogen therapy. However, future research is needed to better understand how this therapy will impact other populations of women.

"The new testosterone treatment will potentially benefit a specific population of women with sexual dysfunction. However, it is not clear how effective this new therapy will be in the majority of women who suffer from this condition," comments Society President-Elect, Andrea Dunaif, M.D. "The process of female sexual arousal is quite complex. As a result, we need additional research to determine the best ways for doctors to treat female patients who suffer from sexual dysfunction."

If approved for use by the FDA, Intrinsa would be the first drug approved for women's sexual needs.

--Androgen Therapy in Women--

Several clinical trials have already examined the efficacy of androgen therapy in women. Preliminary results suggest that this treatment is effective in certain women, primarily when testosterone is administered at doses that raise free testosterone to the upper limits of normal. Free testosterone is that which circulates freely in the blood and is not bound to proteins.

According to Margaret Wierman, M.D., a Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, "testosterone therapy increases libido, or sexual desire in some women. Mood and quality of life have also improved, as has bone mineral density."

Leading experts note that considerations related to androgen therapy in women include the type of treatment, risks and clinical monitoring of responses. While women have previously been prescribed testosterone in several forms including oral, buccal, transdermal and injectable, prior research on testosterone therapy in women has been done with pharmacological doses.

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2-Dec-2004


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