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Obesity and male hypogonadism: Tales of a vicious cycle

29 Apr 2019

Summary

Obesity prevalence, particularly in children and young adults, is perilously increasing worldwide foreseeing serious negative health impacts in the future to come. Obesity is linked to impaired male gonadal function and is currently a major cause of hypogonadism. Besides signs and symptoms directly derived from decreased circulating testosterone levels, males with obesity also present poor fertility outcomes, further evidencing the parallelism between obesity and male reproductive function. In addition, males with androgen deficiency also exhibit increased fat accumulation and reduced muscle and mineral bone mass. Thus, compelling evidence highlights a vicious cycle where male hypogonadism can lead to increased adiposity, while obesity can be a cause for male hypogonadism. On the opposite direction, sustained weight loss can attain amelioration of male gonadal function. In this scenario, a thorough evaluation of gonadal function in men with obesity is crucial to dissect the causes from the consequences in order to target clinical interventions towards maximized improvement of reproductive health. This review will address the causes and consequences of the bidirectional relationship between obesity and hypogonadism, highlighting the implicit male reproductive repercussions.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in Obesity Reviews