Use of testosterone, especially without a physician’s guidance, is attended by high risks of developing heart problems, high blood pressure, heart failure and heart attack. The Mayo Clinic reported testosterone supplement may lead to polycythemia, an overproduction of red blood cells that thickens the blood, leading to blood clots, including thrombophlebitis (inflammation of the leg veins, leading to clots which could travel to the lungs—pulmonary embolus—to cause death). The cholesterol also shoots usp, especially the bad variety. Anemia, acne, clotting problems, and sleep apnea are seen among those who take testosterone supplements for some time. ADVERTISEMENT
Testosterone, like many anabolic steroids, was classified as a controlled substance in 1991. Testosterone is administered parenterally in normal and delayed-release (depot) forms. In September 1995, the FDA approved testosterone transdermal patches (Androderm), and many transdermal forms and brands are now available including implants, gels, and topical solutions. A testosterone buccal system, Striant, was FDA-approved in July 2003; Striant is a mucoadhesive product that adheres to the buccal mucosa and provides a controlled and sustained release of testosterone. In May 2014, the FDA approved an intranasal gel formulation of testosterone (Natesto). A transdermal patch (Intrinsa) for hormone replacement in women is under investigation; the daily dosages used in women are much lower than for products used in males. The FDA refused approval for Intrinsa in 2004 stating that more data regarding safety, especially in relation to cardiovascular and breast health, were required.