The Harm of Oversimplifying Low Testosterone

Published on May 20, 2015 by

As Albert Einstein once said, "Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler." When problems are made out to be simpler than they actually are, false conclusions are inevitable.

Critics suggest that the oversimplification of the Low T problem began with the publication of "The He Hormone," an article in a 2004 issue of The New York Times Magazine. In this influential piece, author Andrew Sullivan discusses his own battle with low testosterone problems. Sullivan, who is HIV positive, had been taking anti-HIV medications for many years. According to Sullivan, his testosterone levels had dropped lower than the levels of the average male child. In hopes of reducing his symptoms, he started taking testosterone supplements.

Sullivan believes that testosterone supplements improved his quality of life. He continues to take these supplements today, and he recently said "I have energy, I am leaner and have more muscle mass, and I am motivated to work out and can sustain focus."

Upon reading this article -- or after hearing other anecdotes about the benefits of testosterone therapy -- many people might be tempted to draw the conclusion that low testosterone leads to a host of health problems that can be solved by simply adding testosterone to the body. Although this may seem like a theory based on common sense, it depends on the following dangerous assumptions:

  • It assumes that testosterone levels have a direct effect on a man's health.
  • It assumes that testosterone therapy will work for all men.
  • It assumes that, because testosterone therapy improves testosterone levels, it must be safe for the rest of the body as well.

However, none of these assumptions is based on scientific evidence. Just because Sullivan (and many others) have attributed improvement in symptoms to testosterone supplements does not necessarily mean that these drugs will help all men suffering from Low T or that the treatment is safe. Likewise, the relationship between testosterone and overall health is complex and multifaceted.


Anecdotal reports of the benefits of any drug are not a substitute for valid scientific studies. In order to explore and quantify the relationship between Low T and testosterone supplementation, years of careful, well-planned research is required. So what research along those lines has been done, and what can it tell us? We will discuss this in our next blog post.

This blog does not constitute medical or legal advice.

If you believe you may be experiencing symptoms related to the use of Low T drugs, talk to your doctor about your symptoms as soon as possible.

If you would like to explore the possibility of bringing legal action to obtain compensation for medical problems, deaths or other issues related to Low T medications, please contact the experienced attorneys at Marc Whitehead & Associates, LLP at (855)-423-3666 to discuss your options.

For more information regarding the use of Low T drugs, please visit and download a copy of our free E-book, The Fall of Testosterone: How a Vaunted “Low T” Therapy Has Backfired and Put Millions of Men at Risk for Heart Problems and Stroke.