Variation in Testosterone Levels and Health-related Quality of Life in Men Diagnosed With Prostate Cancer on Active Surveillance

Andrew Cohen, Brittany Lapin, Chi H. Wang, Brian Helfand, David Victorson, Kristian Novakovic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Objective To determine the extent to which low testosterone levels impact health-related quality of life in patients undergoing active surveillance (AS) for prostate cancer. Materials and Methods Eligible AS patients were grouped as having low, low-normal, or normal testosterone levels (<300 vs 300-400 vs ≥400 ng/dL). Patients were surveyed with the Expanded Prostate Cancer Index Composite-26 (EPIC-26), Patient Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS), Memorial Anxiety Scale for Prostate Cancer, and treatment outlook satisfaction questions at enrollment and successively during follow-up. Results The cohort consisted of 223 patients, 74 (33%) of which had low testosterone levels. The mean age was 66.8 ± 7.2 years, with 85% being Caucasian. Mean prostate-specific antigen did not differ between groups. Obesity was significantly higher for men with low testosterone levels (P < .01). All PROMIS-Global items were comparatively lower in men with lower testosterone. EPIC-26 scores for the sexual domain were worse in men with lower testosterone. After age and obesity adjustment, men with normal testosterone levels had significantly better PROMIS Physical, Overall, and Mental Health, EPIC-26 Hormonal, and treatment satisfaction responses when compared to those patients with low testosterone levels. Those with normal testosterone levels reported hormonal EPIC-26 domain responses 65% higher than for those with low testosterone, and 12% higher treatment satisfaction during 2-year follow-up when corrected for age and obesity (P < .05). Conclusion Men with testosterone levels ≥400 ng/dL reported some improved measures of health-related quality of life including greater satisfaction with treatment outcome. These findings are hypothesis generating in the controversial area of exogenous testosterone administration in men on AS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)180-187
Number of pages8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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