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Sex hormones and coronary artery disease.

Chute CG, Baron JA, Plymate SR, Kiel DP, Pavia AT, Lozner EC, O'Keefe T, MacDonald GJ.

Department of Medicine, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Hanover, New Hampshire 03756.

Previous investigators have found an increased risk of coronary heart disease in men with high levels of circulating estrogens. To elucidate further this relationship, a case-control study of atherosclerotic coronary artery disease (ASCAD) and sex hormones was undertaken in male patients. Hormone levels in men with severe ASCAD documented at angiography were compared with those in men found to be virtually free from disease and with those in a group of control subjects without signs or symptoms of ASCAD. Significantly lower total testosterone levels were observed among men with severe ASCAD compared with either control group; the free testosterone level was significantly lower than in angiographically disease-free control subjects. The same pattern of hormone levels persisted after control of covariates. Epidemiologic analysis demonstrated a fivefold decrease in risk for severe ASCAD between the lowest and the highest quartile of total testosterone. No overall pattern of association was seen between ASCAD and free or total estrogens.

PMID: 3674092 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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