Testosterone Therapy And Drug Interactions
Testosterone is known to interact with 114 drugs. To put this in perspective, aspirin interacts with 469 drugs and has 76 major drug interactions. Testosterone, in contrast, has just seven major drug interactions.
The majority of medications known to interact with testosterone include other hormone-like chemicals, such as prednisolone, a synthetic adrenal coticosteroid used to treat arthritis and asthma, and corticotropin, a synthetic hormone used to treat allergy symptoms and ulcerative colitis. Testosterone can also have moderate interactions with drugs used to treat HIV and thyroid conditions. In most patients, these interactions are easily managed by adjusting dosages.
Only seven drugs have clinically significant interactions with testosterone. Of these, three are anticoagulants, two are used to treat anti-immune disorders (rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis), and two are used to treat a relatively rare genetic disorder known as HoHF. They include:
- Anisindione – a synthetic anticoagulant, which is sold under the brand name Miradon. Using anisindione together with testosterone may cause you to bleed and bruise more easily and can require a dose adjustment or change in medications.
- Dicumarol – an oral anticoagulant which may interact with testosterone to increase the risk of bleeding and bruising
- Warfarin – an anticoagulant with the trade name Coumadin, this drug is known to interact with more than 200 medications, including testosterone. When used with testosterone therapy. more frequent monitoring may be required.
- Leflunomide – sold under brand name Arava, this drug is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis and may cause liver problems. Taking it with other medications, including testosterone, can increase that risk. You may need more frequent monitoring in order to safely take leflunomide with testosterone.
- Terifunomide – under the trade name Aubagio, this is an active metabolite of leflunomide which is used an experimental drug treatment for relapsing multiple sclerosis. It may cause liver problems and taking it with other medications can increase that risk.
- Lomitapide – sold under the brand name Juxtapid, this drug is relatively new medication approved for use in patients with HoFH, a rare genetic disorder that causes abnormally high levels of LDL cholesterol. It has a serious risk of liver toxicity and must be carefully monitored when used with any medications, including testosterone.
- Mipomerson – Known under brand name Kynamro, this is an injectable dug available through a restricted program to treat HoFH and has a high risk of liver toxicity, whether used alone or in combination with other drugs.
Doctors who are experienced in prescribing testosterone therapy understand how it works in relation to your overall medical profile. You testosterone-therapy doctor will adjust your treatment based on any other medications you use, including vitamins and herbs. If you have chronic conditions, a reputable anti-aging clinic or specialized medical practice will consult with your other treating physicians. Be sure your physician outlines any possible drug interactions and talks to you about the need for more frequent monitoring if you take anticoagulants, hormone-like drugs, or medications that affect your immune system.