Total serum testosterone estimation and ultrasonographic volumetric evaluation of testes in patients with alcoholic liver cirrhosis
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In the course of cirrhosis, a variety of disturbances of endocrine glands occur. Degenerative changes in the testes with atrophia and fibrosis of the glandular tissue are often found in men. Twenty-one males with compensated alcoholic liver cirrhosis were studied. The age ranged from 29 to 61 years (mean 47,1). Efficiency of the liver was evaluated according to Child classification. HBC (this needs to be spelled out in parenthesis) or HBV (Hepatitis B Virus) infections were excluded. Levels of serum testosterone were determined and the volume size of the testes was measured using 7,5 MHz sector probe, B&K Medical ultrasonograph, 3535 model. Volume size of the testes was measured in 22 healthy control volunteers, as well; age ranged from 25 to 66 years (mean-46,6). All patients were interviewed about sexual function, particularly possible erectile dysfunction using IIEF-5 questionnaire. The mean testosterone level was 8,89 umol/l (ranged: 7,4–10,9 umol/l) in the study patients [the normal range interval: 8,2–34,6 umol/l]. The level was below the normal range in 4 patients, and low but within the normal range in the remaining patients. Statistically significant lower values of both testes volumes were estimated in patients with compensated alcoholic liver cirrhosis in comparison to healthy controls (p<0,001), however only 5 (23,81 %) study group subjects admitted impaired libido and erectile dysfunction. Decreased levels of testosterone in the peripheral blood and diminished volume size of testes are found in patients suffering from alcoholic liver cirrhosis. Erectile dysfunction in patients with liver cirrhosis needs further evaluation.
KeywordsLiver Testes Liver cirrhosis Alcoholism Testosterone Ultrasonography
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