Background: there is an overt bias between cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in male and female patients. Research of the past decades postulated that this difference could be due to the lipid-lowering effect of male sexual-steroids, that show decreased values in cardiovascular disease.
Methods: the aim of our study was to determine total serum testosterone and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S) on a peripheral arterial disease patient’s cohort (n=35), in comparison with a healthy control group, (n=23) and to establish correlations with other biological risk factors like serum lipids, C-reactive protein, plasma fibrinogen, and the ankle-brachial pressure index.
Results: our results showed that total serum testosterone and DHEA-S were significantly decreased in PAD patients in comparison to the control group. We could not observe any significant correlation with the presence of critical ischemia, the levels of total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, triglycerides, lipoprotein (a), C-reactive protein or plasma fibrinogen.
Conclusion: these results express that low androgen levels could be implicated in the pathogenesis of peripheral arterial disease, but testosterone and DHEA-S are not markers of disease severity. The elucidation of their exact role needs larger, population-based studies.