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Narcotic-Induced Hypogonadism During Therapy for Heroin Addiction

Narcotic-Induced Hypogonadism During Therapy for Heroin Addiction

  1. Anonymous
    Harry W. Daniell, MD, FACP
    Journal of Addictive Diseases 21: 4, 47 — 53

    ABSTRACT. Many patients receiving sustained-action narcotics during therapy for heroin addiction have symptoms of fatigue, depression, diminished libido, and impaired sexual function. They are rarely, however, evaluated for narcotic-induced hypogonadism, or treated with sex-hormone replacement. Studies are reviewed examining the influence of narcotic administration on sex-hormone levels. These document frequent, sometimes profound, deficiencies in many men and women treated with narcotics. We have documented improved quality of life during sex-hormone replacement therapy in patients with narcotic-induced hypogonadism, most of whom were receiving their narcotics for control of chronic pain. These studies suggest that similar hormone replacement therapy may assist patients receiving narcotics for treatment of heroin addiction.