A new study conducted by a team of Chinese researchers has suggested that coronavirus could affect the potency of males. Scientists who took part in this study made this conclusion after noticing dropped levels of testosterone among men who are infected with COVID-19.
Details of the new research
During the study, researchers analyzed testosterone levels of 81 men who are affected with coronavirus100 and later compared these results with 100 age-match healthy men who are not infected with COVID-19. Even though researchers noted a rise in serum luteinizing hormone (LH), the ratio of testosterone to LH and the ratio of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) to LH were found less among men infected with coronavirus.
"There is no clinical evidence about whether SARS-CoV-2 infection can affect male gonadal function so far. This study provides the first direct evidence about the influence of medical condition of COVID-19 on male sex hormones, alerting more attention to gonadal function evaluation among patients recovered from SARS-CoV-2 infection, especially the reproductive-aged men," wrote the researchers in the study report which is now published in the pre-print journal medRxiv.
It should be noted that this study is still in its pre-print stage, and it has not been peer-reviewed by experts.
In the male body, testosterone plays a crucial role in regulating sex drive (libido), and medical experts believe that low testosterone levels on coronavirus patients could affect the potency of these people. It is still unclear whether testosterone levels will return back to normal when the patient gets recovered from the coronavirus infection.
Testicles make men more vulnerable to coronavirus
A few days back, another study report had revealed that COVID-19 could linger in the testicles of men, making them prone to longer and severe cases of infection. After analyzing 68 coronavirus patients in Mumbai, researchers suggested that coronavirus has taken a worse toll on men, and one of the primary reasons could be the testicles present in their body.
Researchers revealed that coronavirus usually attaches itself to a protein that occurs in high levels in the testicles. Even though this protein named angiotensin-converting enzyme 2, or ACE2 is present in the lungs and gastrointestinal tract, it is often found in large quantities in the testicles.
As testicles are walled off from the human body's immune system, the coronavirus could stay longer in this region, and as a result, men will find it harder to recover from the illness.
[DISCLAIMER: This report is based on a research paper in its preprint version and has not been peer-reviewed. It reports new medical research that has yet to be evaluated and so should not be used to guide clinical practice.]