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Kidney Week

Abstract: PO2285

Effect of Serum Testosterone on Kidney Function in Men and Women from the General Population

Session Information

Category: CKD (Non-Dialysis)

  • 2101 CKD (Non-Dialysis): Epidemiology, Risk Factors, and Prevention


  • van der Burgh, Anna C., Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands
  • Neggers, S.J.C.M.M., Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands
  • Aribas, Elif, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands
  • Ikram, M. Arfan, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands
  • Kavousi, Maryam, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands
  • Hoorn, Ewout J., Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands
  • Chaker, Layal, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Testosterone may prevent kidney function decline, but at population level evidence is sparse in males, and even lacking in females. Therefore, we investigated the association between serum testosterone and kidney function in males and females from a large population-based cohort study.


Linear regression and linear mixed models were used to assess the associations of serum free and total testosterone with kidney function, including baseline assessments of estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) based on serum creatinine (eGFRcreat) or serum cystatin C (eGFRcys), and the urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio (ACR), and repeated assessments of eGFRcreat. Betas with their 95% confidence intervals (CI) were reported per 1 nmol/L increase in testosterone. Analyses were conducted for males and females separately.


Our study population comprised 9,484 participants (mean age 65.2 years). In males (n=4,162), higher free testosterone was associated with lower eGFRcreat (beta -0.63, 95% CI -1.05;-0.21), but higher eGFRcys (beta 0.56, 95% CI 0.07;1.05), and lower ACR (beta -0.25, 95% CI -0.35;-0.16) at baseline. Higher total testosterone was associated with higher eGFRcreat at baseline and over time, but with lower eGFRcreat when additionally adjusted for sex hormone-binding globulin. In females (n=5,449), higher free testosterone was associated with lower eGFRcreat and eGFRcys at baseline (beta -1.03, 95% CI -1.36;-0.71, beta -1.07, 95%CI -1.44;-0.70) and lower eGFRcreat over time (beta -0.78, 95% CI -1.10;-0.46), but not with ACR. Similar results were obtained with total testosterone.


The association between serum testosterone and kidney function is sex-dependent, with a positive association in males and a negative association in females. The discrepant results with eGFRcreat in males may be explained by the effect of testosterone on muscle mass. Whether treatment with testosterone replacement therapy may be beneficial for kidney function in males with low serum testosterone still needs to be investigated. The association between testosterone and lower eGFR in females requires further study.