Testosterone applied to the skin has been demonstrated to improve sex drive in women. However, there has been uncertainty about the optimal dose—one that works well without unacceptable side effects.
A study in the journal Menopause, published online in August, may fill that void. Researchers in Australia tested both 5-mg and 10-mg doses of a standardized 1% testosterone cream in seven healthy postmenopausal women with imperceptible blood levels of testosterone. They found that applying the 5-mg dose to the upper arm daily for six weeks brought testosterone levels back into the normal premenopausal range, while using the 10-mg dose elevated levels above the premenopausal range. Neither dose was associated with masculinizing side effects.
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles.
No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.