Androgel: Indications, Dosage, Precautions, Adverse Effects
Россия
  • Россия
  • Украина

Androgel - Product Information

Manufacture: Abbott
Country: Canada
Condition: Hypogonadism, Male, Hypogonadism
Class: Androgens and anabolic steroids
Form: Cream, gel, liniment or balm, lotion, ointment, etc
Ingredients: testosterone, alcohol, purified water, sodium hydroxide, Carbopol 980, isopropyl myristate

ANDROGEL

Testosterone gel

1%

Summary Product Information

Route of
Administration
Dosage Form /
Strength
Clinically Relevant Non-medicinal
Ingredients
Topical 1% gel Alcohol
For a complete listing see Dosage Forms,
Composition and Packaging Section

Indications and Clinical Use

ANDROGEL is indicated for testosterone replacement therapy in adult males for conditions associated with a deficiency or absence of endogenous testosterone (hypogonadism).

ANDROGEL should not be used to treat non-specific symptoms suggestive of hypogonadism if testosterone deficiency has not been demonstrated and if other etiologies responsible for the symptoms have not been excluded. Testosterone deficiency should be clearly demonstrated by clinical features and confirmed by biochemical assays (Endocrine Society Guidelines recommend two separate tests preferably in the morning) before initiating therapy with any testosterone replacement, including ANDROGEL treatment. Due to variability in laboratory values, all measures of testosterone should be carried out in the same laboratory.

Geriatrics (>65 years of age)

There are limited controlled clinical study data supporting the use of ANDROGEL in the geriatric population (see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS and CLINICAL TRIALS).

Pediatrics (<18 years of age)

ANDROGEL is not indicated for use in children < 18 years of age since safety and efficacy have not been established in this patient population (see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS — Special Populations).

Contraindications

  • ANDROGEL is not indicated for use in women.
  • Pregnant and nursing women should avoid skin contact with ANDROGEL application sites on men. Testosterone may cause fetal harm. Testosterone exposure during pregnancy has been reported to be associated with fetal abnormalities (see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS — Potential for Secondary Exposure to Testosterone and Special Populations). In the event that unwashed or unclothed skin to which ANDROGEL has been applied or clothing exposed to ANDROGEL comes in direct contact with the skin of a pregnant or nursing woman, the general area of contact on the woman should be immediately washed with soap and water.
  • Androgens are contraindicated in men with known or suspected carcinoma of the prostate or breast.
  • ANDROGEL should not be used in patients with known hypersensitivity to any of its ingredients, including testosterone USP that is chemically synthesized from soy. For a complete listing, see Dosage Forms. Composition and Packaging section of the product monograph.

Warnings and Precautions

Serious Warnings and Precautions

SECONDARY EXPOSURE TO TESTOSTERONE

  • Virilization has been reported in children who were secondarily exposed to testosterone gel, including ANDROGEL.
  • Children should avoid contact with unwashed or unclothed application sites in men using ANDROGEL.
  • Healthcare providers should advise patients to strictly adhere to recommended instructions for use.

(See WARNINGS and PRECAUTIONS-Potential for Secondary Exposure to Testosterone, Strict adherence to the following precautions is advised in order to minimize the potential for secondary exposure to testosterone from ANDROGEL-treated skin).

Potential for Secondary Exposure to Testosterone

Secondary exposure to testosterone in children and women can occur with testosterone gel use in men. Cases of secondary exposure resulting in virilization of children have been reported in postmarketing surveillance. Signs and symptoms have included enlargement of the penis or clitoris, development of pubic hair, increased erections and libido, aggressive behavior, and advanced bone age. In most cases, these signs and symptoms regressed with removal of the exposure to testosterone gel. In a few cases, however, enlarged genitalia did not fully return to age-appropriate normal size, and bone age remained modestly greater than chronological age. The risk of transfer was increased in some of these cases by not adhering to precautions for the appropriate use of testosterone gel.

Inappropriate changes in genital size or development of pubic hair or libido in children, or changes in body hair distribution, significant increase in acne, or other signs of virilization in adult women should be brought to the attention of a physician and the possibility of secondary exposure to testosterone gel should also be brought to the attention of a physician. Testosterone gel should be promptly discontinued until the cause of virilization has been identified.

Strict adherence to the following precautions is advised in order to minimize the potential for secondary exposure to testosterone from ANDROGEL-treated skin:

  • Children and women should avoid contact with unwashed or unclothed application site(s) of men using testosterone gel.
  • ANDROGEL should only be applied to the shoulders, upper arms, and/ or abdomen (area of application should be limited to the area that will be covered by the patient’s short sleeve t-shirt); when a shirt is used to cover the application site(s), the transfer of ANDROGEL from the male to the female partner can be completely prevented.
  • Patients should wash their hands immediately with soap and water after applying ANDROGEL.
  • Patients should cover the application site(s) with clothing (e.g., a shirt) after the gel has dried.
  • Prior to any situation in which skin-to-skin contact with the application site is anticipated, patients should wash the application site(s) thoroughly with soap and water to remove any testosterone residue.
  • In the events that unwashed or unclothed skin to which ANDROGEL has been applied and/or that the testosterone gel user’s unwashed shirts and/ or other fabrics (such as towels and sheets) come in direct contact with the skin of another person, the general area of contact on the other person should be washed with soap and water as soon as possible. Studies show that residual testosterone is removed from the skin surface by washing with soap and water.

General

There is very limited data from clinical trials with ANDROGEL in the geriatric male (>65 years of age) to support the efficacy and safety of prolonged use. Impacts to prostate and cardiovascular event rates and patient important outcomes are unknown.

ANDROGEL should not be used to improve body composition, bone and muscle mass, increase lean body mass and decrease total fat mass. Efficacy and safety have not been established.

Serious long term deleterious health issues may arise.

ANDROGEL has not been shown to be safe and effective for the enhancement of athletic performance. Because of the potential risk of serious adverse health effects, this drug should not be used for such purpose.

If testosterone deficiency has not been established, testosterone replacement therapy should not be used for the treatment of sexual dysfunction.

Testosterone replacement therapy is not a treatment for male infertility.

Gels are flammable. Following application of ANDROGEL (testosterone gel), allow gel to dry completely before smoking or going near an open flame.

Special Populations

Pregnant Women and Nursing Women

ANDROGEL is not indicated for use in women, due to lack of evaluation and possible virilising effects (see CONTRAINDICATIONS).

Although it is not known how much testosterone transfers into human milk, ANDROGEL is contraindicated in nursing women because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants. (see CONTRAINDICATIONS).

Pregnant and nursing women should avoid skin contact with ANDROGEL application sites on men. Testosterone is teratogenic and may cause fetal harm. Testosterone exposure during pregnancy has been reported to be associated with fetal abnormalities. In the event that unwashed or unclothed skin to which ANDROGEL has been applied or clothing exposed to ANDROGEL comes in direct contact with the skin of a pregnant or nursing woman, the general area of contact on the woman should be immediately washed with soap and water (see CONTRAINDICATIONS).

Pediatrics (<18 years of age)

ANDROGEL is not indicated for use in children < 18 years of age since safety and efficacy have not been established in this patient population.

Androgen therapy should be used cautiously in males with hypogonadism causing delayed puberty. Androgens can accelerate bone maturation without producing compensatory gain in linear growth. This adverse effect may result in compromised adult stature. The younger the child is the greater risk of compromising final mature height. The effect of androgens on bone maturation should be monitored closely by assessing bone age of the wrist and hand on a regular basis.

Geriatrics (> 65 years of age)

There are very limited controlled clinical study data supporting the use of testosterone in the geriatric population and virtually no controlled clinical studies on subjects 75 years and over.

Geriatric patients treated with androgens may be at an increased risk for the development of prostatic hyperplasia and prostatic carcinoma and for worsening of lower urinary tract signs and symptoms.

Geriatric patients and other patients with clinical or demographic characteristics that are recognized to be associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer should be evaluated for the presence of prostate cancer prior to initiation of testosterone replacement therapy.

Carcinogenesis

Prostatic

Androgens may accelerate the progression of sub-clinical prostatic cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). In men receiving testosterone replacement therapy, careful and regular monitoring of the prostate gland should be consistent with current practices for eugonadal men. Prior to testosterone initiation, at risk patients (those with clinical and familial factors) should be identified and all patients must undergo a detailed examination in order to detect preexisting prostatic cancer.

Geriatric patients treated with androgens may be at an increased risk for the development of prostatic hyperplasia and prostatic carcinoma (see Special Populations – Geriatrics).

Breast

Patients using long-term androgen therapy may be at an increased risk for the development of breast cancer. In men receiving testosterone replacement therapy, careful and regular monitoring of the breast should be conducted.

Hepatic

Prolonged use of high doses of orally active 17-alpha-alkyl androgens (e.g., methyltestosterone)has been associated with serious hepatic adverse effects (peliosis hepatis, hepatic neoplasms, cholestatic hepatitis, and jaundice). Peliosis hepatis can be a life-threatening or fatal complication. Long-term therapy with testosterone enanthate, which elevates blood levels for prolonged periods, has produced multiple hepatic adenomas. ANDROGEL is not known to produce these adverse effects.

Skeletal

Patients with skeletal metastases are at a risk of exacerbating hypercalcemia/ hypercalciuria with concomitant androgen therapy. Regular monitoring of serum calcium concentrations is recommended in these patients.

Cardiovascular

Testosterone may increase blood pressure and should be used with caution in patients with hypertension.

Androgens, including AndroGel 1%, may promote retention of sodium and water. Edema, with or without congestive heart failure, may be a serious complication in patients with pre-existing cardiac, renal, or hepatic disease. Diuretic therapy may be required, in addition to discontinuation of the drug.

Post-market studies suggest increased risk of serious cardiovascular events such as myocardial infarction stroke and venous thromboembolic events including deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism associated with testosterone therapy. Before starting testosterone therapy, patients should be assessed for any cardiovascular risk factors (e.g., existing ischaemic heart disease) or prior history of cardiovascular events (e.g., myocardial infarction, stroke, or heart failure). Patients should also be closely monitored for possible serious cardiovascular events while on testosterone therapy. If any of these serious adverse events are suspected, treatment with ANDROGEL should be discontinued and appropriate assessment and management initiated.

Dependence/tolerance

ANDROGEL contains testosterone, a Schedule G controlled substance as defined by the Food and Drugs Act.

Endocrine and Metabolism

Androgens have been shown to alter glucose tolerance tests. Diabetics should be followed carefully and the insulin or oral hypoglycemic dosage adjusted accordingly (see Drug-Drug Interactions).

Hypercalciuria/hypercalcemia (caused by malignant tumors) may be exacerbated by androgen treatment. Androgens should be used with caution in cancer patients at risk of hypercalcemia (and associated hypercalciuria). Regular monitoring of serum calcium concentrations is recommended in patients at risk of hypercalciuria/ hypercalcemia.

Hypercalcemia may occur in immobilized patients. If this occurs, the drug should be discontinued.

Hematologic

Hemoglobin and hematocrit levels should be checked periodically (to detect polycythemia) in patients on long-term androgen therapy (see Monitoring and Laboratory Tests).

Oral alkylated derivatives of testosterone such as methandrostenolone, have been reported to decrease the anticoagulant requirement of patients receiving oral anticoagulants (e.g. warfarin). Patients receiving oral anticoagulants therapy require close monitoring of international normalized ratio (INR) and prothrombin time, especially when androgens are started or stopped (see Drug-Drug Interactions).

Respiratory

The treatment of hypogonadal men with testosterone may potentiate sleep apnea, particularly for those with risk factors such as obesity or chronic lung diseases.

Sexual Function/Reproduction

Gynecomastia may frequently develop and occasionally persist in patients being treated for hypogonadism.

Priapism or excessive sexual stimulation may develop.

Oligospermia may occur after prolonged administration or excessive dosage through feedback inhibition of pituitary follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). (See ACTIONS & CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY: Pharmacodynamics – General Androgen Effects).

Skin

Changes in body hair distribution, significant increase in acne, or other signs of virilization of the female partner or in any person (including children) exposed to skin-to skin contact, should be brought to the attention of a physician.

Application site reactions associated with the use of transdermal testosterone may manifest as skin irritation (including erythema, induration or burning).

Monitoring and Laboratory Tests

The patient should be monitored (including serum testosterone levels) on a regular basis to ensure adequate response to treatment.

Currently there is no consensus about age specific testosterone levels. The normal serum testosterone level for young eugonadal men is generally accepted to be approximately 10.4-34.6 nmol/L (300-1000 ng/dL). However, it should be taken into account that physiologically testosterone levels (mean and range) decrease with increasing age. Men with levels below their laboratory’s reference range and who are experiencing symptoms are candidates for testosterone replacement therapy and should be evaluated as such.

The following laboratory tests, performed routinely, are recommended to ensure that adverse experience is detected and addressed:

  • Hemoglobin and hematocrit levels should be checked periodically (to detect polycythemia);
  • liver function tests, to detect hepatotoxicity associated with the use of androgens;
  • prostate specific antigen (PSA), Digital Rectal Examination (DRE), especially if the patient presents with progressive difficulty with urination or a change in voiding habits;
  • lipid profile, total cholesterol, LDL, HDL, and triglycerides;
  • Diabetics should be followed carefully and the insulin or oral hypoglycemic dosage adjusted accordingly (see Drug-Drug Interactions).

Dose adjustment or discontinuation until normalization of parameters might be necessary.

Adverse Reactions

Clinical Trial Adverse Drug Reactions

Because clinical trials are conducted under very specific conditions the adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials may not reflect the rates observed in practice and should not be compared to the rates in the clinical trials of another drug. Adverse drug reaction information from clinical trials is useful for identifying drug-related adverse events and for approximating rates.

In a controlled clinical study, 154 patients were treated with ANDROGEL (testosterone gel) for up to 6 months (see Clinical Studies). Adverse Events possibly, probably or definitely related to the use of ANDROGEL and reported by ≥1% of the patients are listed in Table 1. The four most reported adverse events are: acne (1-8%), lab test abnormal*(3-6%), application site reaction (3-5%), and prostate disorders** (3-5%).

Table 1: Adverse Events Possibly, Probably or Definitely Related to Use of ANDROGEL in the 180-Day Controlled Clinical Trial
Adverse Event 5 g
n = 77
7.5 g
n = 40
10 g
n = 78
Acne1%3%8%
Alopecia1%0%1%
Application Site Reaction5%3%4%
Asthenia0%3%1%
Depression1%0%1%
Emotional Lability0%3%3%
Gynecomastia1%0%3%
Headache4%3%0%
Hypertension3%0%3%
Lab Test Abnormal*6%5%3%
Libido Decreased0%3%1%
Nervousness0%3%1%
Pain Breast3%3%1%
Prostate Disorders**3%3%5%
Testis Disorder***3%0%0%

* Lab test abnormal occurred in nine patients with one or more of the following events: elevated hemoglobin or hematocrit, hyperlipidemia, elevated triglycerides, hypokalemia, decreased HDL, elevated glucose, elevated creatinine, or elevated total bilirubin.

** Prostate disorders included five patients with enlarged prostate, one patient with BPH, and one patient with elevated PSA (Prostatic Specific Antigen) results.

*** Testis disorders were reported from two patients: one patient with left varicocele and one patient with slight sensitivity of left testis.

Less Common Clinical Trial Adverse Drug Reactions (<1%):

Endocrine disorders Hirsutism
General Disorders and administration Peripheral edema
Genitourinary disorders Impaired urination
Nervous system disorders Dizziness
Psychiatric disorders Anxiety, hostility, amnesia
Reproductive system and breast disorders Penis disorder
Skin and subcutaneous tissue disorders Dry skin, discolored hair, sweating, paresthesia
Vascular disorders Vasodilation

The following adverse events possibly related to the use of ANDROGEL occurred in fewer than 1% of patients: amnesia, anxiety, discolored hair, dizziness, dry skin, hirsutism, hostility, impaired urination, paresthesia, penis disorder, peripheral edema, sweating, and vasodilation.

In this clinical trial of ANDROGEL, skin reactions at the site of application were occasionally reported with ANDROGEL, but none was severe enough to require treatment or discontinuation of drug. Six (4%) patients in this trial had adverse events that led to discontinuation of ANDROGEL. These events included the following: cerebral hemorrhage, convulsion (neither of which were considered related to ANDROGEL administration), depression, sadness, memory loss, elevated prostate specific antigen and hypertension. No ANDROGEL patients discontinued due to skin reactions.

In an uncontrolled pharmacokinetic study of 10 patients, two had adverse events associated with ANDROGEL; these were asthenia and depression in one patient and increased libido and hyperkinesia in the other. In further studies in 17 patients, there was one instance each of acne, erythema at the thoracic level and benign prostate adenoma associated with a 2.5% testosterone gel formulation applied dermally.

One hundred and sixty-two (162) patients have received ANDROGEL for up to 3 years in a long-term follow-up study for patients who completed the controlled clinical trial. Table 2 summarizes those adverse events possibly, probably or definitely related to the use of ANDROGEL and reported by 2 or more subjects in at least one treatment group during longterm exposure to ANDROGEL.

Table 2: Incidence of Treatment-Emergent Adverse Events Possibly, Probably or Definitely Related to the Use of ANDROGEL in the 3 Year Open-Label Extension Clinical Trial
Adverse Event Category/Classification Treatment Group
n = 162 (%)
Lab Test Abnormal * 15 (9.3)
Skin Dry 3 (1.9)
Application Site Reaction 9 (5.6)
Acne 5 (3.1)
Pruritus 3 (1.9)
Enlarged Prostate 19 (11.7)
Carcinoma of Prostate 2 (1.2)
Urinary symptoms ** 6 (3.7)
Gynecomastia 4 (2.5)
Testis Disorder *** 3 (1.9)
Anemia 4 (2.5)

* Lab test abnormal occurred in fifteen patients with one or more of the following events: elevated AST, elevated ALT, elevated testosterone, elevated hemoglobin or hematocrit, elevated cholesterol, elevated cholesterol/LDL ratio, elevated triglycerides, elevated HDL, or elevated serum creatinine.

**Urinary symptoms included nocturia, urinary hesitancy, urinary incontinence, urinary retention, urinary urgency and weak urinary stream.

***Testis disorder included three patients. There were two patients with a non-palpable testis and one patient with slight right testicular tenderness.

Two patients reported serious adverse events considered possibly related to treatment: deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and prostate disorder requiring a transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP). Nine patients discontinued treatment due to adverse events possibly related to treatment with ANDROGEL, including two patients with application site reactions, one with kidney failure, and five with prostate disorders (including increase in serum PSA in 4 patients and increase in PSA with prostate enlargement in a fifth patient). All patients who discontinued due to an increase in serum PSA did so by Day 357.

During the initial 6-month study, the mean change in PSA values had a statistically significant increase of 0.26 ng/mL. Serum PSA was measured every 6 months thereafter. While there were no statistically significant increases in mean PSA from 6 months through 36 months of ANDROGEL treatment for the overall group of 162 patients enrolled in the long-term extension study, there were increases in serum PSA seen in approximately 18% of individual patients. In the long-term extension study, the overall mean change from baseline in serum PSA values for the entire group was 0.11 ng/mL.

Twenty-nine (29) (18%) patients met the per-protocol criterion for increase in serum PSA value, defined as a value >2X the baseline value or any single absolute value >6 ng/mL. Twenty-five of these patients met this criterion by virtue of a post-baseline value at least twice the baseline value. In most of these cases (22/25), the maximum serum PSA value attained was <2 ng/mL. The first occurrence of a pre-specified, post-baseline increase in serum PSA was seen at or prior to Month 12 in most of the patients who met this criterion (23 of 29; 79%).

Four patients met this criterion by having a serum PSA >6 ng/mL and in these, maximum serum PSA values were 6.2 ng/mL, 6.6 ng/mL, 6.7 ng/mL, and 10.7 ng/mL (in ANDROGEL-treated patients). In two of these ANDROGEL-treated patients, prostate cancer was detected on biopsy. The first patient’s PSA levels were 4.7 ng/mL and 6.2 ng/mL at baseline and at Month 6/Final, respectively. The second patient’s PSA levels were 4.2 ng/mL, 5.2 ng/mL, 5.8 ng/mL, and 6.6 ng/mL at baseline, Month 6, Month 12, and Final, respectively.

Abnormal Hematologic and Clinical Chemistry Findings

Table 3: Laboratory test results of clinical concern appearing at Day 90 or Final visit but not Baseline
Day 90 Final Visit
Very low values Very high values Very low values Very high values
Lab source/ test Criteria for very low and very high
lab test results
T-Gel
50
T-Gel
100
T-
patch
T-Gel
50
T-Gel
100
T-
patch
T-Gel
50
T-Gel
75
T-Gel
100
T-
patch
T-Gel
50
T-Gel
75
T-Gel
100
T-
patch
CHEM
GlucoseVL: <=40;VH: >=1750 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)2 (3%)0 (0%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)2 (3%)1 (3%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
Potassium (K)VL: <=3;VH: >=60 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (1%)1 (1%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (3%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
Calcium (CA)VL: <=8.2;VH: >=121 (1%)1 (1%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)2 (5%)0 (0%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
Inorganic phosphorusVL: <=1.7;VH: >=91 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
AST (SGOT)VH: >=2.6 ULN0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
TriglyceridesVH: >=4500 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)2 (3%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (1%)1 (1%)
HEMA
WBCVL: <2.5;VH: >160 (0%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (1%)1 (3%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)
HemoglobinVL: <9.4;VH: >180 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (1%)3 (4%)0 (0%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (1%)1 (3%)1 (1%)1 (1%)
HematocritVL: <37;VH: >561 (1%)1 (1%)1 (1%)0 (0%)1 (1%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)3 (4%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (1%)0 (0%)
IMMU
Prostate specific antiVH: >5.50 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)0 (0%)1 (3%)0 (0%)0 (0%)

Only patients with lab test results meeting the criteria for Clinical Concern for the first time at Day 90 or Final visit are included in this table.

VL= Very Low lab test result, VH= Very High lab test result; ULN= Upper Limit of Normal.

Post-Market Adverse Drug Reactions

Secondary Exposure to Testosterone in Children

Cases of secondary exposure to testosterone resulting in virilization of children have been reported in postmarket surveillance. Signs and symptoms of these reported cases have included enlargement of the clitoris (with surgical intervention) or of the penis, premature development of pubic hair, increased erections and libido, aggressive behavior, and advanced bone age. In most cases with a reported outcome, these signs and symptoms were reported to have regressed with removal of the testosterone gel exposure. In a few cases, however, enlarged genitalia did not fully return to age appropriate normal size, and bone age remained modestly greater than chronological age. In some of the cases, direct contact with the sites of application on the skin of men using testosterone gel was reported. In at least one reported case, the reporter considered the possibility of secondary exposure from items such as the testosterone gel user’s shirts and/ or other fabric, such as towels and sheets (see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS).

In addition to those adverse events reported during clinical trials, the following adverse reactions have been identified during post-marketing use of ANDROGEL. Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure:

Table 4: Adverse Drug Reactions from Postmarketing experience of ANDROGEL and Known Reactions of General Testosterone Treatment
MedDRA System Organ Class (SOC) Adverse Drug Reaction
Blood and the lymphatic system disorders: Polycythemia, (elevated hemoglobin, hematocrit) erythropoiesis abnormal
Cardiovascular disorders: Tachycardia, atrial fibrillation, hypertension, vasodilation (hot flushes) and venous thromboembolism, including deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism.
Endocrine disorders: Abnormal accelerated growth Male pattern baldness, hirsuitism.
Gastrointestinal disorders: Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, gastrointestinal bleeding.
General disorders and administration site
conditions:
Edema, malaise, asthenia, fatigue, application site reaction (eg. discoloured hair, dry skin, burning, induration, rash, dermatitis, blister, erythema, paresthesia, pruritus)
Genitourinary disorders: Dysuria, hematuria, incontinence, bladder irritability
Hepatobiliary disorders: Hepatic neoplasms, peliosis hepatic.
Immune system disorders: Allergic reaction, hypersensitivity reaction.
Investigations: Weight increase, fluctuating testosterone levels, testosterone decreased, abnormal liver function tests (e.g. transaminases, elevated gammaglutamyltransferase {GGTP}, bilirubin) lipid abnormalities (hyperlipidemia, elevated triglycerides, decreased high density lipoprotein (HDL)).
Metabolism and nutrition disorders: Increased appetite, electrolyte changes (nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus, sodium), urine calcium decrease, glucose tolerance impaired, elevated cholesterol.
Musculoskeletal and connective tissue
disorders:
Myalgia, arthralgia.
Neoplasms Benign, Malignant and Uspecified
(Cysts and Polyps):
Prostate cancer (see Warnings and Precautions).
Nervous system disorders: Insomnia, headache, dizziness, sleep apnea, amnesia.
Psychiatric disorders: Personality disorder, confusion, anger, aggression, depression, anxiety, decreased libido, cognitive disturbance, emotional lability, nervousness.
Reproductive system and breast disorders: Enlarged prostate (benign), free prostate-specific antigen increased, testicular atrophy, epididymitis, oligospermia, priapism, impotence, precocious puberty, gynecomastia, mastodynia.
Respiratory, thoracic and mediastinal
disorders:
Dyspnea.
Skin and subcutaneous tissue disorders: Pruritus, rash, urticaria, vesiculo-bullous rash, seborrhea, acne, alopecia.

In addition, one patient reported experiencing serum sickness and another patient reported experiencing both a hepatoma and polycystic kidneys.

Drug Interactions

Drug-Drug Interactions

Insulin

In diabetic patients, the metabolic effects of androgens may decrease blood glucose and, therefore, insulin requirements.

Propranolol

In a published pharmacokinetic study of an injectable testosterone product, administration of testosterone cypionate led to an increased clearance of propranolol in the majority of men tested. It is unknown if this would apply to ANDROGEL.

Corticosteroids

The concurrent administration of testosterone with adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) or corticosteroids may enhance edema formation; thus these drugs should be administered cautiously particularly in patients with cardiac, renal or hepatic disease.

Anticoagulants

Androgens may increase sensitivity to oral anticoagulants. Therefore more frequent monitoring of the international normalized ratio (INR) and prothrombin time are recommended in patients taking anticoagulants, especially at the initiation and termination of androgen therapy. Dosage of the anticoagulant may require reduction in order to maintain satisfactory therapeutic hypoprothrombinemia.

Drug-Food Interactions

Interactions with food have not been established.

Drug-Herb Interactions

Literature reports indicate that some herbal products (e.g. St John’s wort) which are available as over-the-counter (OTC) products might interfere with steroid metabolism and therefore may decrease plasma testosterone levels.

Drug-Laboratory Interactions

Androgens may decrease levels of thyroxine-binding globulin, resulting in decreased total T4 serum levels and increased resin uptake of T3 and T4. Free thyroid hormone levels remain unchanged, however, and there is no clinical evidence of thyroid dysfunction.

Dosage and Administration

ANDROGEL is a transparent or slightly opalescent colourless gel with an odour of alcohol containing 1% testosterone. ANDROGEL provides continuous transdermal delivery of testosterone, the primary circulating endogenous androgen, for 24 hours following a single application to intact, clean, dry skin of the shoulders, upper arms and/or abdomen.

A daily application of ANDROGEL (testosterone gel) 5 g, 7.5 g, or 10 g delivers 50 mg, 75 mg, or 100 mg of testosterone, respectively, per day, to the skin’s surface. Approximately 10% of the applied testosterone dose is absorbed across skin of average permeability during a 24-hour period. ANDROGEL delivers physiologic amounts of testosterone, producing circulating testosterone concentrations that approximate normal levels (10.3 – 36.2 nmol/L or 300 – 1000 ng/dL) seen in healthy men.

Recommended Dose and Dosage adjustment

The recommended starting and usual dose of ANDROGEL is 5 g (to deliver 50 mg of testosterone) (4 pump actuations, two 25 mg packets or one 50 mg packet ) applied topically once daily in the morning), (preferably at the same time every day) to clean, dry, intact skin of the shoulders and upper arms and/or abdomen.

As some patients may benefit from higher doses, serum testosterone levels should be measured after initiation of therapy to assist in proper dosing. To ensure proper dosing, serum testosterone concentrations should be measured at intervals. If the desired clinical response is not achieved or if the serum testosterone concentration is below the lower limit of the normal range (10.3 nmol/L or 300 ng/dL), the daily ANDROGEL 1% dose may be increased from 5 g to 7.5 g and from 7.5 g to 10 g. for adult males as instructed by the physician. If the serum testosterone concentration exceeds the normal range, the daily testosterone dose may be decreased. If the serum testosterone concentration consistently exceeds the normal range at a daily dose of 50 mg testosterone, ANDROGEL 1% therapy should be discontinued. In addition, serum testosterone concentrations should be assessed periodically.

ANDROGEL is available in either 2.5 g or 5.0 g gel unit-dose packets or a 60 actuation metereddose pump. The pump delivers 1.25 g of gel for each time the pump mechanism is fully depressed (actuation).

Pediatrics (<18 years of age)

ANDROGEL is not indicated for use in children < 18 years of age since safety and efficacy have not been established in this patient population (see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS — Special Populations).

Administration

If using the metered-dose ANDROGEL pump, patients should be instructed to prime the new pump prior to using it for the first time. To do so, with the canister in the upright position, slowly and fully depress the actuator. Up to five depressions may be needed before all of the air is removed from the pump and gel is discharged. The first two actuations which deliver gel, should be discarded to assure precise dose delivery. Discard this portion of gel in household trash in a manner that prevents accidental application or ingestion by household members, especially nursing/pregnant women and children. It is only necessary to prime the pump before the first dose. After priming, patients should completely depress the pump once (1 actuation) for every 1.25 g of gel required to achieve the daily prescribed dosage. The gel should be delivered directly into the palm of the hand and then applied to the desired application sites, either one actuation at a time or upon completion of all actuations, required for the daily dose. Alternatively, the product can be applied directly to the application sites. Application directly to the sites may prevent loss of product that may occur during transfer from the palm of the hand onto the application sites.

For specific dosing guidelines when using the ANDROGEL pump, refer to the chart below:

Prescribed Daily Dose Number of Full Pump Actuations
5.0 g 4
7.5 g 6
10.0 g 8

If using the unit-dose ANDROGEL packet, one half (½) of the contents of the packet should be squeezed into the palm of the hand and immediately applied to the application sites. Once the first half of the packet has been applied, the second half of the packet should be applied in the same manner. Application sites should be allowed to dry for a few minutes prior to dressing. Hands should be washed with soap and water immediately after ANDROGEL has been applied.

Fire, flames or smoking should be avoided until the gel has dried since alcohol based products including ANDROGEL are flammable.

Special Notes on Administration

The physician or health care professional should advise patients of the following:

  • ANDROGEL should not be applied to the scrotum.
  • ANDROGEL should be applied daily to clean, dry, healthy, intact skin.
  • Currently it is unknown how long showering or swimming should be delayed after application of ANDROGEL. For optimal absorption of testosterone, it appears reasonable to wait at least 5-6 hours after application prior to showering or swimming. Nevertheless, showering or swimming after just 1 hour should have a minimal effect on the amount of ANDROGEL absorbed if done very infrequently.

Transference of ANDROGEL to another person can be completely prevented when application site is covered with a long-sleeved shirt (cotton-polyester blend).

Potential for Secondary Exposure to Testosterone and Steps to Prevent Secondary Exposure

Secondary exposure to testosterone in children and women can occur with the use of testosterone gel in men. Cases of secondary exposure to testosterone have been reported in children with signs and symptoms including enlargement of the penis or clitoris, premature development of pubic hair, increased erections, and aggressive behavior.

  • Physicians should advise patients of the reported signs and symptoms of secondary exposure which may include the following:
    • In children; unexpected sexual development including inappropriate enlargement of the penis or clitoris, premature development of pubic hair, increased erections, and aggressive behavior.
    • In women; changes in hair distribution, increase in acne, or other signs of testosterone effects.
  • The possibility of secondary exposure to testosterone gel should be brought to the attention of a healthcare provider.
  • Testosterone gel should be promptly discontinued until the cause of virilization is identified.

Strict adherence to the following precautions is advised to minimize the potential for secondary exposure to testosterone from testosterone gel in men:

  • Children and women should avoid contact with unwashed or unclothed application site(s) of men using testosterone gel.
  • To minimize the potential for transfer to others, patients using ANDROGEL should apply the product as directed and strictly adhere to the following:
    • Wash hands with soap and water after application.
    • Cover the application site(s) with clothing after the gel has dried.
    • Wash the application site(s) thoroughly with soap and water prior to any situation where skin-to-skin contact of the application site with another person is anticipated.
    • In the events that unwashed or unclothed skin to which ANDROGEL has been applied and/or that the testosterone gel user’s unwashed shirts and/ or other fabrics (such as towels and sheets) come in direct contact with the skin of another person, the general area of contact on the other person should be washed with soap and water as soon as possible. Studies show that residual testosterone is removed from the skin surface by washing with soap and water.

Overdosage

For management of a suspected drug overdose, contact your regional Poison Control Centre.

Symptoms of a testosterone overdose are not known. No specific antidote is available. Symptomatic and supportive treatment should be given.

One case of acute testosterone enanthate overdose following an injection has been reported in the literature. This was a case of a cerebrovascular accident in a patient with a high plasma testosterone concentration of 11,400 ng/dl (395 nmol/l).

Action and Clinical Pharmacology

ANDROGEL (testosterone gel) contains 1% testosterone and provides continuous transdermal delivery of testosterone, the primary circulating endogenous androgen.

Pharmacodynamics

Testosterone and Hypogonadism

Testosterone and dihydrotestosterone (DHT), endogenous androgens, are responsible for the normal growth and development of the male sex organs and for maintenance of secondary sex characteristics. These effects include the growth and maturation of prostate, seminal esicles, penis, and scrotum; the development of male hair distribution, such as facial, pubic, chest, and axillary hair; laryngeal enlargement; vocal chord thickening; alterations in body musculature; and fat distribution.

Male hypogonadism results from insufficient secretion of testosterone and is characterized by low serum testosterone concentrations. Signs/symptoms associated with male hypogonadism include decreased sexual desire with or without erectile dysfunction, fatigue and loss of energy, mood depression/ disorder and depressive symptoms, regression of some secondary sexual characteristics, osteoporosis, weakness, irritability and decreased motivation. Although causality has not been established, there are associations between hypogonadism and depression, osteoporosis, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and increased mortality in men. Hypogonadism is a risk factor for osteoporosis in men.

General Androgen Effects

Drugs in the androgen class also promote retention of nitrogen, sodium, water, potassium, phosphorus, and decreased urinary excretion of calcium.

Androgens have been reported to increase protein anabolism and decrease protein catabolism. Nitrogen balance is improved only when there is sufficient intake of calories and protein. Androgens have been reported to stimulate the production of red blood cells by enhancing erythropoietin production.

Androgens are responsible for the growth spurt of adolescence and for the eventual termination of linear growth brought about by fusion of the epiphyseal growth centers. In children, exogenous androgens accelerate linear growth rates but may cause a disproportionate advancement in bone maturation. Use over long periods may result in fusion of the epiphyseal growth centers and termination of the growth process.

During exogenous administration of androgens, endogenous testosterone release may be inhibited through feedback inhibition of pituitary luteinizing hormone (LH). At large doses of exogenous androgens, spermatogenesis may also be suppressed through feedback inhibition of pituitary follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH).

Pharmacokinetics

Absorption

ANDROGEL (testosterone gel) is a hydroalcoholic formulation that dries quickly when applied to the skin surface. The skin serves as a reservoir for the sustained release of testosterone into the systemic circulation. In a study with the 10 g dose (to deliver 100 mg testosterone), all patients showed an increase in serum testosterone within 30 minutes, and eight of nine patients had a serum testosterone concentration within normal range by 4 hours after the initial application. Absorption of testosterone into the blood continues for the entire 24-hour dosing interval. Serum concentrations approximate the steady state level by the end of the first 24 hours and are at steady state by the second or third day of dosing.

Approximately 10% of testosterone from the applied ANDROGEL dose is absorbed across the skin during 24 hours, resulting in about 9-14% bioavailability of testosterone from the T-gel formulation. Nearly 1% of absorbed testosterone appears in the systemic circulation as dihydrotestosterone (DHT). There is no accumulation of testosterone or its metabolites such as estradiol and DHT, during continuous treatment.

With single daily applications of ANDROGEL, follow-up measurements 30, 90 and 180 days after starting treatment have confirmed that serum testosterone concentrations are generally maintained within the eugonadal range. Similar trends were observed in patients followed up to 3 years. Figure 1 summarizes the 24-hour pharmacokinetic profiles of testosterone for hypogonadal men (<300 ng/dL) maintained on 5 g or 10 g of ANDROGEL (to deliver 50 or 100 mg of testosterone, respectively) for 30 days. The average (± SD) daily testosterone concentration produced by ANDROGEL 10 g on Day 30 was 27.5 (± 10.2) nmol/L and by ANDROGEL 5 g, 19.6 (± 9.1) nmol/L.

Figure 1. Mean ( SD) Steady-State Serum Testosterone Concentrations on Day 30 in Patients Applying ANDROGEL Once Daily


Distribution

Circulating testosterone is chiefly bound in the serum to sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) and albumin. The albumin-bound fraction of testosterone easily dissociates from albumin and is presumed to be bioactive. The portion of testosterone bound to SHBG is not considered biologically active. Approximately 40% of testosterone in plasma is bound to SHBG, 2% remains unbound (free) and the rest is bound to albumin and other proteins. The amount of SHBG in the serum and the total testosterone level will determine the distribution of bioactive and nonbioactive androgen.

Metabolism

There is considerable variation in the half-life of testosterone as reported in the literature, ranging from ten to 100 minutes.

When ANDROGEL treatment is discontinued after achieving steady state, serum testosterone levels remain in the normal range for 24 to 48 hours but return to their pretreatment levels by the fifth day after the last application.

Testosterone is metabolized to various 17-keto steroids through two different pathways. The major active metabolites of testosterone are estradiol and dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Testosterone is metabolized to DHT by steroid 5α reductase located in the skin, liver, and the urogenital tract of the male. Estradiol is formed by an aromatase enzyme complex in the brain, fat, and testes. DHT binds with greater affinity to SHBG than does testosterone. In many tissues the activity of testosterone depends on its reduction to DHT, which binds to cytosol receptor proteins. The steroid-receptor complex is transported to the nucleus where it initiates transcription and cellular changes related to androgen action. In reproductive tissues, DHT is further metabolized to 3- α and 3- β androstanediol.

DHT concentrations increased in parallel with testosterone concentrations during testosterone gel treatment. After 90 days of treatment, mean DHT concentrations remained generally within the normal range for testosterone gel-treated subjects.

Excretion

About 90% of a dose of testosterone given intramuscularly is excreted in the urine as glucuronic and sulfuric acid conjugates of testosterone and its metabolites; about 6% of a dose is excreted in the feces, mostly in the unconjugated form. Inactivation of testosterone occurs primarily in the liver.

Special Populations and Conditions

In patients treated with ANDROGEL, there are no observed differences in the average daily serum testosterone concentration at steady-state based on age, cause of hypogonadism or body mass index. Since no formal studies were conducted involving patients with renal or hepatic insufficiencies, the use of ANDROGEL is not recommended in men with serious liver or kidney disorders.

Storage and Stability

Store at controlled room temperature (15 °- 30 ° C).

Special Handling Instructions

ANDROGEL pumps or packets should be discarded in household trash in a manner that prevents accidental application or ingestion by household members, especially nursing/pregnant women and children.

Dosage Forms, Composition and Packaging

ANDROGEL (testosterone gel) for topical use is a transparent or slightly opalescent colourless gel with an odour of alcohol. One gram of gel contains 10mg of testosterone.

Availability of Dosage Forms

ANDROGEL is supplied in a non-aerosol, metered-dose pump. The pump is composed of plastic and stainless steel and a LDPE/aluminum foil inner liner encased in rigid plastic with a polypropylene cap. Each ANDROGEL pump is capable of dispensing sixty 1.25 g doses.

ANDROGEL is also supplied in unit-dose aluminum foil packets in cartons of 30. Each packet has 2.5 g or 5.0 g of gel and contains 25 mg or 50 mg of testosterone, respectively.

ANDROGEL is supplied as follows:

Strength Package Size
1% (25 mg testosterone) 30 packets: 2.5 g gel per packet
1% (50 mg testosterone) 30 packets: 5.0 g gel per packet
1% Two 60-actuation metered-dose pumps: 1.25 g gel per actuation

Active Ingredient

Testosterone USP.

Non-medicinal ingredients

Isopropyl myristate NF, Alcohol, Carbopol 980 NF, NaOH 0.1 N, Purified Water USP.