Ethnic differences in serum testosterone concentration among Malay, Chinese and Indian men: A cross-sectional study

Retnagowri Rajandram, Jun K. Koong, Kia F. Quek, Eng G. Lee, Azad H.A. Razack, Shanggar Kuppusamy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Objective: To investigate non-urological patients with multiple comorbidities for factors contributing towards differences in testosterone concentration in multiethnic Malaysian men. Design: An observational study. Patients: Sexually active men, ≥40 years, with no known urological problems, were recruited at the phlebotomy clinic at our centre. Measurements: A brief history along with latest fasting lipid profile and plasma glucose levels were obtained. An Aging Male Symptoms questionnaire was administered; waist circumference (WC) and serum testosterone concentration were measured. Statstical Analysis: Analysis of testosterone concentration between Malay, Indian and Chinese men was performed. Statistical tests such as analysis of variance, χ2 test, univariate and multivariable regression were performed. Any p <.05 was noted as statistically significant. Results: Among the 604 participants analysed, mean testosterone concentration was significantly lower in Malays (15.1 ± 5.9 nmol/L) compared to the Chinese (17.0 ± 5.9 nmol/L) and Indian (16.1 ± 6.5 nmol/L) participants. The mean WC was also found to be higher among the Malays (96.1 ± 10.9 cm) compared to Chinese (92.6 ± 9.6 cm) and Indians (95.6 ± 9.9 cm). Testosterone concentration tended to be lower with higher age, but this was not statistically significant (p >.05). In the multivariable analysis only Malay ethnicity, WC ≥ 90 cm and low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) were associated with lower testosterone concentration. Conclusion: In this study, Malaysian men of Malay origin had lower testosterone concentration compared with Indian and Chinese men. WC and low HDL were also associated with lower testosterone concentrations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-309
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Endocrinology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022


  • androgens
  • central obesity
  • men's health
  • metabolic syndrome
  • race

Cite this