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June 2012

Best Tests

Age-related testosterone decline in males

Testosterone levels naturally decline with age in males. Some health professionals claim that a clinical syndrome of testosterone deficiency, or andropause, is being under diagnosed, which has led to dramatic increases in testosterone prescribing and testing in many countries. Routine measurement of testosterone levels is not indicated in older males. Testing should only be considered in males who have clinically significant signs and symptoms of late-onset hypogonadism. View Article

Syphilis: testing for “the great imitator”

Over one hundred people per year in New Zealand are diagnosed with syphilis. While this only represents a small number of patients, the incidence of syphilis is increasing. Syphilis is most infectious in the earlier stages, therefore prompt identification and treatment is required to prevent transmission. Recognising the signs and risk factors and incorporating syphilis testing into sexual health checks is essential. View Article

Appropriate use of the faecal occult blood test for colorectal cancer

What is a faecal occult blood test? When should a faecal occult blood test be requested? How should the results of a faecal occult blood test be managed? View Article