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June 30, 1962

Underdeveloped Genitalia-Reply

Author Affiliations

1808 Leimert Blvd., Oakland 2, Calif.

JAMA. 1962;180(13):1144. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050260066018

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I agree with the general message of the letter from our English colleague. The first sentence of my answer stated that "testosterone or gonadotropic hormone treatment is usually reserved for those cases of developmental retardation in which the young man is at least 15 years old and shows no signs of maturation into pubescence." I went on to describe situations ( rare though they are ) in which laboratory tests can help the physician determine the need for hormone replacement. This is much to be preferred to treatment with hormones when no clear indication for such treatment exists. A patient I saw recently may be of interest. This 35-year-old man presented himself to me because he thought that I, as a "teen-age doctor," might be able to help him. When he was 12 years old a physician frightened him by telling him that his penis and testes were abnormally small and he