Life Time Fitness is facing lawsuits from a pharmaceutical provider after its plans to establish an in-house Low T Center to help boost testosterone levels in its members flopped. LowT Holdings is suing Life Time Fitness in federal court for breach of contract.
Testosterone therapy has become a booming business for drug companies in recent years. Aggressive marketing campaigns and coining the phrase “Low T” to lure men to their doctors to ask for treatments by name has resulted in skyrocketing sales of the male hormone. Advertisements promise the benefits of boosting low testosterone levels can include everything from an increase in libido and muscle mass to a decrease in fatigue and belly fat.
The popularity of testosterone therapies helped create the Low T Center, which was founded in 2009 and expanded to more than 50 locations in 12 states. The fitness center says it interviewed several providers before settling on Low T Center to help expand its member services portfolio. Life Time Fitness, which has more than 100 locations nationwide, allegedly signed an “exclusive multi-year agreement” with the testosterone group.
But the relationship started to sour in October 2014, when the fitness center failed to reach certain performance targets set by the Low T Center, which included displaying banners and other material at its clubs. Low T Center also claims the fitness club set out competitors’ advertisements. Furthermore, Life Time Fitness expressed to its members that before trying testosterone supplements, “we’d recommend acting on all the nutrition, exercise and lifestyle choices that help optimize testosterone,” the lawsuit states.
Testosterone replacement therapy is already a controversial subject. The hormone supplement is only FDA approved for treating men with hypogonadism, a condition in which the testes do not produce enough testosterone due to disease or injury. Despite the aggressive marketing campaigns pushing men to pursue it like the fountain of youth, the therapy can be dangerous, especially in men who have no testosterone deficiency.
Recent studies have linked testosterone treatments to an increased risk of heart attacks, strokes, and death. Makers of testosterone products such as Androgel, Testim and Axiron are facing thousands of lawsuits fro men or their loved ones claiming they were never warned of the risks associated with the drugs prior to treatment.
Source: The Dallas Morning News