Should You Look Into Further Testing If Your Doctor Says Thyroid Levels Are Normal Yet Symptoms Are Present
YES! You should. YOU are the expert on youre own body, and if something doesnt feel right, you have the right to investigate it.
Serum testing of thyroid levels by your doctor usually starts with TSH and maybe T4.
The problem with this is that just measuring TSH clues us in on pituitary function rather than thyroid function. It does not evaluate how much active thyroid youre making.
Another caveat to conventional thyroid testing is that the ranges for normal are very large therefore, many women can be experiencing subclinical symptoms of hypo/hyperthyroidism without being notified by their doctor.
If possible, request a full thyroid panel as described earlier in this post and seek a functionally trained health professional to interpret whether your levels are optimal.
What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Low Estrogen In Men
In men, male menopause may result from too little estrogen in addition to lower testosterone levels, at least according to some recent studies. Diminished libido, strength and energy are the main symptoms. However, testosterone levels tend not to fall as sharply in aging men as estrogen does in women who are post-menopausal. Further research is needed to determine if changes that come with aging are due to hormonal declines and if so, which hormones are the culprit.
Discover What Your Body’s Hormone Levels Are Like
This easy-to-use female hormone panel will provide you with your levels of each of the 11 biomarkers measured in our Womenâs Health test and whether your levels fall within established normal ranges for your age.
As with all of our tests, we encourage you to share your results with your doctor as he/she can best offer guidance in your health and hormonal questions.
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Why Take The Oestrogen Test
Our Female Hormone home blood test kit allows you to measure essential female sex hormones.
It is recommended for all women over 35 to assess your risk from the menopause.
If you do have the menopause, we also recommend monitoring your Bone Health as lowered oestrogen levels put you at an increased risk of developing osteoporosis .
Note: If you are still having periods then as female hormones fluctuate over time in a natural rhythm it is important this test is taken on day three of your menstrual cycle . We recommend your periods have returned to a regular cycle before testing, if you have recently stopped hormone replacement or contraception.
Take control of your health without any of the inconvenience of going to the doctors with one of Vitalls at-home blood tests.
Which Hormone Test Is The Easiest To Get
It depends. As mentioned, serum blood testing by your doctor is the standard of practice and typically easiest for most people to get if they have easy access to the doctor. You, as the patient, dont have to do any work except drive yourself to the lab.
Finding a qualified nutrition expert or physician that is functionally trained who will order saliva and urine testing and properly interpret the results may be less accessible, but it just takes a little research to see who is in your area.
Youll have to read directions and complete the testing on your own with saliva and urine testing. There are benefits to having a combination of serum, saliva, and urine for a full picture of whats going on with your hormones.
We did it! Thanks for sticking through until the end!
As you can now see, the options for hormone imbalance tests are quite advanced these days. There are strengths and limitations to serum, saliva, and urine testing, and when used together, can provide important information about your hormones when you expect that things just feel off. You are more in touch with your body than anyone else. You know what does and does not feel right. So, if clear answers to your problems dont show up on a standard lab test, investigate further!
Sometimes the root of your symptoms is a result of food sensitivities or not following an anti-inflammatory diet. Embarking on an elimination diet could be instrumental in managing your hormonal imbalance symptoms.
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What Is The Most Accurate Way To Test Cortisol Levels
Serum is not found to be a very helpful measure for cortisol levels, and this is because cortisol follows a diurnal pattern.
It rises when you get out of bed, hitting its peak about 30 minutes after waking, and then slowly falls as the day goes on. We arent able to see this pattern by performing a snapshot in time serum cortisol test. This is where salivary testing is thought to be the best option when testing free cortisol, especially when considering the cortisol awakening response .
Are You Living With A Hormone Imbalance
Hormones are chemical messengers that affect the way your cells and organs function. Its normal for hormone levels to fluctuate over time, such as with your monthly cycle, during pregnancy, or with the onset of menopause.
For women, the most pronounced hormonal changes come in the 40s and 50s, but are also seen in the mid-30s. Hormonal changes not only progress with age, but are also linked to lifestyle, diet, medications, pollution, toxins and xenoestrogens that we are exposed to every day.
Hormonal imbalance can be to blame for a long list of symptoms which include irregular periods and infertility, cravings and persistent weight gain, digestive problems, low libido and vaginal dryness, fatigue, anxiety, irritability and depression, insomnia and poor sleep patterns, chronic acne and night sweats
A simple oestrogen and progesterone test can identify a hormonal imbalance. Changes to diet, digestive health, stress management, improved sleep and consistent physical activity have been shown to be effective in managing the effects of hormone fluctuations.
We can also offer a home collection finger prick version of this test here: Female Hormone Check
*Note this test is not appropriate if you are taking oral contraceptives.
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How Does This Test Work
Order your test from the panel on the right and we will post your kit to you first class. The kit will contain everything you need to collect a small blood sample in the comfort of your own home. For the test you prick your finger with the lancets provided in your kit. Step by step instructions are also provided via email, please follow them very carefully. When you have collected your sample, post it back to us in the pre-paid envelope provided. We will then email you with your results.
How Do You Test For Hormone Imbalance
When it comes to how to test for hormone imbalance, you have severaloptions to choose from.
Let’s take a look at 4 of the most common methods of hormone testing.
Blood testing for hormonal imbalance may be done through the use of at-home tests or by a physician.
A blood hormone panel can be done on both men and women and will test for a wide variety of hormones including:
A female-specific hormone blood test checks hormone levels associated with aging and overall well-being.
For this test, blood will be drawn on specific days of a woman’s cycle and tested for a broad variety of hormones.
As with blood testing, urine hormone testing may also be conducted through a home test or through your physicians office.
How do you check your hormone balance by using urine?
Urine testing involves collecting multiple samples of urine at different times throughout the day or collecting all of your urine for 24 hours in a specified container.
One of the most popular urine hormone tests is theDUTCH testor Dried Urine Test for Comprehensive Hormones.
DUTCH testing is highly advanced and provides an extensive hormonal profile of sex and adrenal hormones, including:
How do you test for hormone imbalance by using saliva?
For saliva testing, patients are asked to spit into a series of plastic tubes, over the course of one or several days, in order to test hormonal levels of:
- Melatonin and
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How To Test For Hormone Imbalance
Instead of self-treating your symptoms with social media-influenced products and diets, you can make informed decisions about diet protocols, supplements, and lifestyle interventions to properly address your concerns.
Hormones are downright complex. Different doctors and healthcare professionals will have their own opinions and preferences with how and what they test and typically are based on a patients specific set of symptoms.
Testing for hormones can be done in several ways, and there are pros and cons to these different types of tests. Here is everything you need to know about how to test for hormone imbalance:
Adrenal Testing With Saliva
For a long time testing adrenal function using saliva was the standard as it measures free cortisol levels, and it is easy to do 4 different samples throughout the day to assess the rhythm of cortisol.
But the saliva test does not measure your total cortisol production, or how your body is metabolizing cortisol so just knowing your free cortisol levels can be a bit misleading.
It is possible to be producing a ton of cortisol but the saliva test will only show very low levels of free cortisol, or the opposite can occur. Without knowing all of the information it is impossible to know what is happening with the adrenals so that I can recommend the right treatment plan.
The only time that I can see the saliva cortisol test being valid is if it is also combined with a 24-hour urine test to also assess total cortisol production, but it would be a lot better and easier to do the DUTCH hormone test.
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Risk Factors For Vaginal Atrophy
Some women are more likely than others to get atrophic vaginitis. Women who have never given birth vaginally are more prone to vaginal atrophy than women who delivered their babies vaginally.
Smoking impairs blood circulation, depriving the vagina and other tissues of oxygen. Tissue thinning occurs where blood flow is decreased or restricted. Smokers are also less responsive to estrogen therapy in pill form.
What Will It Be Like To Test My Hormones At Home
How do the testing kits work?
At-home test kits can measure hormone levels in the blood, saliva, or urine, depending on which testing company you go with.
Test kits come with a sterilized container youll use to collect your blood, saliva, or urine, then youll mail the container back to the lab. Blood test kits involve pricking your finger to draw out a small amount of blood.
Some tests also require that you avoid eating, drinking, brushing or flossing your teeth, or using certain supplements, medications, or substances like caffeine, alcohol, or tobacco before collecting your sample. Follow testing directions closely for accurate results.
Results can take about 1-2 weeks after mailing in your sample, but again, it depends on the testing company.
How much do testing kits cost?
Most at-home hormone testing kits cost somewhere between $100 and $250 per panel, depending on the company. Home testing kits arent typically covered by insurance, but may be eligible for FSA or HSA.
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Q When Should I Collect The Sample
A.The saliva sample should be collected upon waking before eating, drinking, or participating in any exercise, unless otherwise instructed. If you are still experiencing menstrual cycles, it is ideal to collect saliva between days 19 to 21 of cycle. If your normal cycle is > 28 days, collection should be done 7 days before next period is due. If you are on cyclic hormone therapy, it is best to collect sample towards the end of the hormone therapy cycle. If you have gone 3 months without a period, are postmenopausal and not taking hormone replacement therapy or you take hormones every day, you may collect the sample at anytime of the month.
What Are Risk Factors For High Blood Cholesterol
Lifestyle, some health conditions, and family history can raise your risk for high cholesterol. Your doctor may suggest you have your cholesterol checked more often if you have risk factors, such as the following:
- A family history of heart disease or high blood cholesterol. You are more at risk of having high cholesterol if other people in your family have it. This may be due to genetics, but it may also be that families share the same unhealthy lifestyle habits. Some people also have a genetic condition called familial hypercholesterolemia, which can cause high levels of low-density lipoprotein , or bad, cholesterol from a young age.
- Diabetes. Type 2 diabetes raises bad cholesterol and lowers high-density lipoprotein , or good, cholesterol, raising the risk for heart disease and stroke.
- Older age. As you age, your body cant clear cholesterol as well as it used to.
- Being male. Men tend to have higher LDL and lower HDL cholesterol levels than women do. But after menopause , LDL cholesterol levels in women increase.3,4
- Having overweight or obesity. Excess weight, unhealthy eating habits, and lack of physical activity can lead to high cholesterol.
- Previously having had high cholesterol. If you have a history of high cholesterol, your doctor may want you to keep a closer watch on your cholesterol.
Your doctor may tell you not to eat or drink anything except water for 9 to 12 hours before the test.
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How To Improve Chances Of Conception For Couples
There are fertility tests for women as well as semen analysis tests that can provide more information on the overall chances of pregnancy for a couple. Doctors can prescribe hormone medication for infertility that can help both partners improve their likelihood of conception. You should also get a complete test of your fallopian tubes and an ovarian reserve test to determine risk of infertility via a doctor. Improving biological health markers, as well as making the right lifestyle changes can help improve your fertility chances.
About Hormone Replacement Therapy
Once we have your hormonal imbalance diagnosis, CosmeticGyn Center works with you to begin treatment. Dr. Huertas can address your symptoms by implementing hormone replacement therapy. We perform this treatment by injecting special pellets underneath the skin on one of your upper buttocks. Our team uses a local anesthetic to make the procedure more comfortable. Patients will need to return every 4 6 months for follow-up appointments. We continue to take hormone tests as needed to make sure your hormone levels remain stable.
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What Are Hormone Test Kits
Hormone test kits can give you an indication of whether the hormone levels in your body are within a healthy range and whether your hormones are able to function properly.
Hormones are messenger substances in your body that carry out important processes. They travel with the blood to pass chemically encoded information from one part of the body to another. Depending on the hormone, this information transfer takes varying lengths of time, from a few seconds to several hours. Once they have reached their destination, hormones usually trigger a complex chain of reactions.
Does Insurance Cover The Costs
Most of these testing companies do not accept direct billing from health insurance providers.
Before buying a test, it may be a good idea to check whether the insurance company will reimburse the cost. If so, a person can forward an invoice from the lab to their insurer with their claim for reimbursement.
Some companies may also accept payment from flexible spending accounts or health savings accounts.
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What Do The Results Mean
If your estradiol or estrone levels are higher than normal, it may be due to:
- Early puberty in girls delayed puberty in boys
If your estradiol or estrone levels are lower than normal, it may be due to:
- Primary ovarian insufficiency, a condition that causes a womans ovaries to stop working before she is 40 years old
- Turner syndrome, a condition in which a womans sexual characteristics dont develop properly
- An eating disorder, such as anorexia nervosa
- Polycystic ovary syndrome, a common hormone disorder affecting childbearing women. It is one of the leading causes of female infertility.
If you are pregnant and your estriol levels are lower than normal, it may mean your pregnancy is failing or that there is a chance your baby might have a birth defect. If the test shows a possible birth defect, you will need more testing before a diagnosis can be made.
Higher levels of estriol may mean you will be going into labor soon. Normally, estriol levels go up about four weeks before you start labor.
If you have questions about your results, talk to your health care provider.
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Is This Test Still Useful If I Am Using A Form Of Contraception
If you are taking a progesterone only form of contraception such as progesterone-only pill, progesterone implant, or Minerva coil then this test is still useful as these forms of conception do not suppress normal production of FSH, LH, or oestradiol. This test is not useful if taking a combined form of conception e.g the combined oral conceptive pill .
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Written by Elite HRT on April 13, 2022
Camille Freking, Regulatory Affairs Specialist, MEDICAL ADVISOR
As you settle further into adulthood, it isnt unusual to begin feeling or looking a little different. This is a natural part of aging for mens and womens health alike, and it can usually be managed. When low levels of hormones negatively impact the way you look and feel, you may choose to seek guidance from a healthcare provider so you can supplement some of the hormones youre missing and get back to hormonal balance.
Hormone production naturally decreases with age in both men and women. If you believe youre experiencing the symptoms of low estrogen or low testosterone, heres what you need to know about checking your hormones and speaking to a healthcare professional about your concerns.