Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Should I Get My Hormones Tested

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Need More Hormone Help

Why you should get your hormones tested!

If youre needing some health upgrading, its time you started you looking into whats going on with your hormones.

Ive designed a 4 day hormone detox and evaluation to help you understand exactly whats out of whack and how you can start getting back to balance so that your hormones no longer have to suffer.

to get your FREE detox and evaluation!

Hormones Are Complicated Things To Test They Change Every Single Hour Of Every Single Day We Have A 28 Day Cycle And We Need To Stop Think That Were Supposed To Be Experiencing The Same Thing Every Day So In Some Cases They Are Indicated To Test If We Need To Understand If Youre Ovulating Testing Can Be Important But Sometimes We Dont Necessarily Need To Test Your Hormones To Tell Us Whats Going On

Its important to test your hormones on specific days of your cycle because to get a really good understanding of levels and how theyre affecting your symptoms, you have to test and compare with where they should be based on the timing of your cycle. Otherwise when you simply test on the day you happen to be in the doctors office getting an exam, your levels may be just fine for that particular day.

So, heres when you should be testing your hormones and heres what you maybe dont need to test for. And, for claritys sake, you should consider day 1 to be the first full day of your bleed.

The Doctor Keeps Talking About Reference Ranges What Does This Mean

A reference range is the range of results seen in healthy people under standard conditions eg, rested, fed or fasted, at nine in the morning or non-pregnant. There is more than one range to allow for normal variations such as age, gender, the stage of the menstrual cycle, menopause and pregnancy.

Unfortunately, the range for test results in healthy people and those with illnesses usually overlap, so there is rarely a clear dividing line. A result can be outside the reference range in a healthy person but within it for someone who is ill. There also needs to be a balance between use of the range for detecting disease and the need to minimise false diagnosis. Thus, the reference range includes most results seen in normal people, but not all of them . Because of this, the reference range is a guide and not a rigid definition of normality.

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Healthconfirm Hormone Vitality Complete+

HealthConfirm Hormone Vitality Complete+ measures your DHEA-S, cortisol, progesterone, testosterone, and estradiol levels. Checking these hormones can give you valuable information about your fertility status, whether youre getting close to menopause, or whether you might have a medical condition that needs treatment.

HealthConfirm uses saliva samples to check your hormone levels, so your kit will come with collection tubes and other supplies to ensure its easy to collect the right amount of saliva. The company also offers free shipping both ways, so theres no need to pay extra to send your samples to the laboratory.

When youre ready to check out on the HealthConfirm website, you can use a credit or debit card to pay for your order. To ensure test accuracy, HealthConfirm uses only CLIA-certified labs to process its hormone tests. The test kits have also been cleared by the FDA to ensure a high level of quality. You can access your results via a private online dashboard within a few days of mailing your sample. HealthConfirm includes physician support in the price of its hormone testing kits, ensuring that you have an opportunity to learn more about what the results mean for your health. HealthConfirm doesnt accept insurance.

Cost: $219

Testing Your Hormones With Urine Testing

Should You Consider Testing your Hormones?

Urine testing is like saliva testing, except it usually tests more hormones.

It may also be slightly more accurate especially if collected over a 24 hour period, and is more stable if its a dried urine test .

But, its also more expensive. And you also need to do it through a natural practitioner who offers it.

An example of this is the DUTCH test. This is a great test. If you can afford it and can find someone who does it and knows how to interpret it for acne patterns, then Id recommend this.

For the most part though, a basic saliva test that tests the hormones I listed will do a great job. I find myself recommending this the most.

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Preparing For Hormone Testing At Cedars

We explain the tests you need and answer any questions you may have.

Here’s what to expect:

  • Stop certain medications: We let you know whether to stop taking drugs such as oral steroids or estrogen supplements before your test.
  • Visit one of our labs: You go to a Cedars-Sinai lab and provide a blood, urine or saliva sample. If you need stimulation or suppression testing, we let you know in advance how long you’ll need to stay.
  • Collect samples at home: If we need samples over a period of time, you may be able to perform testing at home. We give you special containers for collecting saliva or urine samples and detailed instructions on how to handle them.
  • Receive more than one form of hormone testing: Blood testing is one way we evaluate hormone imbalances. We may recommend additional tests, including stimulation or suppression tests, to learn more about what’s causing the imbalance.
  • Undergo other forms of testing: For problems such as tumors or a possible cancer diagnosis, we use imaging to learn more about their size, location and nature.
Have Questions or Need a Second Opinion?

To make an appointment or refer a patient, call us or send a message to the Endocrinology care team.You can also have us at your convenience.

Lab Test To Consider For A Missing Period

  • Pregnancy test
  • Follicle-stimulating hormone
  • Luteinizing hormone
  • Estradiol
  • Prolactin
  • Fasting insulin
  • Glycated hemoglobin , fasting glucose or glucose challenge

Will you need all of these? Maybe. Maybe not. This is where an experienced clinician can help.

I know that many women experience resistance to their request to have comprehensive hormone testing. I would urge you to seek out a functional medicine practitioner, a naturopathic physician, a reproductive endocrinologist, or a gynecologist. I know it can be super frustrating to try to find a provider that will help you but there are many amazing practitioners out there who can and will help you get the labs you need.

Also dont let a doctor convince you that a missing period doesnt matter because youre not interested in baby-making at the moment. Amenorrhea is a sign of an underlying issue that needs to be addressed, whether youre trying to conceive or not. The quality of care you receive should not be dependent on your whether or not you want to have a baby at this moment.

If your period is missing, Id encourage you to check out my full article on amenorrhea here.

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Why Should I Test My Hormones Every Year

When you hear the word hormones, most people think about the classification of hormones that make up the reproductive system. However, there are about 50 different known hormones that make up the endocrine system. Hormones carry information to cells all over the body, controlling a variety of biological processes including hunger, muscle growth, temperature control, and menstrual cycles to name a few.

At CentreSpringMD we look for root causes of your symptoms and checking a variety of hormones is a part of our workup for most patients. Hormones such as testosterone, estrogen, DHEA, progesterone, insulin, leptin, cortisol and a complete thyroid panel are a few of the hormones that we evaluate regularly.

Stress can play a significant role in the fluctuation of your hormone levels. An alarming 75% of adults reported moderate to high levels of stress according to the American Psychological Association. They also reported stress as a top health concern for U.S. teenagers and further commented that if they dont learn to manage stress, it could have serious long-term health implications.

Common symptoms associated with imbalanced hormones include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weight Gain/Changes in Body Composition
  • Hair loss
  • Changes in temperature control/ hot flashes
  • Changes in Libido
  • Accelerated Aging
  • Premature Death
  • Hormone Testing: 21 Common Symptoms

    Should You Get Your Hormone Levels Checked?

    As we age, our bodies gradually reduce the production of vital hormones. Testosterone, the primary male sex hormone, is vital in the development of secondary sexual characteristics and reproductive tissues in men. Estrogen, the primary female sex hormone, is responsible for sexual and reproductive development in women. A drop in these primary sex hormones negatively affects several physical and mental functions. Hormone testing offered at the Medical Transformation Center in Louisville, KY can help you avoid these negative changes.

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    Hormone Testing At Cedars

    You benefit from the expertise of endocrinologists, doctors who specialize in treating hormone disorders. Many of our endocrinologists completed additional training through fellowships and have decades of experience. All of our experts stay up to date on the latest hormone testing practices.

    We order appropriate tests based on your symptoms, allowing us to quickly pinpoint the source of the problem. And we detect subtle signs of a hormone imbalance, so you receive an accurate diagnosis. Once we confirm a diagnosis, we’ll discuss your personalized care recommendations. Treatments may include:

    • Medical therapy for endocrine disorders
    • Endocrine surgery

    What Is A Hormonal Imbalance

    A hormonal imbalance occurs when your hormones are not produced at the proper levels. You can have many different types of hormonal imbalances. Sometimes, the imbalance means a deficiency in the given hormone while in other times, there might be an overflow. The kind of hormone that is imbalanced will play a major role in determining how the sign and symptoms will manifest and what would be the associated risks involved.

    Though there are a few common life transitions that can cause a hormonal imbalance, such as menopause or pregnancy, you can struggle with such a problem at any point in your life. Both men and women can experience hormonal imbalances. Children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly may also find their hormones out of balance.

    Because hormones and their functionalities are so varied, there’s no one single way to detect a hormonal imbalance. A wide range of issues can indicate that something is amiss with your hormones. This is one of the reasons why your best bet is to get tested occasionally, especially when you start developing uncommon symptoms.

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    Signs Of Hormone Imbalance In Women

    So often we attribute our body’s changes incorrectly. As women progress through life, the body responds differently, and it plays out in a number of ways.

    1- Estrogen Imbalance

    Estrogen is made by your ovaries, your adrenal glands, and to a much lesser extent, by your fat cells. It has many functions, including:

    • Maintaining Bone Calcium
    • Regulating HDL and LDL Cholesterol in Blood
    • Helping Maintain Blood Sugar Levels
    • Helping with Memory
    • Balancing Emotions

    Estrogen imbalance can cause numerous symptoms which will depend on whether you are experiencing an overabundance of the hormone or less of it. The causes and signs can be discerned, but they take a watchful eye. Too little estrogen is often caused by:

    • Hypogonadism
    • Hypopituitarism
    • Failed Pregnancy
    • Hot Flashes

    3- Testosterone Imbalance

    Testosterone is not just a male sex hormone. Women also have lesser amounts of this hormone. It is produced by your ovaries and adrenal glands. Testosterone has the important function of aiding you by protecting you against developing osteoporosis. It has many other effects on your health, including sex drive, mood, energy levels and body fat percentage.

    If you have too much testosterone in your body, such as when you have a condition called polycystic ovary syndrome, you could experience:

    • Irregular Periods
    • Increased Body or Facial Hair
    • Hair Loss
    • Acne

    Too little testosterone often occurs during menopause and can lower your sex drive, cause depression, weakness of your muscles and fatigue.

    How A Doctor Checks A Thyroid

    What tests should I get for my thyroid?

    If you go to your physician about a thyroid issue, chances are they will physically examine your thyroid. But you will also need to get blood tests that break down your thyroid levels. Dr. Block explained to me the TSH Test is what is used to diagnose thyroid issues. It measures these “signals from your pituitary to your thyroid,” but she explained that the TSH levels are “the opposite of what people think.” A high TSH level indicates hypothyroidism and a low level indicated hyperthyroidism.

    She said that a “high TSH is seen in hypothyroidism because your brain is yelling at your thyroid to speed up,” while a “low TSH is seen in hyperthyroidism because your pituitary is telling your thyroid to slow down or stop making thyroid hormone.”

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    Your Personal Cholesterol Levels Are Up

    One of the reasons people don’t always know that they should ask to get their thyroid checked is the fact that so many of the symptoms can also indicate some other issue besides too-high or too-low thyroid hormonal levels. You don’t think of a high cholesterol level as indicative of a thyroid problem, but it can be. The Mayo Clinic says to watch out for an “elevated blood cholesterol level” as a symptom of hypothyroidism. The American Thyroid Association explains why this is. “When thyroid hormone levels are low and TSH levels are increased , cholesterol levels are increased,” the organization says. So treatment for the condition may also help to lower cholesterol levels.

    Getting Your Thyroid Checked Can Be A New Beginning

    If you have some of the symptoms listed, and you just don’t feel right, you might want to talk to your physician about it and have your thyroid checked. If your thyroid is the issue, there are a variety of treatments out there that can potentially improve your health and quality of life. It does get better.

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    Getting Your Hormones Tested Will Give You Peace Of Mind

    You know that confusion I was referring to before?

    The millions of treatment options?

    Doesnt that feel like a heavy weight?

    Like inexplicable anxiety like youre never going to get clear, because you have no idea what da feck is going on and why youre breaking out, and so how could you possibly find the right treatment?

    Although youll never know everything about why your body does what it does, a hormone test is a great start to getting on the right treatment path.

    Believe me, youll feel a lot more empowered if you know whats up.

    More Information About Hormone Testing

    How Can I Get My Hormones Checked For Imbalance?

    Hormone levels change as you agesome change throughout the day. We use hormone testing to detect and evaluate hormone imbalances that may be making you sick. We often conduct hormone testing using a blood sample, but some tests require urine or saliva samples.

    We frequently test levels of:

    • Estrogen and testosterone
    • Adrenal gland hormones, such as cortisol
    • Growth hormone, prolactin and other pituitary gland hormones
    • Thyroid hormones, such as thyroxine

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    Hormones And Proper Testing

    Now, I want to talk a little bit about hormones and proper testing. There are various ways, and many of you are familiar with this, of measuring hormones. We can do blood testing. We can test hormones in the urine such as the DUTCH test or we can do swab test or salivary testing for hormones. My personal opinion is that there are some ways that are preferred so I really like to check insulin with a blood test. I like to check thyroid hormones with a blood test and also, I dont know if you know this or not, but your fat actually is the largest endocrine organ in your body. Your belly fat, also called visceral fat, makes either hormones that are pro-inflammatory leading to inflammation or they make hormones that are protective for you, anti-inflammatory hormones and these can be measured through a blood test.

    Female hormones, these can be measured through blood test and also urine test. The DUTCH complete testing is something we just started offering. Also, adrenal hormones, what about them? Well, I talked a little bit about how I measure the AM cortisol with blood work and if its inappropriately low, it makes me suspect obstructive sleep apnea and we make sure that the person doesnt have that because if they do have it and we treat it, it fixes so many things.

    Magdalena W.: Sorry, can we just go back to the previous slide.

    Alan Hopkins: Sure.

    Which Test Should I Choose

    i-screen offers a number of hormone tests, and it can be confusing to decide which test is right for you.

    If your blood tests or saliva tests do reveal that you have a hormone imbalance, then our team of qualified doctors can recommend how you can take steps to improve your health and wellbeing.

    If you need further guidance on which test is right for you, then contact us and one of our medical professionals will be in touch to work through your symptoms.

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    Getting My Thyroid Issues Under Control Took A While

    Even though I had a disorder that was supposed to speed up my metabolism, I had actually gained weight because I was too fatigued to do much of anything outside of going to work. It took about six frustrating months of my endocrinologist trying different thyroid medications to get me back to normal. I was at the point where I was considering radiation to “zap” the thyroid just to get some relief. Finally, we found a medication that worked. After several years of regularly monitoring my thyroid, I was able to get off the medication for good, and my Graves’ Disease went into remission.

    I consider myself one of the lucky ones, as other people have had to get their thyroid removed, and/or be on medication for the rest of their lives to get back to normal, while my time of suffering was fairly short.

    I asked Dr. Block for this article about why I gained weight, and she confirmed she had “Graves’ patients that gain weight ,” and said that some of them were also “exhausted,” the way I was. I’m glad to finally learn that I wasn’t alone here.

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