Summary: SHBG gives a good index of the extent of the body’s overall exposure to estrogens.
SHBG is a protein produced by the liver in response to exposure to any type of estrogen, whether produced naturally by the body, consumed as a synthetic oral contraceptive estrogen, estrogen therapy, or as foods or herbs (phytoestrogens).
Released from the liver into the bloodstream, SHBG binds tightly to circulating estradiol and testosterone, preventing their rapid metabolism and clearance and limiting their bioavailability to tissues. The SHBG level is also used to calculate free (unbound) testosterone levels when blood spot is used instead of saliva to measure sex hormones.
Price: $65.00 ( as of Jan. 2)
ZRT Product Name: SHBG
SHBG measurement is used as a relative index of overall exposure to all forms of estrogens. SHBG tested in concert with testosterone, is used to determine the bioavailable or free fraction of testosterone.
Why Test SHBG?
The test for Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) is primarily ordered in conjunction with other tests to evaluate the status of a person's androgen levels - the male hormones. With men, the issue of concern is testosterone deficiency, while with women the concern is excess testosterone production. A total testosterone may be ordered prior to or along with a SHBG test.
SHBG and testosterone levels may be ordered on an adult male to help determine the cause of infertility, a decreased sex drive, and erectile dysfunction, especially when total testosterone results are inconsistent with clinical signs.
In women, small amounts of testosterone are produced by the ovaries and adrenal glands. Even slight increases in testosterone production can disrupt the balance of hormones and cause symptoms such as lack of menstruation (amenorrhea), infertility, acne, and male pattern hair growth (hirsutism). These symptoms and others are often seen with polycystic ovarian syndrome, a condition characterized by an excess production of androgens. SHBG and testosterone testing may be useful in helping to detect and evaluate excess testosterone production and/or decreased SHBG concentrations.
For men, this individual test can be taken alone or in combination with any of our hormone profiles to monitor androgen activity when they are supplementing with testosterone. In men with low testosterone, the test can also help differentiate between testicular and pituitary causes of low testosterone. The test can also help determine possible causes for infertility or explain the onset of andropause symptoms.
Knowledge is the key to wellness
The lab will email you within 3-5 business days after they receive the samples for on-line access to your results.
Once you have your results, read our Interpreting Results article and consider consulting with a practitioner for next steps. Find out what you need to know and start your path towards recovery today.
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