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.
This test is taken in blood spot. The SHBG level is used to calculate free (unbound) testosterone levels when blood spot is used instead of saliva to measure sex hormones.
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?
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.
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.
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