Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone (GnRH) Blood Test
The Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone (GnRH) test measures the levels of GnRH production.
This test measures the levels of GnRH production to help screen for a hormone deficiency or other fertility issues. GnRH is made by the hypothalamus gland and released into the bloodstream. The GnRH travels to the pituitary gland at the base of your brain, where it stimulates the gland to produce the follicle-stimulating (FSH) and luteinizing (LH) hormones. As a result, GnRH is often referred to as the luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH).
The FSH and LH hormones are essential to sexual development and functions. A primary role of FSH and LH hormones is to control testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone levels needed for reproduction. Exceptionally high levels of GnRH may result from benign tumors on the pituitary gland, called pituitary adenomas. Low levels of GnRH can cause inadequate production of FSH, LH, and other vital hormones.
Conditions associated with low GnRH levels include:
- Irregular menstruation
- Anovulation (no ovulation)
- Delayed sexual maturation and puberty
- Infertility (in females and males)
- Low sex drive (hypogonadism)
- Testicular disorders such as Kallman syndrome
This test is usually ordered for individuals experiencing infertility, women with abnormal menstruations, or men who have signs of low testosterone levels. Talk to your health care provider if you have questions about your results.
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