Hormone #2 Essential Blood Test Panel, Women
A Hormone #2 Essential Blood Test Panel for Women includes Estradiol, Progesterone, Cortisol, Follicle-stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing Hormone (LH), Testosterone Total & Free, Dehydroepiandrosterone Sulfate (DHEA,s) plus Thyroid panel with TSH, Free T4 & Free T3, Insulin Growth Factor IGF-1.
Menopause Panel includes:
Estrogen is a group of hormones primarily responsible for the development of female sex organs and secondary sex characteristics. There are three main estrogen fractions: estrone (E1), estradiol (E2), and estriol (E3). Estradiol (E2) is produced in women mainly in the ovary. In men, the adrenal glands and testes are the principal source of estradiol. In women, normal levels of estradiol provide for proper ovulation, conception, and pregnancy, in addition to promoting healthy bone structure and regulating cholesterol levels.
Progesterone is a steroid hormone whose main role is to help prepare a womans body for pregnancy; it works in conjunction with several other female hormones. Since progesterone levels vary predictably throughout the menstrual cycle, multiple (serial) measurements can be used to help recognize and manage some causes of infertility. Progesterone can be measured to determine whether or not a woman has ovulated, to determine when ovulation occurred, and to monitor the success of induced ovulation.
Cortisol is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands. Production and secretion of cortisol is stimulated by ACTH (adrenocorticotropic hormone), a hormone produced by the pituitary gland, a tiny organ located inside the head below the brain. Cortisol has a range of roles in the body. It helps break down protein, glucose, and lipids, maintain blood pressure, and regulate the immune system. Heat, cold, infection, trauma, stress, exercise, obesity, and debilitating disease can influence cortisol concentrations.
FSH and LH
Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) is made by the pituitary gland in the brain. Control of FSH production is a complex system involving hormones produced by the gonads (ovaries or testes), the pituitary, and the hypothalamus. In women, FSH stimulates the growth and maturation of ovarian follicles (eggs) during the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle. This cycle is divided into two phases, the follicular and the luteal, by a mid-cycle surge of FSH and luteinizing hormone (LH). Ovulation occurs shortly after this mid-cycle surge of hormones. During the follicular phase, FSH initiates the production of estradiol by the follicle, and the two hormones work together in the further development of the egg follicle. During the luteal phase, FSH stimulates the production of progesterone. Both estradiol and progesterone help the pituitary control the amount of FSH produced. FSH also facilitates the ability of the ovary to respond to LH. At the time of menopause, the ovaries stop functioning and FSH levels rise.
Testosterone, Total and Free
Small amounts are produced in women's ovaries and levels are tested to evaluate virilization. The concentration of free testosterone is very low, typically <2% of the total testosterone concentration. In most men and women, >50% of total circulating testosterone is bound to sex hormone-binding globulin, SHBG, and most of the rest is bound to albumin. Free testosterone is estimated in this test by a direct, analogue radioimmunoassay method. This assay uses a labeled testosterone analogue that has a low binding affinity for both SHBG and albumin but is bound by antitestosterone antibody used in the assay. Since the analogue is unbound in the plasma, it competes with free testosterone for binding sites on an antitestosterone antibody that is immobilized on the surface of the polypropylene tube.
Dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) is an androgen, a male sex hormone that is present in the blood of both men and women. It has a role to play in developing male secondary sexual characteristics at puberty, and it can be metabolized by the body into more potent androgens, such as testosterone and androstenedione, or can be changed into the female hormone estrogen. DHEAS is produced by the adrenal cortex, the outer layer of the adrenal glands, with smaller amounts being produced by the woman's ovaries and man's testes. DHEAS secretion is controlled by the pituitary hormone adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and by other pituitary factors. Since DHEAS is primarily produced by the adrenal glands, it is useful as a marker for adrenal function. Adrenal tumors, cancers, and hyperplasia can lead to the overproduction of DHEAS. While elevated levels may not be noticed in adult men, they can lead to amenorrhea and visible symptoms of virilization.
Thyroid Panel with TSH
Critical to your metabolism, thyroid function affects your energy level, heart rate, weight control, plus more. The thyroid-stimulating hormone is produced in the pituitary gland and serves to stimulate the production of thyroid hormones. The TSH helps identify an overactive or underachieve thyroid state. This comprehensive evaluation of your thyroid hormone levels includes: T-3 Uptake, T4, T7, and TSH. TSH is used to diagnose a thyroid disorder in a person with symptoms, screen newborns for an underactive thyroid, monitor thyroid replacement therapy in people with hypothyroidism, diagnose and monitor female infertility problems, help evaluate the function of the pituitary gland (occasionally), and screen adults for thyroid disorders, although expert opinions vary on who can benefit from screening and at what age to begin.
Tri-iodothyronine (T3) normally represents only approximately 5% of the thyroid hormone and like thyroxine is almost entirely bound to the carrier proteins, with only 0.25% of the total being in the free state. Measurement of free T-3 is of value in confirming the diagnosis of hyperthyroidism, when an elevated free or total thyroxine level is found. Abnormal total and free tri-iodothyronine concentrations may appear in T3 toxicosis, in the presence of normal thyroxine levels. Free T3 levels are unaffected by carrier protein variation.
The active form of thyroxine and it is thought by many to be a more accurate reflection of thyroid hormone function.
Somatomedin-C (SC) Produced in the liver in response to stimulation by growth hormone secreted by the pituitary gland. This insulin-like growth factor level is used to evaluate disturbances of growth and to monitor treatment with growth hormones.
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