Testosterone, Free, Direct With Total Testosterone Blood Test, LC/MS-MS
The Testosterone, Free, Direct with Total Testosterone Blood Test, LC/MS-MS, measure the free and total testosterone in the blood to detect an abnormal level or hormone imbalance.
What is the purpose of this test?
Order this Testosterone, Free, Direct with Total Testosterone Blood Test, LC/MS-MS, to measure the free and total testosterone in the blood to detect an abnormal level or hormone imbalance. Testosterone is the primary hormone essential to developing male physical features and reproductive functions, such as:
- Development of body hair, muscle growth, and a deepening voice
- Regulate sex drive, sustain muscle mass, and helps produce sperm in the testes (testicles)
It should be noted that women also make testosterone but in much smaller amounts in the ovaries and adrenal glands. There are two major forms of testosterone in the body commonly measured to help diagnose specific health problems: free and total testosterone. Free testosterone is the active or unbound form of testosterone that acts as a receptor to cells in the body. However, total testosterone includes unbound and bound testosterone attached to proteins (SHBG or albumin).
Individuals may order this Testosterone, Free, Direct with Total Testosterone Blood Test, LC/MS-MS to:
- Determine the cause of early or late puberty in children and teens
- Determine the cause of infertility
- Monitor infertility treatments
- Monitor the health of transgender men taking testosterone for gender-affirming hormone therapy
What conditions cause abnormally low testosterone levels?
Several conditions may affect testosterone levels. Therefore, discussing concerns with a healthcare provider and using blood tests such as this to help monitor hormone levels is essential. For example, testosterone levels may be abnormally low due to conditions such as:
- Thyroid problems
- A tumor detected in the ovaries, adrenal glands, or testicles
- Autoimmune disorders
- A pituitary gland disorder
- Chronic or recurring illness (kidney or liver disease, lung disease)
- Acute infections
- Injury to the testicles
When should I order a Testosterone, Free, Direct with Total Testosterone Blood Test, LC/MS-MS?
Individuals may order a Testosterone, Free, Direct with Total Testosterone Blood Test, LC/MS-MS, when if they experience symptoms associated with a testosterone deficiency or hormone imbalance, such as:
- Loss of sex drive
- Erectile dysfunction or "ED"
- Enlarged breasts
- Lack of face or body hair
- Brittle bones or anemia without a known cause
- Muscle weakness
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