Hormone Profiles are multiple hormone tests, which provide Dr. Haendiges with a complete picture of your hormone levels. These levels show the hormonal balances, which cause all of the unwanted and uncomfortable side effects such as fatigue, hot flashes, loss of sex drive, depression, anxiety; the list is endless. Instead of treating a secondary hormonal imbalance caused by an abnormality in only one of the hormonal symptoms, Dr. Haendiges is able to treat the underlying issues that lie at the root of the problem. The following hormones can be tested through saliva testing and hormone profiles.
Estrogen and Progesterone
Estradiol (E2) and progesterone (Pg) levels and their ratio are an index of estrogen/progesterone balance. An excess of estradiol (relative to progesterone) results in a condition called estrogen dominance. Symptoms of estrogen dominance can be seen in reproductive age women and include endometrial hyperplasia, PMS, uterine fibroids and fibrocystic breasts.
In older women who use estrogen supplements alone, a deficiency in progesterone can also result in symptoms of estrogen dominance, which include weight gain in the hips and thighs, fibrocystic and tender breasts, uterine fibroids, irritability, water retention, and thyroid problems.
These symptoms can also be seen in women approaching menopause, as their levels fluctuate from high to low without the balancing effect of progesterone. If estrogen dominance is not corrected, it can lead to cancers of the breasts and uterus.
With menopause, a new list of symptoms can result from low estradiol levels including vaginal dryness, hot flashes, night sweats, foggy thinking, sleep disturbances, rapid skin aging and bone loss.
It is essential to maintain appropriate levels of estrogen to progesterone at any age to achieve optimal health.
Testosterone (T) levels can also be either too high or too low. Ovarian cysts often cause excess testosterone, which results in conditions such as excessive facial and body hair, oily skin and hair, and acne. Polycystic ovarian syndrome is thought to be caused, in part, by insulin resistance.
On the other hand, too little testosterone is often caused by excessive stress, medications, contraceptives and surgical removal of the ovaries. This leads to symptoms of androgen deficiency including loss of sex drive, vaginal dryness, loss of bone and muscle mass, depression, thinning skin, and memory lapses.
Cortisol (C) is an indicator of adrenal function and exposure to stressors. Under normal circumstances, adrenal cortisol production takes place during daytime activity and is highest early in the morning, immediately after waking, falling to lower levels in the evening.
Normal cortisol production allows a healthy ability to respond to stress. Low cortisol levels can indicate adrenal fatigue, which is the body’s reduced ability to respond to stressors or stressful situations. Adrenal fatigue can result in poor blood sugar regulation and immune system dysfunction.
Chronically high cortisol is a consequence of high, constant exposure to stressors, and this has serious implications for long-term health, including an increased risk of cancer, osteoporosis, and possibly Alzheimer’s disease.
The Thyroid profile includes free T4, free T3, TSH and TPO. It can indicate the presence of an imbalance in thyroid function, which can cause a wide variety of symptoms, including feeling cold all the time, low stamina, fatigue, depression, low sex drive, weight gain, and high cholesterol. Thyroid deficiency can also be a cause of infertility, which is why these tests are included in the Female Fertility Profiles.
DHEA (DS) is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands, and levels generally reflect adrenal gland function. It is a precursor for the production of estrogens and testosterone. Its production is highest in the late teens to early 20′s, and declines gradually with age. It is normally present in greater quantities than all the other steroid hormones. Like cortisol, the balance between immune function and DHEA is essential. Low DHEA can result in decreased sex drive and depression. High DHEA can have masculinizing effects on women because it metabolizes to androgens, including testosterone.
SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin) 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 food or herbs. SHBG is released from the liver into the bloodstream and binds tightly to circulating estradiol and testosterone, which prevents their rapid metabolism and limits their bioavailability to tissues. SHBG gives a good index of the extent of the body’s overall exposure to estrogens. The SHBG level is also used to calculate free (unbound) testosterone levels when blood spot is used instead of saliva to measure sex hormones.
LH and FSH
LH and FSH tests are included in the Female Fertility Profiles to give information on the possible presence of ovarian insufficiency (elevated FSH) or PCOS (elevated LH/FSH).
Hormone Profiles Available At Haendiges & Associates
At your consult appointment with Dr. Haendiges, together, you will decide which Hormone Profile is best for you. Listed below are the available Hormone Profiles.
Comprehensive Female Profile I
Saliva tests: E2, Pg, T, DS, Cx4
Blood spot tests: fT4, fT3, TSH, TPO
Comprehensive Female Profile II
Saliva tests: Cx4
Blood spot tests: E2, Pg, T, SHBG, DS, fT4, fT3, TSH, TPO
Female Fertility Profile I
Saliva tests: E2, Pg, T, DS, Cx4
Blood spot tests: fT4, fT3, TSH, TPO, LH, FSH
Female Fertility Profile II
Saliva tests: Cx4
Blood spot tests: E2, Pg, T, SHBG, DS, fT4, fT3, TSH, TPO, LH, FSH
Saliva Profiles (do not include thyroid hormones)
Saliva Profile I: E2, Pg, T, DS, morning C
Saliva Profile II: E2, Pg, T, DS, Cx2 (morning and night)
Saliva Profile III: E2, Pg, T, DS, Cx4 (diurnal)
Blood Spot Profiles
Female Blood Spot Profile I: E2, Pg, T, SHBG, DS, C
Female Blood Spot Profile II: E2, Pg, T, SHBG, DS, C, fT4, fT3, TSH, TPO