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Androstenedione is a steroid hormone produced in the adrenal glands and the gonads as an intermediate step in the biochemical pathway that produces the androgen testosterone and the estrogens estrone and estradiol. An Androstenedione test measures the amount of this hormone in the blood.

  • Test NameAndrostenedione
  • Sample TypeBlood
  • Preparations RequiredThe patient is advised to fast overnight before the test. However, the doctor's instructions should be followed diligently.
  • Report Time6 hours

What is the Androstenedione test?

The Androstenedione test is a blood test that measures the level of Androstenedione in the body. Androstenedione is a type of androgen, a group of hormones responsible for male characteristics. It is present in both men and women, but in different amounts. Androstenedione serves as a precursor in the production of testosterone, an essential hormone for the development of male characteristics and sexual function, and estrogens, the primary female sex hormones.

Why is the Androstenedione test done?

This test is often used to evaluate adrenal function and to distinguish between androgen-secreting conditions that are caused by the adrenal glands from those that are due to the ovaries in women. It can be particularly helpful for diagnosing conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), adrenal tumors, congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH), and other disorders that can cause excess production of androgen hormones.

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Frequently Asked Questions

The Androstenedione test is a standard blood draw. The healthcare provider will clean an area of your arm with antiseptic, apply a tourniquet to promote blood flow, then insert a needle into a vein to draw a blood sample. This sample is sent to a laboratory for analysis.

The results of an Androstenedione test are interpreted by considering the level of the hormone. Abnormally high levels of androstenedione can indicate a hormonal imbalance or specific medical condition. For instance, elevated levels of androstenedione in women can cause male physical characteristics to appear, a condition known as virilization.

High levels of Androstenedione, particularly in women, can indicate conditions such as PCOS or adrenal gland disorders. In men, elevated levels of androstenedione may be seen in adrenal carcinoma or hyperplasia. In both men and women, elevated levels may also be indicative of an adrenal tumor.

Low levels of Androstenedione are not typically cause for concern and may be seen in situations of adrenal insufficiency.

The risks associated with the Androstenedione test are minimal and are related to the blood draw process. These can include slight pain or bruising at the needle site, lightheadedness, or, in rare cases, infection.

If the results of your Androstenedione test are abnormal, your healthcare provider may recommend additional tests to further investigate the cause of the hormonal imbalance. This could include other hormone tests, imaging studies, or even a biopsy, depending on your symptoms and medical history.

To prepare for the Androstenedione test, it is typically recommended that the patient fast overnight before the blood draw. It is also important to discuss with your healthcare provider any medications, supplements, or hormones you are currently taking as these can impact test results.

Yes, certain medications, including hormone therapies, can impact your Androstenedione test results. If you are taking any medications, it's important to discuss this with your healthcare provider before the test.

The results of your Androstenedione test can help guide your treatment plan by providing important information about your hormone levels. This can be useful in diagnosing various medical conditions, monitoring the effectiveness of treatments, and providing insights into symptoms or issues you may be experiencing.

This information provided is for educational purposes and should not replace advice from a healthcare provider. Always consult with your healthcare provider for any questions or concerns about your health.

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