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Comprehensive Blood Panel for Men Interested in Hormone Replacement Therapy


Written by Dr. Chris Smith, Updated on November 22nd, 2020
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In order to provide the best possible Hormone Therapy Diagnosis and Treatment, we require patients to undergo diagnostic blood testing to provide a clear image of your Hormone Needs and underlying health condition.

We work with LabCorp and Quest Diagnostics to complete the necessary preliminary testing. Fortunately, both companies have testing facilities in hundreds of locations all over America.

Your blood sample will be extensively analyzed to provide a vivid snapshot of your current health condition and hormone status.

Below is a list of tests that are included in the Male Diagnostic Blood Panel:

Comprehensive Blood Work Tests for Men Seeking Hormone Replacement Therapy

Testosterone Deficiency Tests

Total/Free Testosterone Tests

These tests determine the amount of Bio-Available Testosterone present in your bloodstream in both Free and Bound forms. Total Testosterone refers to all Testosterone present in the bloodstream. Free Testosterone refers only to Testosterone that is not bound to Sex hormone-binding Globulin.

The Total Testosterone Test determines the approximate volume of Testosterone in the bloodstream. The Free Testosterone Test estimates how much of that Total Testosterone is currently bio-available for use. These tests are used to diagnose Testosterone Deficiency, but other tests are necessary to narrow down the source of the deficiency.

SHBG Test

Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin binds to Testosterone, Estrogen, and Dihydrotestosterone for transport and inhibits the expression of sex hormones. Too much SHBG suppresses levels of active Testosterone, contributing to Low-T.

LH/FSH Tests

Luteinizing Hormone and Follicle-Stimulating Hormone are critical precursor hormones associated with healthy male physiology. Luteinizing Hormone triggers the testes to produce Testosterone via the Leydig Cells. Follicle-Stimulating Hormone, on the other hand, works with Testosterone to promote the production of sperm.

By analyzing LH/FSH Levels, your doctor can determine the source of your Testosterone Deficiency—Low levels of these hormones are associated with Secondary Hypogonadism. If LH/FSH Levels are normal and Testosterone Levels are low, Primary Hypogonadism is the usual diagnosis.

DHEA Sulfate Test

DHEA is the highest-volume steroid present in the bloodstream. DHEA is produced mostly by the adrenal glands. It is the base building block of both Testosterone and Estrogen. The DHEA Sulfate Test helps determine the normal function of the adrenal glands and determine the source of Sex-Hormone Imbalance.

Estradiol Test

Estrogen is important to male physiology in limited quantities. A particular balance of Estrogen and Testosterone is necessary to facilitate normal sexual function. In men, Estrogen Levels naturally increase as Testosterone Levels drop with age. If Estrogen Levels get too elevated, it can lead to symptoms associated with Low-T. Testing Estrogen Levels is important to help pinpoint the source of male dysfunction.

PSA Test

The Prostate-Specific Antigen Test is critical to determining the safety of Testosterone Therapy for the patient. Elevated PSA levels are associated with Prostate Cancer, and Testosterone Treatments can exacerbate existing Prostate Cancer. The PSA Test is used to screen potential HRT Patients for possible Prostate Cancer.

Cortisol Test

Cortisol is a stress hormone whose proper balance is vital to normal and healthy physiology. The hormone is released in response to both physical and psychological stressors, including fear, pain, and anxiety. Cortisol is a primary driver of the Fight-or-Flight Response. Elevated Cortisol Levels are associated with both Adrenal Fatigue and Low-T, and generally have a negative impact on health and quality of life.

Testing for HGH Deficiency

IGF-1 Test

Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 is the primary metabolite of Human Growth Hormone. It is also the most accurate means to measure approximate HGH Levels. Human Growth Hormone Production varies significantly throughout day/night, but IGF-1 Levels remain constant enough to be a reliable indicator of HGH Deficiency. The IGF-1 test is the gold standard for Growth Hormone Deficiency Diagnosis.

Fasting Insulin Test

Before being approved for Bio-Identical HGH Therapy, the patient must be evaluated for signs of Diabetes. The Fasting Insulin Test determines your baseline Insulin levels on an empty stomach. Insulin and Human Growth Hormone act as a unit to provide energy to the body. For patients with Diabetes or Low Insulin Sensitivity, the combination of elevated HGH and Insulin Levels can lead to problems.

Treating Insulin Resistance is vital to long-term positive health outcomes, and it's important to get Insulin Levels under control. Evidence suggests that HGH Deficiency increases the risk of Type-2 Diabetes, and Growth Hormone Deficiency management may help some patients.

A1C Glucose Test

The A1C Test is a commonly used test to determine average Glucose Levels in the bloodstream. By measuring glycated hemoglobin, it's possible to approximate median blood sugar levels over the last three months.

Thyroid Panel with TSH Test

The Thyroid is the control center for metabolism and energy utilization. The Thyroid Panel looks for signs/causes of Thyroid Hormone Imbalance.

TSH Test – Thyroid Stimulating Hormone triggers the production of T3/T4 by the Thyroid Gland. This test determines if TSH is being produced sufficiently by the Pituitary Gland.

Free/Total T4 Tests – Thyroxine (T4) is produced by the Thyroid Gland and is the precursor hormone of Tri-iodothyronine. Most T4 circulates in inactive/bound form until needed. Both T3 and T4 are intimately involved in metabolism and work to encourage an optimal metabolic rate.

Free/Total T3 Tests – T4 converts into its more potent and active form T3. As a whole, the Thyroid Panel helps your doctor determine whether you are suffering from Hypothyroidism or Hyperthyroidism, both of which negatively impact physiological function.

Plasma Homocysteine Test

Ideally, Homocysteine is present in trace amounts in the bloodstream and is used to help build protein. Certain lifestyle choices and high meat consumption can lead to Homocysteine elevation, which is associated with Atherosclerosis and an increased risk of stroke, deep vein thrombosis, heart attack, and pulmonary embolism.

Lipid Panel 

Series of Tests Designed to Measure Cholesterol/Triglyceride Levels:

  • HDL Cholesterol - “Good” Cholesterol Levels above 60 mg/dl are associated with good cardiovascular health.
  • LDL Cholesterol - “Bad” Cholesterol Levels above 100 mg/dl are a poor indicator of health and increase the risk of heart disease.
  • Total Cholesterol – Total Cholesterol Test helps determine the ratio of HDL/LDL Cholesterol.
  • Triglycerides – Triglycerides are a calorie storage intermediary. Levels above 200 mg/dl are correlated with increased heart disease risk.

Serum Ferritin Test

This test is used to determine if Iron Deficiency is negatively impacting your well-being. Iron is stored in the bloodstream in a protein compound known as Ferritin. The Serum Ferritin Test is used to help diagnose Anemia, Hemochromatosis, and Liver Disease.

Complete Blood Count with Differential

The Complete Blood Count is a panel of tests designed to determine a patient's state of cardiovascular function via a survey of several different types of blood cells.

  • Red Blood Cell Count – The vehicles of the oxygen/carbon dioxide transport system, facilitated by hemoglobin
  • Hemoglobin Test – Measures the protein component of the Red Blood Cells that carry oxygen/carbon dioxide.
  • Hematocrit Test – Determines the percentage of Red Blood Cells per blood volume. Testosterone Therapy can increase RBC count/volume, which can lead to complications in vulnerable individuals.
  • Platelet Test – Measures Platelet count in the blood. Platelets are responsible for clotting. Testosterone can both dilate blood vessels and increase platelet count, so it's essential to measure platelet count before initiating treatment to evaluate stroke/heart attack risk.
  • White Blood Cell Count – White Blood Cells are the immune defense force of the body. WBC Count determines the body's ability to ward off disease/illness.

Comprehensive Metabolic Panel

Collection of Tests Designed to Measure Levels of 14 Important Minerals/Organics:

Electrolytes

  • Chloride
  • Bicarbonate/Carbon Dioxide
  • Potassium
  • Sodium

Hepatic Function

  • Bilirubin
  • Alkaline Phosphatase
  • Aspartate Amino Transferase
  • Alanine Amino Transferase

Renal Function

  • Creatinine
  • Blood Urea Nitrogen

Other

  • Total Protein
  • Albumin
  • Calcium
  • Glucose
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