Healthcare providers often advise you to take a DHEAS test to diagnose any problem with your Adrenal glands or estrogen/androgen levels. The test also helps diagnose other related diseases like Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), adrenal tumors, or Addison’s disease. Continue reading to learn more about: What is DHEAS? What does the DHEAS test cost? And who might need it?
What is the DHEAS test?
Dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) in your blood is measured via a DHEAS test. DHEA sulfate is a hormone found in all sexes which generally peaks around puberty and descends naturally with aging. Your two Adrenal glands, the testicles in males and ovaries in females, produce the total amount of DHEA in your body. This test is often used to check if Adrenal glands are working normally and if you’re producing the optimal amount of DHEA sulfate required.
Symptoms of High or Low levels of DHEAS
Having higher levels of DHEAS can be just as harmful as having low levels of them. It is required to maintain an optimal balance for the proper functioning of your Adrenal glands. If your DHEAS levels are high, you may see symptoms in women, such as:
- Abnormal menstruation
- Early puberty
- Excessive hair growth
- Severe acne
- Vaginal atrophy
- Fertility issues
Whereas, if your DHEAS levels are lower than normal, you might notice the following:
- Dehydration issues
- Dementia and diabetes
- Sexual and erectile dysfunction
- Salt cravings
- Unexpected weight loss
DHEAS Test Cost
Generally, the cost for the DHEAS test depends on the lab and the city you’re in. The prices may vary from Rs 650/- to Rs 1200/-. Most of the professional and trusted labs around the country can provide you the accurate results within the price range of around Rs 1000/-
How to get ready for a DHEAS test?
The test generally takes 5 to 15 minutes, including a blood draw. Some healthcare providers might use the same blood draw to run other important tests to check hormone levels, etc.
DHEAS levels are generally constant throughout the day. External factors like your diet or time do not impact the test results much unless you have a special case or something that needs to be explicitly examined. Even though some medicines or diets may increase or decrease the DHEAS level, you can always confirm with your doctor first if they have any special instructions regarding the timing of the test. Otherwise, you are good to go, just as it is.
What happens next?
Depending on the laboratory, your DHEA results should be out within a day or two. But what happens if your DHEAS values are lower or higher than expected? Well, it may require further testing to conclude if you have any disease or symptoms of potential disease. So, you should consult a doctor immediately and look for further advice as a higher DHEAS level may indicate:
- Ovarian cancer
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
- Adrenal tumors (Cancerous or non-cancerous)
- Congenital adrenal hyperplasia
And if the results show levels lower than normal, these could be the symptoms:
- Addison’s disease
- Pituitary Adenomas
If you are diagnosed with any of the diseases, depending on the severity of the results, your health provider may ask you to consult a specialist who will guide you further.
A DHEAS test is relatively safe. It just requires a normal blood test which is generally not risky or painful; however, some people still encounter a few minor problems that can be treated or avoided without complications. Some common problems which a patient may encounter are:
- Feeling nauseous or fainting.
- Hematoma (Blood lump or bruise)
- Pain caused by vein puncture for drawing blood.
Some people are also afraid of needles, especially kids. Let yourself or your child ask as many questions as possible to ease the process, as tensing muscles or clenching due to fear may cause problems during the blood test. Being calm and relaxed is the key to avoiding pain or further complications.
About DHEA supplements
Some studies have concluded that DHEA supplements may help with aging, vaginal atrophy, and treating depression by balancing the DHEAS levels required. However, there’s not much evidence to support the mentioned claims. It is recommended to avoid DHEA supplements and rather consult a doctor to get natural tips for maintaining DHEAS levels.
DHEA supplements may even cause some severe side effects. You should rather bear the DHEAS test cost and consult a doctor than purchasing expensive supplements which may not even help you.
It is likely that you may face some side effects. These supplements can cause severe acne, unwanted hair growth, and oily skin.
Depending on the severity, age, medical history, and other factors, many DHEAS-related diseases can be diagnosed easily. There is no reason to panic or lose hope. Simple things like eating healthy and exercising can help you maintain your hormone level; even if you fail, medical science is always there to help. If you are not sure about it, always consult a doctor and never ignore any symptoms.
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