Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Important Lab Tests for PCOS

Many women who have PCOS have not had the correct blood work done or don't know what blood tests to ask to have done.
I would like to post some important labs used to diagnose and monitor PCOS

1. Total testosterone (elevated levels are > 50ng/dl
2. Free testosterone
3. Luteinizing Hormone (LH) (plays a role in ovulation and egg development)
4. Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) (responsible for egg release from the ovaries)
5. LH/FSH ratio (results should be under 2)
6. DHEA-sulfate (this test tells how much androgens or "male hormones" your body is producing) DHEA sulfate converts into testosterone.
7. Prolactin
8. Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) this test will help to rule out hypo or hyperthyroidism (slow vs fast metabolism issues)
9. Liver Function tests (LFT's). Important since medications pass through the liver, to check for possible damages. Checking every 3-6 months is recommended.
10. Fasting Lipid Profile: Total Cholesterol (< 200 mg/dl is ideal)
High Density Lipoproteins (HDL) (>45 mg/dl is ideal)
Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL) (<130 mg/dl is ideal)
Triglycerides (fat in blood) (<150 mg/dl is ideal)
11. Fasting Insulin (results should be <10) difficult to do, it needs to be frozen when brought to the lab and tested before it reaches a certain temperature, expensive but would be very beneficial in determining and monitoring insulin resistance.
12. Fasting blood chemistry panel (includes glucose, electolytes and sometimes renal labs)
13. Fasting glucose to insulin ratio (used to diagnose and monitor insulin resistance, ratio under 4.5 usually indicated insulin resistance)

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