This test is used to measure the amount of dehydroepiandrosterone present in the blood of an individual. Dehydroepiandrosterone is a precursor for sex hormone secreted by the adrenal glands present on the top of kidneys in an individual. This test is recommended by the doctor to evaluate early development of sexual characteristic in young boys and to evaluate the conditions like virilization (development of hair and male characteristics in women), amenorrhea (absence of menstrual periods) in women and to check the functioning of the adrenal glands or the presence of adrenal tumours, etc.
What is Dehydroepiandrosterone?
Dehydroepiandrosterone is secreted by the adrenal glands in the body. It is a hormone found in both men and women, which plays a role in the maturity and development of secondary sexual characteristics in adults. The hormone is converted into testosterone in men and estrogen in women. The hormone levels peak in adults by the age of 25- 30 and decrease gradually. The increased secretion of this hormone in young individuals (boys below the age of 10 yrs) causes precocious (early) puberty, the symptoms include deepening of the voice, early maturation of bones leading to shorter adult height, etc. The increased secretion of this hormone in women may cause the development of facial hair, irregular or painful menstrual periods, etc.
Why is this test recommended?
This test is recommended if your doctor suspects diseases or conditions like Adrenal insufficiency (adrenal glands do not produce enough steroid hormones), Male hypogonadism (decreased testosterone in adult men), polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), Hirsutism (excess of facial hair in women), amenorrhea (absence or late menstruation), etc.
Your doctor may recommend this test if you experience certain signs and symptoms like the development of facial hair and absence of menstrual periods in women, development of secondary sexual characteristics like deepening of the voice, development facial and body hair in boys below the age of 10 years, etc.
Inform your doctor if you are on any medications, have any allergies or underlying medical conditions before your DHEA Sulphate. Your doctor will give specific instructions depending on your condition on how to prepare for DHEA Sulphate.
No specific test preparations are necessary for this test. However, It is recommended to have this test be performed one week before or after menstrual periods in women.
Increased blood levels of Dehydroepiandrosterone in young boys below 10 years of age may indicate precocious puberty (early puberty).
Increased concentrations of Dehydroepiandrosterone in women may indicate conditions like polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), Hirsutism(excess of facial hair in women), amenorrhea (absence or late menstruation), etc.
Elevated levels of Dehydroepiandrosterone in adults can also be found in conditions like adrenal insufficiency, adrenal tumours, adrenal hyperplasia, etc.
No medical interventions are necessary if the test results are within the normal range, however, your doctor may recommend further diagnostic tests if necessary.
|MALE||All age groups||89 - 457 mcg/dl|
|FEMALE||All age groups||44 - 332 mcg/dl|