What is Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG)?
SHBG is a protein produced by the liver that binds to and transports sex hormones such as testosterone and estrogen in the blood. It plays a role in regulating the availability and activity of these hormones in the body.
Why is SHBG tested?
SHBG testing is typically done to evaluate the levels of testosterone and estrogen in the body and to help diagnose conditions related to these hormones. It may also be used to help assess the effectiveness of hormone replacement therapy.
What is a normal range for SHBG levels?
Normal ranges for SHBG levels vary based on age and sex. In general, normal SHBG levels in men are typically between 20-50 nmol/L, while normal levels in women are typically between 30-100 nmol/L. However, it is important to note that normal ranges may vary slightly depending on the specific laboratory that performs the test.
What factors can affect SHBG levels?
Several factors can affect SHBG levels, including age, sex, body weight, and certain medications. For example, SHBG levels tend to decrease with age and are generally lower in men than in women. Obesity and the use of certain medications, such as oral contraceptives and insulin, can also lower SHBG levels.
How is SHBG tested?
SHBG is typically measured through a blood test. A healthcare provider will draw a blood sample from a vein in the arm and send it to a laboratory for analysis.
Are there any risks associated with SHBG testing?
SHBG testing is generally considered a safe and routine procedure. The only potential risk is minor discomfort or bruising at the site of the blood draw.
What do high SHBG levels indicate?
High SHBG levels may indicate low levels of testosterone or estrogen in the body. High SHBG levels may also be seen in individuals with certain conditions, such as hyperthyroidism or liver disease.
What do low SHBG levels indicate?
Low SHBG levels may indicate high levels of testosterone or estrogen in the body. Low SHBG levels may also be seen in individuals with certain conditions, such as hypothyroidism or obesity.
Mayo Clinic. (2021). Sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/shbg/about/pac-20394432
Lab Tests Online. (2021). Sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). Retrieved from https://labtestsonline.org/tests/sex-hormone-binding-globulin-shbg
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. (2021). Sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). Retrieved from https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/infertility/conditioninfo/testsanddiagnosis/shbg
Cleveland Clinic. (2021). Sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). Retrieved from https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diagnostics/17125-sex-hormone-binding-globulin-shbg
American Association for Clinical Chemistry. (2021). Sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). Retrieved from https://www.aacc.org/education/resources/glossary/terms/sex-hormone-binding-globulin-shbg