Explaining the Benefits of Hormonal Testing to Premenopausal Patients
- September 28, 2022
As you consult with middle-aged women about transitioning to the premenopausal years, a time also known as perimenopause, remember hormone testing is a beneficial baseline assessment of their current health status. These results can impact your treatment plan for managing the symptoms of perimenopause and, eventually, menopause.
Here’s who should be educated about testing, three benefits to share with patients, and which tests you might consider ordering.
Candidates for Premenopausal Hormone Testing
If your patient is commenting on bothersome symptoms, there are many treatments to consider, including hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Although controversial in some medical clinics, HRT is one method of managing debilitating hot flashes, or the onset of excessive body heat, that can leave patients unable to get quality sleep and focus on daily life tasks. Women in this category are definite candidates for premenopausal hormone testing.
Perimenopause can start in a woman’s 30s or early 40s. A final transition to menopause — defined by having no menses for 12 consecutive months — usually occurs in the early 50s. As a reminder, women with autoimmune disorders or ovarian disorders may have an early onset of perimenopause.
3 Benefits of Offering Premenopausal Hormone Testing
During the premenopausal years, the body chemistry shifts, and medical conditions that were never a concern before may bubble up, including low estrogen levels, heart disease, and osteoporosis. Hormone testing can give you a biological snapshot of what’s happening inside the body, so you can then discuss appropriate next steps for improved wellness.
Benefit 1: Hormonal testing confirms actual hormone level fluctuations.
A premenopausal patient may be second-guessing the changes she’s noticing in her body. Mentally, it can be difficult for a woman to accept that her reproductive years and menses are ending and that what she’s experiencing is completely normal.
Having hormone testing results in-hand helps you move forward with biological data — not just a list of symptoms — as a foundation for your treatment plan. Testing confirms if the female sex hormones are indeed dipping, giving you a concrete indicator of perimenopause. Some patients literally need to see these results to accept this new season in life.
Benefit 2: Hormonal testing triggers symptom reduction planning.
Explain to your patients that testing can help to diagnose (or eliminate suspicion of) hormonal root causes behind several premenopausal symptoms, including:
- Bone density loss
- Dry skin
- Heart disease (rise in LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, decrease in HDL cholesterol)
- Irregular period cycles
- Night sweats
- Urinary incontinence
- Vaginal Dryness
- Weight gain
Benefit 3: Hormonal testing is the first step in a successful treatment.
Knowing specific hormone levels means you can recommend targeted treatments including HRT, alternative therapies (acupuncture, relaxation techniques), herbs, hormone therapy (HT), bioidentical hormone therapy (BHT) or menopausal hormone therapy (MHT).
Patients appreciate hearing an actionable plan to help them feel better and best prepare for the bodily changes they will notice during perimenopause. Share that you will be their ally, every step of the way. Remember, this transition can be an emotional time for women.
Hormonal Testing Options for Premenopausal Patients
If you feel your patient is a candidate for hormonal testing, and they would like to know more, consider the following options from Access Medical Labs:
- NextGen Female Panel (S59): This salvia test evaluates Estradiol, Estriol, Estrone, Progesterone, Testosterone, Cortisol, DHEA and Melatonin.
- NextGen Menopause Panel (S75): This saliva test evaluates Estradiol, Estriol, Estrone, Progesterone, Testosterone, Cortisol, DHEA-Sulfate, Melatonin, Androstenedione and 17-OH Progesterone.
- Female EvaluatoR Panel (S84): This saliva test tracks hormone levels over multiple readings, including estradiol (11 readings over 28 days, female cycle), progesterone (11 readings over 28 days, female cycle), DHEA-Sulfate and Testosterone.
- The Hormone BluePrint Panel (4350): This saliva test tracks the following readings:
- Testosterone x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- DHEA x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- Estrone x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- Estradiol x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- Estriol x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- Progesterone x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- DHT x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- Cortisol x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- Androstenedione x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- 17-OH Progesterone x 4 Readings Over Four Days
- Melatonin AM x 4 Readings Over Four Days
If you have questions about which panel is right for your patient, please contact our specialists for recommendations. We offer a physician’s text line, email, phone, and fax options. You may also learn more about our precision testing solutions for physicians here.
More About Dr. Ghen
Mitchell Ghen, DO, Ph.D. has 33 years of experience in Anti-Aging and holistic and integrative medicine. Along with his work in nutritional medicine, “Dr. Mitch” has a remarkable amount of experience as an expert clinician and researcher in the field of stem cell transplantation.
In addition to being a physician, Dr. Mitch holds a Master’s Degree in Biomechanical Trauma and has a Ph.D. in nutrition and psychoneuroimmunology. He is an international lecturer on oral and IV nutrition and stem cell transplantation and is recognized as one of the premier teachers at conferences and seminars on integrative medicine. His private practice is in Boca Raton, Florida.
Dr. Mitch’s vast academic knowledge, coupled with his entertaining delivery, makes him one of the most sought after personalities in his field. Currently, he is a medical director for several Natural Medicine companies and a consultant for physicians worldwide, teaching them how to implement integrative medicine into their practices.
He is the co-author of four textbooks including the “Advance Guide to Longevity Medicine,” “The Ghen and Raine’s Guide to Compounding Pharmaceuticals,” “The Anti-Aging Physicians’ Handbook for Compounding Pharmaceuticals,” and “The Essentials and Science of IV Parenteral Medicine.”