This simple blood test measures hormones which can indicate menopause or whether symptoms could be due to a thyroid condition.
The menopause can be a difficult time for many women, not just emotionally, but also mentally and physically with symptoms ranging from mood swings and anxiety to fatigue, weight gain and hot flushes.
A woman normally reaches menopause around the age of 51, but symptoms can start much earlier and can often be confused for other conditions. This test measures levels of key hormones such as FSH, LH and oestradiol to give an indication of menopause status. Thyroid hormones are also included as menopausal and thyroid symptoms can be similar. It is not uncommon for a thyroid condition to develop in the 40's or 50's so this test can give an insight into whether symptoms are due to menopause, thyroid or both.
This test is for women who want to investigate symptoms as well as women who wish to confirm that they have reached the menopause.
Symptoms of the menopause include hot flushes, lethargy, sleep disturbance and vaginal dryness. The severity of menopause symptoms vary. Some women have few menopause symptoms and others require treatment such as Hormone Replacement Therapy or HRT.
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone is produced in the pituitary gland and stimulates the thyroid gland to produce thyroid hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3).
High levels of TSH indicate an underactive thyroid while low levels indicate an overactive thyroid. In primary pituitary failure, a low TSH will be associated with an underactive thyroid.
Thyroxine (T4) is one of two hormones produced by the thyroid gland. Most T4 is bound to carrier proteins in the blood - this test measures the level of T4 which is free, or unbound, circulating in your blood.
High levels of free thyroxine can indicate an overactive thyroid while low levels can indicate an underactive thyroid.
Follicle Stimulating Hormone is produced in the pituitary gland and is important for women in the production of eggs by the ovaries and for men in the production of sperm. Levels of FSH rise in women as egg production declines, therefore raised FSH is an indicator of the onset of the menopause and a measure of ovarian reserve.
Raised levels of FSH in women indicate reduced egg supply whereas low levels can indicate that you are not ovulating or are preganant.
Levels of FSH in men rise in age, but can also indicate testicular damage and reduced sperm production. Low levels of FSH are detected when men are not producing sperm.
Luteinising Hormone (LH) is produced by the pituitary gland and is important for male and female fertility. In women it governs the menstural cycle, peaking before ovulation. In men it stimulates the production of testosterone.
Raised LH in women can signal that you are not ovulating, that you are menopausal or that your hormones are not in balance (as with polycystic ovaries).
Raised LH in men can signal that the testes are not producing enough testosterone.
Oestradial is a female steroid hormone which is produced in the ovaries of women and to a much lesser extent in the testes of men. It is responsible for the female reproductive system as well as the growth of breast tissue and bone thickness. Oestradiol declines with age, culminating in the menopause when the ovaries stop producing eggs.
Raised oestradiol in women can cause acne, constipation, loss of sex drive and depression as well as raising the risk of uterine and breast cancer.
Oestradiol can also be raised in men due to too much fat (which is oestradiol producing) or in relation to testosterone levels which have declined with age. Raised oestradiol can cause the growth of breast tissue, the loss of libido and infertility in men.
Low levels of oestradiol in women can lead to osteoporosis, problems with the menstrual cycle and fertility as well as fatigue and depression.
We will send you your Menopause Check finger-prick blood and sample collection kit which contains everything you need to take your blood and sample in the comfort of your own home. If you are unsure about completing a finger-prick blood sample collection you will have the opportunity to select a clinic-based venous blood sample option during the checkout process..
Your Menopause Check includes 1st class postage and packaging for you to send your blood and sample directly to our laboratory for analysis. If you live in an area where you cannot rely on the post or you simply want to ensure that your sample arrives at the laboratory the following day, you may wish to send your blood and sample guaranteed next day delivery for extra reassurance.