What Affects the Test
Reasons you may not be able to
have the test or why the results may not be helpful include:
Taking medicines such as estrogen (including birth control
pills), testosterone, corticosteroids, digoxin (Lanoxin), spironolactone
hyperthyroidism. This can raise sex hormone binding
globulin (SHBG) levels.
Hypothyroidism can lower SHBG levels.
Taking medicines to treat prostate cancer.
Taking medicines that raise
prolactin levels, such as certain seizure
medicines. What To Think About
If the total testosterone level is low, more testing may be done to find the cause.
The levels of other hormones made by the pituitary gland, such as
follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and
luteinizing hormone (LH), may be checked to see
whether a low testosterone level is caused by problems with the testicles or
ovaries or the pituitary gland. A really high level of
LH and a low level of testosterone often means that the testicles or ovaries
are not working properly. This is the pattern seen in women after menopause when their ovaries stop working. A low LH level and a really low or high testosterone
level may mean a problem with the pituitary gland.
To learn more, see:
Fischbach FT, Dunning MB III, eds. (2009). Manual of Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests, 8th ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins. Other Works Consulted
Chernecky CC, Berger BJ (2008). Laboratory Tests and Diagnostic Procedures, 5th ed. St. Louis: Saunders.
Fischbach FT, Dunning MB III, eds. (2009). Manual of Laboratory and Diagnostic Tests, 8th ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.
Pagana KD, Pagana TJ (2010). Mosby’s Manual of Diagnostic and Laboratory Tests, 4th ed. St. Louis: Mosby Elsevier.
Primary Medical Reviewer
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
Alan C. Dalkin, MD - Endocrinology
May 17, 2012
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
May 17, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
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