Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) Test
Sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) – a glycoprotein produced by the liver, circulates in the blood as a carrier protein for transporting testosterone and estrogen to different tissues and organs throughout the body. The SHBG test measures the levels of the protein in the bloodstream. It is usually recommended in conjunction with a total testosterone test to determine the levels of testosterone accurately.
Why is the test ordered?
The test may be ordered to help assess abnormal testosterone levels in both men and women. In association with the other tests, the SHBG test helps in assessing the condition of an individual’s sex hormones. It is useful in the diagnosis of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) in women. In men, the test may be useful in determining the cause for diminishing sex drive, erectile dysfunction or infertility.
When is the test ordered?
The test may be ordered mainly if the total testosterone results are inconsistent with the typical signs and symptoms such as infertility, low libido, and erectile dysfunction in men or irregular menstrual cycle, infertility and excess facial and body hair in women.
How is the sample collected?
A blood sample is collected from a vein in the arm.
How to prepare for the test?
No special preparations are required for this test.