What we measure
This test measures levels of key male hormones related to sexual health and fertility. They also play essential roles in maintaining muscle mass, red blood cell production, and fat distribution, and influence hair loss, mood, and more. When these hormones are out of balance it can cause a range of symptoms and contribute to health problems.
This test can help indicate whether you've got a hormone imbalance.
Hormones are chemical messengers that tell your body how it should function. They carry crucial instructions and information, and typically work in a finely-tuned balance with each other.
If something happens to upset that balance, it can bring on various symptoms and contribute to health problems. Sometimes, a hormonal imbalance is a sign of an underlying health issue, like thyroid disease.
In men, testosterone naturally declines after age 30, but it can drop more significantly for other reasons. A blood test can tell you whether your hormone levels are within the expected range for your age.
Anyone can take a male hormone test, but it may be recommended for people experiencing symptoms of abnormal testosterone. These include low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, and infertility.
what to expect
You’ll find out your levels of four key male hormones and SHBG, and whether these are within a healthy range. You’ll also get a calculation that shows how much testosterone is available to be used by the body (free androgen index).
These substances are measured in units that describe how much of each is present in your blood. For example, SHBG is usually measured in nanomoles per litre (nmol/L). What’s most important, though, is where your measurements sit in relation to the normal ranges.
If your readings are abnormal, this could indicate that you’ve got a hormone imbalance. This could help to explain any symptoms you’ve been experiencing or be suggestive of an underlying health problem.
Need help? Speak with an expert
Don’t quite understand your results or simply want to see a doctor? We’ve got you sorted.
Speak to a GP
Book an online consultation with one of our GPs. We offer consultations in both English and Chinese.
Just fill out an online form and find a time that’s convenient.
Get a private prescription
Need to get your medication? Our GPs can write private prescriptions.
Tell the GP what the problem is during your consultation and they’ll take it from there. Prescriptions can be picked up at your local pharmacy.
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Yes, you’ll need to refrain from eating or drinking anything except water for 8-10 hours before the test. This is because eating and digesting food can cause changes in the body that can interfere with your test results.
A blood test—whether you’re measuring testosterone, other hormones, or something else—only takes a few minutes to complete. If you’re doing a finger prick test, all you need to do is prick your finger and collect the blood that comes out; for a phlebotomy, you’ll just sit in a chair at your pharmacy as your health provider draws blood from your arm.
You’ll need to fast for 8-10 hours beforehand, meaning that you can’t eat or drink anything except water. You can eat as usual again after the test.
Because testosterone levels naturally vary across the day, it’s recommended that you take your test early in the morning, before 10am. This is when testosterone levels are at their highest.
You also need to fast before the test, so if you get it done in the morning then your time sleeping can count as time fasted. You can eat right away after the test is finished.
Blood tests are considered the gold standard for measuring levels of testosterone and other hormones. Our tests are as safe and accurate: we’re CQC regulated, which is a quality marker for trustworthy health services, and UKAS accredited. Each of our tests is validated by HCPC clinical scientists and GMC registered doctors.
Symptoms of testosterone deficiency in adult men include:
- Reduced body and facial hair
- Loss of muscle mass
- Low libido, impotence, reduced testicle size, reduced sperm count
- Erectile dysfunction
- Increased breast size
- Hot flashes
- Irritability, poor concentration and depression
- Brittle bones and increased risk of fracture
Excess testosterone is less common in men, but it’s been associated with the following:
- Aggressive or risk-taking behaviours
- Excessive body hair
- Liver problems
- Heart muscle damage and increased risk of heart attack
- High blood pressure and cholesterol
- High libido
- Low sperm count, impotence, shrinking of testicles
- Increased appetite
- Unexplained weight gain
- Mood swings
- Prostate enlargement, which may make it difficult to pass urine
- Swelling of the legs and feet due to fluid retention