Walk-In Lab’s DHEA sulfate plus test is a special, send-out test that determines if the dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate plus (DHEA,s+) concentration in the blood is normal. It can also be used to evaluate adrenal gland function. This test is often ordered along side the DHEA blood test.
The DHEA sulfate plus test also goes by other names such as, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate plus, DHEA,s+, DHEA-S and DHEA-S04. No fasting is required when preparing for this blood test. Walk-In Lab sends the DHEA sulfate plus test out to Esoterix for processing, so results may take five to seven days. For patients without insurance or without a doctor’s order, the DHEA sulfate blood test is a cost-efficient and confidential option.
Dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEA-S) is an androgen, or male sex hormone, that is present in the blood of both men and women. At puberty, DHEA-S aids in the development of male secondary sexual characteristics, and can be metabolized by the body into more potent androgens, such as testosterone and androstenedione, or changed into the female hormone estrogen. The outer layer of the adrenal glands (the adrenal cortex) is the main producer of DHEA sulfate, while womens ovaries and mens testes produce smaller amounts. The pituitary hormone adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and other pituitary factors control the secretion of DHEA-S. Since DHEA sulfate is primarily produced by the adrenal glands, measuring its levels can indicate adrenal function. Hyperplasia, adrenal tumors and some cancers can lead to excess production of DHEA-S. Elevated levels of DHEA sulfate are sometimes not noticed in adult men, but can lead to visible symptoms of virilization and amenorrhea.
What Is the Difference Between DHEA sulfate and DHEA?
The main difference between these two steroid hormones is that DHEA has an extra sulfate molecule attached to it, while DHEA-S is a steroid androgen found in both men and women. The body can convert DHEA-S into DHEA with the enzyme, steroid sulfatase. The reverse is also possible, where the body can change DHEA back into DHEA sulfate.