Delivery of the bioidentical hormones estradiol (E2), progesterone (Pg), and testosterone (T) through the skin as a cream or gel (topically) has become a mainstay of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) for women and men. A plethora of FDA-approved pharmaceuticals, compounded, and even over-the-counter topical BHRT products are available. The popularity of these products lies not only…

Tags: Bioidentical Hormones, Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone, Dried Urine Testing, Blood Spot Testing, Serum Testing, Saliva Testing


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Topical Delivery of Sex Steroid Hormones and Distribution in Different Body Fluids

One of ZRT's most popular tests includes diurnal assessment of a patient's salivary cortisol levels. On the surface, these tests seem easy enough to interpret, but experienced clinicians know there can sometimes be pitfalls. Patients testing cortisol in a clinical setting may take undisclosed medications, live under stressful conditions, have inflammation, genetic variations, tumors, and diseases.…

Tags: Stress, Saliva Testing, Adrenal and Cortisol


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Avoiding 3 Common Interpretation Pitfalls for Salivary Cortisol Tests

I wanted to share a few of the studies using saliva testing that were published in the literature in 2016. Just a hint, if you want to search for articles on saliva testing, use pubmed.gov and search saliva estradiol (or progesterone, testosterone etc.). Be aware that saliva hormone testing is so standard in the research world that rarely is it mentioned in the titles of the papers. Over 310…

Tags: Saliva Testing, Research, Estrogen, Testosterone, Progesterone, DHEA, Adrenal and Cortisol


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A Year of Saliva Testing in Research

It may come as a surprise to most people that each year, the last full week of April is dedicated to recognizing and celebrating laboratory professionals. This year Medical Laboratory Professionals Week falls on April 24-30. Setting aside one week a year to acknowledge these experts is a perfect opportunity to increase public awareness of, and appreciation for, clinical laboratory personnel. Just…

Tags: Laboratory Quality, Saliva Testing, Dried Urine Testing, Blood Spot Testing


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Celebrating ZRT's Hormone Laboratory Professionals

Treatment TakeawayOn awakening cortisol should increase about 50% in the first 30 minutes then begin to progressively drop the remainder of the day. Three, rather than one, early morning collections are what is needed to accurately assess the CAR; one immediately on waking, one 30 minutes later, and another at 1 hour. Thirty minutes after awakening from a good…

Tags: Stress, Cortisol Awakening Response, Saliva Testing, HPA Axis, Adrenal and Cortisol


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How to Use the Cortisol Awakening Response (CAR) in Addressing Adrenal Function

CLIA-certified testing laboratories such as ZRT are required to provide reference ranges as an aid to interpretation of test results. Ideally, reference ranges provide the expected range of values for a healthy population. When methodology and equipment is identical for testing a particular analyte among different laboratories, reference ranges for that analyte should be the same. However, when…

Tags: Dried Urine Testing, Saliva Testing, Blood Spot Testing, Research


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How Reference Ranges Determine a "Normal" Lab Test Result

Practice Takeaway: Providers should be aware that three different body fluids – saliva, blood or urine – can be used to assess adrenal gland function, and should know each method’s advantages and disadvantages, when deciding how to test patients. Inadequate or excessive production or disrupted circadian patterns of cortisol synthesis by the adrenal glands in response to stressors can eventually…

Tags: Dried Urine Testing, Saliva Testing, Blood Spot Testing, Stress, Adrenal and Cortisol


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Cortisol Testing in Saliva, Blood & Urine

Symptoms of hormonal imbalance can often be challenging to assess. Is your patient exhibiting signs of estrogen dominance because her estrogen is too high or is it due to the progesterone being too low? Is his fatigue because he’s not making enough testosterone or that his adrenal glands are working over-time? Are her imbalanced sex steroids the cause of her depression or is it the low thyroid…

Tags: Hormone Balance, Saliva Testing, Blood Spot Testing, BHRT


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How to Use a Symptom Checklist to Choose a Hormone Test

When ZRT Saliva test kits arrive at your practice or pharmacy, you probably aren’t wondering about the journey they took to get there. But what if you learned that along the way, their assembly created jobs for individuals with developmental disabilities? ZRT saliva test tubes are hand assembled by a team at Edwards Enterprises, an organization that provides meaningful, self-affirming employment to…

Tags: Saliva Testing, Laboratory Quality


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The Journey of a Saliva Test Tube

I love mysteries. But unlike the advances in forensic science that have caused a sea change in solving murders previously only fathomable by sleuths such as Hercule Poirot, the advances in laboratory testing methods have outpaced the ability of the medical community to unravel the controversial mysteries surrounding absorption of steroid hormones. How did the Mystery Start? This ultimately stems…

Tags: Hormone Balance, Saliva Testing, BHRT, Patient Education, Menopause


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The Strange Case of the Disappearing Hormone

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