Study of major significance unlocks the door to the complex role of how hormones work in women and demonstrates steep decline of hormones in early reproductive years.
Findings from the Australian based Jean Hailes Foundation will be presented this week at the Endocrine Society's 86th Annual Meeting that establish normal hormone levels in women across the life span.
This definitive study is part of the Sue Ismiel International Study into Women's Health and Hormones, involving 1423 women aged 18 – 75, documenting how hormone levels change as women age, and the relationships between various hormones and lowered mood, libido and sense of well-being.
Until now there was no base platform for androgen levels across the female life span. "We think hormones in women have important positive effects on mood, our general well-being, energy levels and libido but no-one has ever done a study in women aiming to directly relate these to hormone levels in the blood," said Dr Sonia Davison, Endocrinologist at The Jean Hailes Foundation.
"Using a sensitive method to measure testosterone we report values for women across ages from the community and demonstrate that DHEAS, total testosterone and free testosterone levels decline steeply in the early reproductive years, and do not vary as a consequence of natural menopause. "
Key outcomes of this study include:
- DHEAS (sex hormones) declines sharply in the early reproductive years
- There were no changes to androgen levels across the menopause years
- Data predictions indicate that androgens increase in older women 70+
It is of major significance to determine what normal hormone levels are in women of all ages, especially younger women, to relate this back to mood and sex drive and establish what it all means for women as they progress through life.
"We are yet to complete the Ismiel study in its entirety and whilst this doesn't portray the whole story just yet we are making head way in understanding how hormones work in women's bodies and the impact on their health and wellbeing," Dr Davison said.
The Jean Hailes Foundation is Australia's leading women's health organization. This study is funded as part of the Sue Ismiel International Study into Women's Health and Hormones.
*This abstract is the recipient of the prestigious "Women in Endocrinology Abstract Award" at this years Endocrine Society Meeting.*
For more information or to arrange an interview with Dr. Davison, please contact:
Natalene Muscat (media): m:61-41-600-0124
Media briefing notes, abstract available: http://www.jeanhailes.org.au/endo2004.htm
Source: Eurekalert & othersLast reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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