- Seesaw is a perfect example of explaining a hormone. A slight imbalance can manipulate the overall equilibrium of body functions.
- Estrogen being a female hormone possess much significance and its level must lie within the normal ranges.
- The body reflects the high level of estrogen though many signs and symptoms that need to be considered at the appropriate time.
- As estrogen produces in both men and women, therefore, its high level is equally a troubling situation for both the genders.
Estrogen – A significant gonadal hormone
Estrogen is an essential steroid hormone that regulates the reproduction system in females. It is released by the pituitary gland in both males and females but estrogen is well known as the “female hormone” due to its high level in women as compared to men. Male have testosterone in contrast to estrogen. It is worth noting that here we mention “high level of estrogen in females” with respect to its comparison with males. For women there is some normal ranges and estrogen level must fall within these ranges otherwise it will cause a hormonal imbalance with several other complex health issues.
For a normal and healthy state of life, a perfect balance of hormones is necessary. Neither deficiency nor excess of any hormone production can lead you towards a healthy life.
Normal Ranges of Estrogen for Women
Estrogen levels are high in women as compare to men but still there is a normal range mentioned by Mayo medical laboratories, and estrogen level above these normal ranges will be considered as “ high” and requires medical attention and suggestion. In the blood, estrogen exists in its following 3 forms:
|Prepubescent female||< 29 pg/ml||< 20 pg/ml|
|Pubescent female||10 – 200 pg/ml||< 350 pg/ml|
|Premenopausal female||17 – 200 pg/ml||15 – 350pg/ml|
|Postmenopausal female||7 – 40 pg/ml||< 10 pg/ml|
Normal Ranges of Estrogen for Men
|Prepubescent male||< 16 pg/ml||< 13 pg/ml|
|Pubescent male||< 60 pg/ml||< 40 pg/ml|
|Adult male||10 – 60 pg/ml||10 – 40 pg/ml|
Why does Estrogen Level become High?
There are several factors that contribute to the high level of estrogen in the body. It may occur naturally due to the more production of estrogen along with other hormones like testosterone (in the male body) or progesterone (In the female body) due to hormonal imbalance. Certain medications also lead to high level of estrogen such as:
- Certain antibiotics
- Hormonal contraceptives
Women who take hormone replacement therapy to treat symptoms of menopause also sometimes face a high level of estrogen. Factors that contribute to increased estrogen level other than medications are:
- Liver disease
- Ovarian tumors
Sign and symptoms of high Estrogen in Women
The human body reflects the ongoing disturbance in it with the help of some prominent signs and symptoms. These signs and symptoms make individuals pay attention to their health status and to consult a doctor. In the same way, a high level of estrogen in the body of women is exhibited by some common signs and symptoms mentioned as follows:
- Abdominal bloating
- Tenderness and swelling in breasts
- Irregular menstrual cycles
- Low sex drive
- Fibrocystic lumps in the breast
- Mood swings
- Panic or anxiety attacks
- Memory problems
- Difficulty in sleeping
- Hair loss
- Cold hands or feet
Sign and Symptoms of High Estrogen in Men
Although estrogen is a female hormone its production also occurs in males. A healthy balance between estrogen and testosterone is required to regulate the possession of reproductions. High level of estrogen in male has also brought some clear sign and symptoms that are mentioned as follows:
- Erectile dysfunction
How to Diagnose High Level of Estrogen:
A high level of estrogen can be detected by a blood test. Your doctor or gynecologist will ask you to go for a blood test by a well-reputed family. This blood sample will be analyzed by the staff of the laboratory for hormone levels. As estrogen is resent in blood in three forms estrone, estradiol and estriol. Estriol is not detectable in women who are not pregnant, therefore, the value of estrone and estradiol are checked and matched with the above-mentioned normal ranges of estrogen in the body.
1. By medications
If a high level of estrogen in your body is due to hormone replacement therapy then your doctor must change the therapy plan or re-schedule it or try some other alternative medications. If the estrogen production becomes naturally high then such medicines are prescribed which are aromatase inhibitors and will block the enzyme aromatase that is responsible for converting androgens into estrogen. Such medicines include:
If you have estrogen-sensitive cancer that such type of cancer becomes worse with a high level of estrogen. In such cases, medicine like tamoxifen is prescribed to inhibit the binding of cancer cells with estrogen.
Another alternative option is to prescribe such medicine which blocks the ovaries from producing so much estrogen-like:
2. By surgery
Surgery is recommended in some specific conditions when patient life is at risk due to the overproduction of ovaries. For example, in the case of a patient having estrogen-sensitive cancer, doctors take the decision to remove the ovaries as it produces most of the estrogen in the female body. This process is known as oophorectomy i.e removal of ovaries by surgery.
Oophorectomy is also a choice of treatment in those cases where:
- there is a high risk of developing ovarian or breast cancer
- when family history reveals the background of breast or ovarian cancer
- patient test positive for a specific mutation in BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene
3. By diet
Diet also helps to lower the high estrogen level in the body. You may be suggested to eat low fat and high fiber diet. Estrogen rich food or food that stimulate the production of estrogen should be avoided. Here is the list of estrogen rich foods that should be avoided or taken in the diet with extreme cautions:
- Flax seeds
- Dried fruits
- Soya beans
- Sesame seeds
High level of estrogen is not good for the health of an individual because it disturbs the other body functions as well as it also increases the risk of certain disease like
Before you leave!
Estrogen or the female hormone that is particularly responsible for regulating the process of reproduction and menstruation cycle in women is also responsible for a few complexities with its high level in the body . It should be taken into serious considerations by making visits to your family doctor or gynecologist. They will further confirm the presence or absence of high levels of estrogen in the body and move forward with treatment plans. Not only women but men can also suffer from this health issue due to the equal tendency of body cells to produce estrogen.
A student of Pharm D from University of Karachi. She has keen interest in all the attributes towards pharmacy especially community pharmacy and hospital pharmacy with an objective to make medications sound and safe. She loves to provide information about Pharmaceutical Analysis and Pharmacology in a best way so people with no medical background can understand.