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Old 10-19-2008, 08:33 PM   #1
Ninagrrl
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Default Hormones that cause male pattern hair.

So I know that the chances of it being testosterone are slim to none because I had my total testosterone tested CD2 and it came back normal. My question is what other hormones could cause male pattern hair, specifically facial hair. I go to see my doctor after the end of this cycle and I just want to have some ideas to go on when I go in there. If anyone has any ideas, I'd like to hear them even if you don't know if it is a fact or not. Any input would be appreciated.
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Old 10-20-2008, 06:55 AM   #2
sweetsunshine72
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It could still be testosterone - but in a different way. Sex Hormone Binding Globulin is a hormone that binds to androgens like testosterone so that the body can use it in one way, and what is not "bound" can end up affecting you in another way - like your hair. I had the same issue, where technically, my testosterone is fine, but my SHBG, while technically "normal" is 1/2 of what my endo would expect in a woman my age.

Another issue that can affect us is the testosterone:estrogen ratio - if your estrogen is too low COMPARED to the testosterone, you can have hair issues, too. This is more common in "Thin Cysters" who truely do not have an Insulin Resistance issue (something like 10 - 15% of us).

Insulin Resistance is the main cause of PCOS for almost all of us, and most good PCOS docs will simply assume that you do, indeed, have it and treat for it. Treatment starts with a low-GI-type diet and exercise, and most of us also take Metformin (an insulin re-sensitizer). It's the excess insulin from the IR that causes the hormone imbalances in the first place, so by treating the IR, you can treat the cause of the symptoms, including hair.

Studies have found that even in "Thin Cysters", treatment with Metformin can still help with hair issues. Here's a link that can help explain it: http://www.jarrettfertility.com/PCOS...%20handout.pdf

Many family docs and even gyn's do not have the extra training to recognize and "read between the lines" on test results, so I would really recommend you see an Endocrinologist (or a Reproductive Endo if you're TTC). When I finally found mine, it was like night and day!!! All of my test results always came back "normal", but I KNEW I was NOT normal!!! Finally, when I saw my Endo, he SAW what was going on, and was able to explain it all!!!

HTH!!!
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Old 10-20-2008, 08:30 AM   #3
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Yep, me too! Test results always came back normal. Except my insulin had never been tested and neither had my estrogen level. When I finally made it to an RE tests showed mild insulin levels and very low estrogen.
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Old 10-20-2008, 04:52 PM   #4
Ninagrrl
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An Endocrinologist won't see me because I need a referal since I have no insurrance.. I've already tried going that route. I don't know what else to do and my symptoms are progressing but not many docs take me seriously and the ones that do always come up with normal test results. They always check my testosterone, thyroid and do a fasting glucose on me. All come back normal. I've been charting my cycle for insite even though I'm not currently TTC. This information helps a lot, though. Thank you.
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Old 10-21-2008, 06:39 AM   #5
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A lot of us have to self-medicate, unfortunately, even me (and I live in Canada where the doctor visits themselves are free) until I found my endo! I ended up finding him because my DH took sick and (long story short) became diabetic and had a LOT of trouble being controlled, so he was sent to an endo. I went with him, we had a good talk, and I asked him if he treated PCOS. He said yes, and that, although he needed the referal from my family doc first, he would take me, too. My family doc was one of those ones who doesn't have a clue about PCOS, and said I was "normal", but he was willing to give the referal.

Maybe you can do something similar? Go back to a doc who at least took you seriously, and ask for a referal to an endo, at least for evaluation. Point out that SOMETHING MUST be going on because you have such-and-such happening, and that you just want to figure out what's happening. It can't hurt to ask, right? In the meantime, start with the lifestyle changes suggested here and on the FAQ's sticky. No matter what is going on, it should at least provide a stable base to work from.

Hang in there!!!
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2200-hour program in Canada
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Also:
DS (1992)
Diagnosed PCOS 1994
Cannot tolerate BCP
No treatment for 12 years
Now, Metformin 1,500 mg/day, Fish Oil, D3, good multi
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Old 10-21-2008, 06:25 PM   #6
Ninagrrl
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Thank you, again. I'm sure I can use my charts. I'll have 2 by the time I see her again but it might be just enough for her to see that there is a strong possibility that I have something wrong. That means further looking. I've only seen her twice.
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