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DefinitionThe 17-ketosteroids test measures the amount of 17-ketosteroids in urine.
How the test is performedA 24-hour urine sample is needed.
The health care provider will instruct you, if necessary, to discontinue drugs that may interfere with the test.
Thoroughly wash the area around the urethra. Open a urine collection bag (a plastic bag with an adhesive paper on one end), and place it on the infant. For males, the entire penis can be placed in the bag and the adhesive attached to the skin. For females, the bag is placed over the labia. Diaper as usual over the secured bag. This procedure may take a couple of attempts -- lively infants can displace the bag, causing the specimen to be absorbed by the diaper. The infant should be checked frequently and the bag changed after the infant has urinated into the bag. The urine is drained into the container for transport to the laboratory.
Deliver it to the laboratory or your health care provider as soon as possible upon completion.
The lab analyzes the sample for the amount of 17-ketosteroids.
How to prepare for the testNo special preparation is necessary for this test, but if the collection is being taken from an infant, a couple of extra collection bags may be necessary.
How the test will feelThe test involves only normal urination, and there is no discomfort.
Why the test is performed
This test may be performed when any of the disorders associated with abnormal levels of the "male" steroid sex hormones (androgens) are suspected. 17-ketosteroids are metabolites (break-down products) of androgens and other steroid hormones that are secreted from the adrenal cortex. In men, most of the hormone metabolites come from the adrenal cortex and a smaller amount from the testes. In women and children, almost all androgens are derived from the adrenal cortex.
Normal values are as follows:
Note: mg/24 hr = milligrams per 24-hours
Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories.
What abnormal results meanIncreased levels of 17-ketosteroids may indicate:
What the risks areThere are no risks.
Special considerationsAcute emotional or physical stress can affect the result.
Drugs that can increase 17-KS measurements include: antibiotics, chloramphenicol, chlorpromazine, dexamethasone, meprobamate, phenothiazines, quinidine, secobarbital, and spironolactone.
Drugs that can decrease 17-KS measurements include: estrogens, oral contraceptives (birth control pills), probenecid, promazine, reserpine, salicylates (prolonged use), and thiazide diuretics.
Update Date: 2/2/2004Tarun Jain, M.D., Endocrinology & Infertility Division, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT