You must have the perfect balance of the hormone, estradiol, especially women, during the reproductive years, to maintain good health and prevent many diseases. It is important to understand the symptoms of high estradiol levels, causes & treatment options, to maintain hormone balance.
Estradiol is a form of the vital female sex hormone called estrogen. It is produced in the ovaries and other organs of the body like the brain, adrenal glands and placenta during pregnancy. Estrogen is present in both the genders, but compared to men, women have more estrogen hormone in their body. Changes in estradiol levels can negatively affect the woman in many ways. Know the symptoms of high estradiol levels causes & treatment options and seek timely medical advice.
Symptoms Of High Estradiol Levels
The hormone estradiol plays a very important part in the fertility of a woman. Estradiol is responsible for regulating the reproductive activity, menstruation, and sexual function in a woman’s body. So, abnormally low or high estrogen level can negatively impact a woman’s fertility to a great extent. Symptoms of high estradiol levels mainly revolve around this concept.
High level of estradiol can indicate a problem in the egg producing ability of the ovary. It can also affect the level of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) in the body. So increased estradiol levels can decrease a woman’s chance of getting pregnant and producing eggs. The success rate of IVF is also low in case of these women. Hence, one of the main symptoms of high estradiol levels is difficulty in conceiving or infertility.
The symptoms of high estradiol levels in women include abdominal bloating, disturbed menstrual periods, pain and swelling in the breasts. Other symptoms of high estradiol levels can be development of cysts in the breast, fatigue, headache, weight gain, mood swings, loss of libido and trouble in sleeping.
While high estradiol levels cause problems, it also occurs during early puberty and pregnancy. Young girls may experience early growth of pubic hair, breast enlargement and onset of menstruation as important symptoms of high estradiol levels. Early or precocious puberty related to high estradiol levels can also cause emotional stress along with early fusion of epiphysis of bones resulting in short stature.
Although known to be a female sex hormone, estradiol is also present in men, in small amounts. The symptoms of high estradiol levels in men mainly include gynecomastia or enlarged breast in men, erectile dysfunction and infertility.
High levels of estradiol also increase the risk of blood clots and stroke.
Causes of High Estradiol levels
High level of estrogen production is influenced by many factors which not only includes diseases but also diet and lifestyle. The main causes of high estradiol levels may include the following.
- Precocious Puberty – Normally, girls experience the onset of puberty around 10 to 12 years of age. If puberty occurs before the age of 8 years, it is known as early or precocious puberty. This is one of the conditions related to causes of high estradiol levels.
- Pregnancy – One of the common causes of high estradiol levels is pregnancy. The level of estrogen is also high during pregnancy since the placenta secretes this hormone. This increased level of the hormone supports the development of milk ducts in the breasts. However, it is also believed to be linked with nausea and vomiting, especially in the first trimester of pregnancy.
- Diet – Certain foods like red meat, soy products, excess sugar and dairy products, contain good amounts of estrogen. A diet rich in high fatty foods can also be one of the causes of high estradiol levels. Consumption of such foods can cause high estradiol levels in some.
- Thyroid – Hyperthyroidism pumps up the estrogen level in the blood, too and can be one of the important causes of high estradiol levels.
- Medical conditions – Polycystic ovarian syndrome is one of the common causes of high estradiol levels and estrogen dominance in women. Other medical conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure are sometimes linked with high estradiol levels in some people.
- Cancer – Ovarian cancer is also known to raise estrogen levels in a women and is one of the important causes of high estradiol levels. Adrenal tumors may also contribute to the causes of high estradiol. Causes of high estradiol levels in men, include certain types of testicular cancer. It may cause enlarged breasts, testicular tumor, and experience loss of libido.
- Medications – Certain medications like anti-psychotics or other neurological drugs may be associated with the risk of high estradiol levels.
Treatment Options of High Estradiol Levels
A blood test is ordered to determine the estradiol levels. The level of this hormone become too high when the body produces it in excess or you get it from your diet or the environment. Treatment options of high estradiol levels depend on the underlying cause. For example, an ovarian cancer can spike up estradiol levels in the body. However, when the cancer gets treated, the estrogen levels normalize again.
Treatment options of high estradiol levels include the use of medicines to control the formation of estradiol. If cancer is the cause of high estradiol, certain medications to prevent the cancer cells from binding to estrogen, are given. Certain types of cancers like ovarian cancer, breast cancer or testicular cancer, can be treated surgically by removing the affected organ.
Apart from treating the underlying cause, treatment options of high estradiol levels also include diet and lifestyle changes. It is advisable to avoid consuming foods which have been exposed to herbicides and pesticides, and also foods which contain high amounts of estrogen. Consumption of alcohol should also be avoided as alcohol is known to damage liver, which is the organ responsible for metabolism of estrogen. A healthy, balanced diet, consumption of fresh organic vegetables and fruits can help maintain the balance of this vital hormone in their body.
However, if you note any symptoms of high estradiol levels, it is necessary to seek medical opinion for timely diagnosis and treatment.