Q. Is increased DHEA-S level, a cause for facial hair in females?

Answered by
Dr. Shalini Patodiya
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
Published on Jan 10, 2017 and last reviewed on: Nov 09, 2019

Hello doctor,

My DHEA-S level is 482, which is quite high for a female. The test was done after more than 12 hours of fasting. Is it fine? The test was done as I have seven to eight thick facial hairs on my chin. About four years back, I visited a doctor for the same issue of facial hair. After checking the report, the doctor had not prescribed any medication. Since the removal of hair is time consuming and as I have to get it removed once in 15 days, I thought of getting a laser treatment. Before prescribing anything, the dermatologist asked me to get a few tests done. My all other reports are normal except DHEA-S. Please give your expert opinion regarding this.

Dr. Shalini Patodiya

Cosmetology Dermatology Hair Transplant Surgeon Venereology


Welcome to icliniq.com.

  • If your testosterone and dihydrotestosterone levels are normal, then this level is not of much significance. So, please send me your testosterone and DHT levels.

Revert back with the details to a dermatologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/dermatologist

Thank you doctor,

My testosterone level is 0.37. The DHT test was not done. The prolactin was 9.26, cortisol 172.91, LH 5.32, FSH 2.77, TSH 3.27, Hb 10.9, TLC 7300, polymorphs 60, eosinophils 6, basophils 0, monocytes 3, lymphocytes 31, platelet count 215 x 10^3, RBC 4.71 and PCV 34.2.

Dr. Shalini Patodiya

Cosmetology Dermatology Hair Transplant Surgeon Venereology


Welcome back to icliniq.com.

DHEA-S is secreted by adrenal glands in both males and females. High levels of DHEA-S can be because of multiple causes. An increase in DHEA-S is known as adrenal hyperandrogenism.

The levels above 500 needs to be investigated further. Since your level is 482, you need not worry. A slight increase is common at your age. It is also seen in patients with PCOS - polycystic ovarian syndrome or idiopathic hirsutism.

Your testosterone levels are quite low. This is because of the high DHEA-S levels, which are able to suppress testosterone production. This is a good sign and it means that your glands are functioning normally.

DHEA-S has very low activity in hair growth. The main hormones causing hirsutism are testosterone and DHT. Since your testosterone levels are normal and you only have a few hairs, I suggest you can proceed with lasers. DHEA-S will not be a problem for your laser response.

For further information consult a dermatologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/dermatologist

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