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17-hydroxycorticosteroids urine test

17-OH corticosteroids; 17-OHCS

The 17-hydroxycorticosteroids (17-OHCS) test measures the level of 17-OHCS in the urine.

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How the Test is Performed

A 24-hour urine sample is needed. You will need to collect your urine over 24 hours. Your health care provider will tell you how to do this. Follow instructions exactly.

How to Prepare for the Test

The provider will instruct you, if necessary, to stop medicines that may interfere with the test. These may include:

How the Test will Feel

The test involves only normal urination. There is no discomfort.

Why the Test is Performed

17-OHCS is a product formed when the liver and other body tissues break down the steroid hormone cortisol.

This test can help determine if the body is producing too much cortisol. The test may be used to diagnose Cushing syndrome. This is a disorder that occurs when the body has a constant high level of cortisol.

The urine volume and urine creatinine are often done with 17-OHCS test at the same time. This helps the provider interpret the test.

This test is not done often now. The free cortisol urine test is a better screening test for Cushing disease.

Normal Results

Normal values:

Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Some labs use different measurements or test different samples. Talk to your provider about the meaning of your specific test results.

What Abnormal Results Mean

A higher than normal level of 17-OHCS may indicate:

A lower than normal level of 17-OHCS may indicate:

Urinating more than 3 liters a day (polyuria) can make the result of the test high even though cortisol production is normal.

Risks

There are no risks with this test.

Related Information

ACTH blood test
Cushing syndrome
Pituitary tumor
Overweight
High blood pressure - adults
Addison disease
Hypopituitarism

References

Chernecky CC, Berger BJ. 17-hydroxycorticosteroids (17-OHCS) - 24-hour urine. In: Chernecky CC, Berger BJ, eds. Laboratory Tests and Diagnostic Procedures. 6th ed. St Louis, MO: Elsevier Saunders; 2013:659-660.

Newell-Price JDC, Auchus RJ. The adrenal cortex. In: Melmed S, Auchus, RJ, Goldfine AB, Koenig RJ, Rosen CJ, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 14th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 15.

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Review Date: 5/13/2021  

Reviewed By: Brent Wisse, MD, board certified in Metabolism/Endocrinology, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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