Test Catalog

Test ID: TTFB    
Testosterone, Total, Bioavailable, and Free, Serum

Method Description Describes how the test is performed and provides a method-specific reference

Total Testosterone:

Deuterated stable isotope (d3-testosterone) is added to a 0.2-mL serum sample as an internal standard. Protein is precipitated from the mixture by the addition of acetonitrile. The testosterone and internal standard are extracted from the resulting supernatant by an online extraction utilizing high-throughput liquid chromatography (HTLC). This is followed by conventional liquid chromatography and analysis on a tandem mass spectrometer equipped with a heated nebulizer ion source.(Wang C, Catlin DH, Demers LM, et al: Measurement of total testosterone in adult men: comparison of current laboratory methods versus liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2004;89:534-543; Taieb J, Mathian B, Millot F, et al: Testosterone measured by 10 immunoassays and by isotope-dilution gas chromatography-mass spectrometry in sera from 116 men, women, and children. Clin Chem 2003;49:1381-1395)


Free Testosterone:

This method is based on equilibrium dialysis in which free-labeled testosterone is allowed to pass through a semipermeable membrane, whereas testosterone bound to the sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) remains inside the dialysis tubing. After dialysis, radioactivity is measured both inside and outside the tubing; the free testosterone results are expressed as a percentage of total testosterone. The resulting percentage is multiplied by the total testosterone concentration obtained by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS), and an absolute free testosterone value is obtained.(Vermeulen A, Stoica T, Verdonck L: The apparent free testosterone concentration, an index of androgenicity. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 1971;33:759-767; Bammann BL, Coulam C, Jiang NS: Total and free testosterone during pregnancy. Am J Obstet Gynecol 1980;137:293-298)


Bioavailable Testosterone:

The method is based on the differential precipitation of SHBG by ammonium sulfate following equilibration of the serum specimen and tracer amounts of tritium-labeled testosterone. The results are expressed as the percent of testosterone free or albumin bound (not precipitated with SHBG) compared to an albumin standard. The product of this percentage and the total testosterone measurement is the total bioavailable testosterone.(Wheeler MJ: The determination of bioavailable testosterone. Ann Clin Biochem 1995;32:345-357)

PDF Report Indicates whether the report includes an additional document with charts, images or other enriched information


Day(s) and Time(s) Test Performed Outlines the days and times the test is performed. This field reflects the day and time the sample must be in the testing laboratory to begin the testing process and includes any specimen preparation and processing time required before the test is performed. Some tests are listed as continuously performed, which means assays are performed several times during the day.

Testosterone, bioavailable: Monday through Friday

Testosterone, free: Monday through Saturday, 1 p.m.

Testosterone, total: Monday through Saturday, 1 p.m.

Analytic Time Defines the amount of time it takes the laboratory to setup and perform the test. This is defined in number of days. The shortest interval of time expressed is "same day/1 day," which means the results may be available the same day that the sample is received in the testing laboratory. One day means results are available 1 day after the sample is received in the laboratory.

8533: 2 days 3631: 3 days 82978: 2 days

Maximum Laboratory Time Defines the maximum time from specimen receipt at Mayo Clinic Laboratories until the release of the test result

See Individual Unit Codes

Specimen Retention Time Outlines the length of time after testing that a specimen is kept in the laboratory before it is discarded

2 weeks

Performing Laboratory Location Indicates the location of the laboratory that performs the test