Why is this test useful?
While parent neurotransmitters are helpful in assessing precursor availability, interpreting results based on those levels alone can result in undertreatment, treatment of the wrong part of the system, or overtreatment with direct precursors. It’s only by looking at the parent neurotransmitters with downstream metabolites that you can tell whether there is a systemic pattern.
Given the importance of these levels to correct interpretation of neurotransmitter results and subsequent treatment plans, ZRT Laboratory includes a range of 14 neurotransmitters and metabolites in its testing. This essential collection of tests is available only from ZRT – and not from any other lab.
Genetics, environment, chemicals and nutritional deficiencies are a few factors that can impact neurotransmitter production. Once out of balance, the nervous system begins to compensate – which, in time, can lead to neurological or psychological symptoms.
Some of the more common psychological conditions today are known to be accompanied by neurotransmitter imbalances. However, it’s also possible for individuals to present with similar symptoms yet have unique foundational imbalances. Testing helps clarify these root issues.
Common neurotransmitter-related causes of health issues often involve the following scenarios:
- Anxiety & Depression: Neurotransmitter imbalances are often associated with anxiety and depression, specifically Glutamate (panic attacks), PEA, Histamine, Serotonin, as well as Epinephrine & Norepinephrine.
- Chronic Fatigue: An imbalance between excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters can lead to persistent fatigue.
- Impulsivity: GABA, Dopamine and Serotonin are three chemical messengers commonly linked to disorders like ADD, ADHD & OCD.
- Insomnia: Imbalances in Glutamate, Histamine, Dopamine, GABA and Serotonin are often linked to sleep disturbances and insomnia.
- PMS or PMDD: Imbalances in Serotonin, Dopamine, Norepinephrine and GABA are often involved in cases of PMDD (pre-menstrual dysphoric disorder) and severe PMS.
In the neurological system, hormones are synergistic with neurotransmitters – modulating their production, signaling and metabolism. Because of this complex interplay, testing hormones and neurotransmitters together is an ideal way to generate a more precise clinical assessment. This combined testing gives practitioners a diagnostic edge over the traditional psychological inventory and offers the advantage of zeroing in on which therapies are best suited for individual patients – cutting down on the time-consuming process of trial-and-error for identifying treatment options.
Heavy metals are damaging to brain health. They disrupt neurotransmitter function and create oxidative stress that is detrimental to nerve cells, contributing to mood disorders, poor memory and dementia. Identifying exposure to heavy metals may be key to assessing and treating mood disorders and preventing neurodegenerative diseases. In contrast, nutritional elements are generally protective for brain health. Lithium acts directly on the brain by slowing the progression of dementia and stabilizing mood, while elements like iodine and selenium act indirectly by supporting healthy thyroid and brain function.
FAQs About Testing Neurotransmitters
- What are neurotransmitters? Neurotransmitters are chemicals that are produced by the brain and are responsible for transmitting messages between nerve cells. They play a crucial role in regulating mood, behavior, and other important functions of the body.
- Why is it important to test neurotransmitters? Testing neurotransmitters can help to identify imbalances or deficiencies in certain neurotransmitters, which can then be addressed through appropriate treatment or lifestyle changes. This can help to improve overall mental health and well-being.
- What are the common symptoms of neurotransmitter imbalances? Common symptoms of neurotransmitter imbalances may include anxiety, depression, mood swings, sleep disturbances, and cognitive difficulties.
- What are the most commonly tested neurotransmitters? The most commonly tested neurotransmitters include serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine, and GABA.
- How do the results of neurotransmitter testing kits help to guide treatment? The results of neurotransmitter testing kits can help to identify imbalances or deficiencies in certain neurotransmitters, which can then be addressed through appropriate treatment or lifestyle changes. This can help to improve overall mental health and well-being. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider to interpret the results and determine the most appropriate course of action.
- How are neurotransmitters tested? Neurotransmitters can be tested through a variety of methods, including urine, saliva, and blood tests.
- Is neurotransmitter testing covered by insurance? Coverage for neurotransmitter testing varies depending on the individual’s insurance plan and the specific conditions being treated. It is recommended to check with your insurance provider to determine whether neurotransmitter testing is covered. Often these labs are not covered by insurance and patients cash pay.
- What are the advantages of using a home test kit for neurotransmitter testing? Home test kits for neurotransmitter testing offer the convenience of collecting samples in the comfort of your own home, and can provide quick and easy results.
- What are the limitations of using a home test kit for neurotransmitter testing? Home test kits for neurotransmitter testing may not be as accurate as laboratory-based testing, and may not provide detailed information about the specific levels of each neurotransmitter. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate method of testing for your individual needs and concerns.
- What neurotransmitters are tested in the ZRT kit? The ZRT kit tests for a range of neurotransmitters, including serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine, GABA, and epinephrine.
- How do I collect a sample for the ZRT kit? The ZRT kit includes detailed instructions on how to collect a sample for testing. Typically, a urine or saliva sample is collected and sent to the laboratory for analysis.
- How accurate are the results from the ZRT kit? The results from the ZRT kit are generally considered to be accurate. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider to interpret the results and determine the most appropriate course of action.
- Can the ZRT kit be used to diagnose specific conditions? The ZRT kit is not intended to diagnose specific conditions, but can provide valuable information about neurotransmitter levels that can be used in conjunction with other diagnostic tools.
- How do the results of the ZRT kit help to guide treatment? The results of the ZRT kit can help to identify imbalances or deficiencies in certain neurotransmitters, which can then be addressed through appropriate treatment or lifestyle changes. This can help to improve overall mental health and well-being.
- Can the ZRT kit be used in combination with other tests? The ZRT kit can be used in combination with other tests, such as blood or urine tests, to provide a more complete picture of neurotransmitter levels and overall health. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate testing approach for your individual needs and concerns.
ZRT is a CLIA certified diagnostic laboratory and the leader in hormone and wellness testing. They provide accurate and meaningful test results that assist health care providers in making informed treatment decisions. Test kit is provided through Coast to Coast Compounding, a licensed pharmacy in the State of Colorado and test results will be sent back to Coast to Coast Compounding. A pharmacist will reach out to you to discuss your test kit prior to shipping and after the completed. *Not available to residents in California, New York and Maryland. **Product is cash pay and will not billable to your insurance.
Click here to see a video on how to collect your sample: https://www.zrtlab.com/patients/how-to-collect-your-sample