What Does Oestrone Do?

Produced by the ovaries, the oestrone hormone is one of three types of estrogen, and it is one of the major hormones found in the bodies of postmenopausal women. While research into oestrone function is still ongoing, largely due to the fact that it is the least powerful of the three types of estrogen, women should still understand this hormone and its known effects on the body.

What Is Oestrone?

Specifically, oestrone is an estrogen like oestradiol and oestriol. Unlike the other two, oestrone comes from the ovaries, as well as the adipose tissue and adrenal glands. It is a weaker estrogen, commonly found in higher quantities in postmenopausal women.

How Does Oestrone Function?

As an estrogen, oestrone is responsible for female sexual development and function. Because it is less powerful than the other estrogens, oestrone can sometimes serve as a depository for estrogens, and the body can convert it to estrogen when needed.

Possible Problems with Oestrone

The effects of low oestrone or high oestrone levels are not yet well known. Women who have breast cancer or men who are being treated to reduce testosterone levels — such as in prostate cancer treatment — may need to have their oestrone levels monitored, because oestrone levels can increase in these cases. Women who are obese will produce more oestrone from fatty tissue. Too much oestrone has been linked to breast and endometrial cancer growth. Besides this potential outcome, other results of increased oestrone levels are not yet known.

Women who have too little estrogen hormones, including oestrone, may develop osteoporosis. Low estrogen levels can also cause the symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, fatigue, poor sex drive and depression. For women who are postmenopausal and who are still struggling with these symptoms, low oestrone levels may be the reason. However, research has not yet found a definite link between the ovary hormone and these symptoms.

Talking to Your Doctor about Oestrone

If you have a condition that requires oestrone monitoring, you likely have already spoken with a doctor about this hormone. If you are concerned about estrogen levels and the role oestrone plays in your health, talk to a qualified endocrinologist. An endocrinologist will have the expertise about hormones that you need to ensure an accurate and timely diagnosis and treatment for hormonal conditions. If you are not currently working with an endocrinologist, find one in your area today.