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How do hormonal contraceptives affect testosterone levels in women?

Hormonal contraceptives, such as birth control pills, can affect testosterone levels in women. These contraceptives contain synthetic versions of estrogen and progestin, which can suppress the production of luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), leading to decreased ovarian androgen production.

As a result, testosterone levels may decline due to reduced ovarian activity. However, the extent of this effect varies among individuals and different types of contraceptives. Some women may experience a slight decrease in testosterone, while others may not be significantly affected.

It's essential to note that while hormonal contraceptives can impact testosterone, their primary purpose is preventing pregnancy, and their impact on androgen levels is a secondary consideration.


  1. Wiegratz, I., Kutschera, E., Lee, J. H., Moore, C., Mellinger, U., Winkler, U. H., & Kuhl, H. (2006). Effect of four different oral contraceptives on various sex hormones and serum-binding globulins. Contraception, 74(1), 1-8. doi: 10.1016/j.contraception.2006.01.007

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