T Nation

Where to Get Neurotransmitter Tests?


Do you have any recommendations on where I can get a test kit that is reliable and consistent? Are there any specific Physicians that can or will test for this? Lastly, what kind of tests should I request for Hormonal levels i.e. T-level, etc etc…

I want to do this right because it has been a long time coming for me to get these some of these things figured out.

Thanks in Advance,


Blood test by your doctor !

I could be wrong, but I think the blood tests for neurotransmitters are irrelevant. The reason is they don’t correlate with neurotransmitter levels in the brain (where they actually matter) and even if they did, they don’t take sensitivity of the receptors into account.

Life Extension. You want saliva.

Actually neurotransmitter tests are worthless for several reasons:

  1. NT work mostly in a pulsatile manner. For example, just because your dopamine is low at the moment you take the test it doesn’t mean that you are deficient in it or can’t produce it.

  2. Tests only measure for NT levels (ineffectively on top of that). They don’t measure 3 other factors that are just as important as the production level when it comes to the efficacy of a NT system:

  • Receptor sensitivity. Oftentimes people with low production (or fast clearance) will be super sensitive, still making the system effective

  • Clearance/degradation: depending on the level of the enzymes responsible for breaking down or converting neurotransmitters and their efficacy, a NT system efficacy will change. For example if your MAO-A and COMT enzymes are slow, as soon as you produce a little bit of dopamine or adrenaline it stays high for a super long time. On the other hand, a fast COMT means that you breakdown adrenaline VERY fast and it doesn’t stay active for long.

  • Rate of reuptake: the way NT work is that they are released from a neuro into the synaptic gap between two neurons. It crosses the gap into the next neuro when it bings to its receptor. You can grab the released NT before it crosses the gap and bring it back to the original neuron. So even though you produce it, it doesn’t have an action.

NT tests don’t measure for any of that.

I discussed the issue with Dr.Mike Miletic who does a lot of work with neurotransmitters when we both presented at the SWIS symposium and he told me that, AT BEST, NT tests are 60% accurate.

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Thank you thank you for that!