Reviewed on 6/11/2021
Other Name(s):

3-beta-7-alpha-dihydroxy-5-androstene-17-one, 7-Alfa-Hidroxi-DHEA, 7-Alpha-Hydroxy-Dehydroepiandrosterone, 7-Alpha-Hydroxy-DHEA, 7-Alpha-OH-DHEA, 7-Hydroxy-Dehydroepiandrosterone, 7-Hydroxy DHEA, 7-OH-DHEA.


7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA is a by-product of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) that is formed in the body. DHEA is a “parent” hormone produced by glands near the kidneys.

People take 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA to lose weight, increase lean body mass and muscle, boost the immune system, improve memory, and prevent aging.

How does it work?

There is interest in using 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA to prevent aging because levels of this substance drop with age. Some people think replacing it might promote youthfulness. 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA might also stimulate the immune system and might act like an antioxidant.


Next to red peppers, you can get the most vitamin C from ________________. See Answer

Uses & Effectiveness

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Promoting weight loss.
  • Increasing lean body mass.
  • Building muscle.
  • Boosting the activity of the immune system.
  • Improving memory.
  • Preventing aging.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).

Side Effects

There isn't enough information available to know if 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA is safe or what the possible side effects might be.


Vitamin D Deficiency: How Much Vitamin D Is Enough? See Slideshow

Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.


The appropriate dose of 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for 7-alpha-hydroxy-DHEA. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

FDA Logo

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors


Attal-Khemis S, Dalmeyda V, Michot JL, et al. Increased total 7 alpha-hydroxy-dehydroepiandrosterone in serum of patients with Alzheimer's disease. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 1998;53:B125-32. View abstract.

Bicikova M, Ripova D, Hill M, et al. Plasma levels of 7-hydroxylated dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) metabolites and selected amino-thiols as discriminatory tools of Alzheimer's disease and vascular dementia. Clin Chem Lab Med 2004;42:518-24. View abstract.

Hampl R, Morfin R, Starka L. Minireview 7-hydroxylated derivatives of dehydroepiandrosterone: what are they good for? Endocr Regul 1997;31:211-8. View abstract.

Morfin R, Lafaye P, Cotillon AC, et al. 7 alpha-hydroxy-dehydroepiandrosterone and immune response. Ann N Y Acad Sci 2000;917:971-82. View abstract.

Pelissier MA, Trap C, Malewiak MI, Morfin R. Antioxidant effects of dehydroepiandrosterone and 7alpha-hydroxy-dehydroepiandrosterone in the rat colon, intestine and liver. Steroids 2004;69:137-44. View abstract.

Skinner SJ, Couch RA, Thambyah S, et al. The relationship of plasma 7 alpha-hydroxy dehydroepiandrosterone to disease stage and adrenal androgens in breast cancer patients. Eur J Cancer 1980;16:223-8. View abstract.

Starka L, Hampl R, Hanus M, et al. Plasma levels of 7-hydroxymetabolites of dehydroepiandrosterone in healthy Central European aging men. Clin Chem Lab Med 2005;43:1218-22. View abstract.