Prolactinoma – Definition, Symptoms and causes


Pituitary is a small gland located on the brain base behind the nose and under the optic nerves. Creates pituitary hormones which control thyroid, ovaries, test and adrenal glands. Another hormone made by pituitary is Prolactin which stimulates the production of breast milk during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Prolactin secretion is controlled by a compound called dopamine which is made in the brain. In women, the level of normal prolactin is usually less than 25 ng / ml and in men, less than 17 ng / ml. When prolactin levels in the blood are elevated, then the condition is known as HYPERPROLACTINEMIA.

The levels of blood prolactin are usually elevated during pregnancy and breastfeeding and can be increased with some medications, kidney failure and chest fracture.

Prolactinoma is a condition in which the pituitary gland produces more than an illegal tumor (adenoma) hormone prolactin in your brain. The major effects of some sex hormone levels have decreased – estrogen in men and testosterone in men

Although Prolactinoma is not life threatening, it can spoil your vision, cause infertility and can cause other effects. Prolactinoma is the most common type of hormonal-producing tumor that can develop in your pituitary gland.

Doc can often treat Prolactinoma with medicines to restore your prolactin levels in general. Surgery can also be an option to remove pituitary tumors.


There can be no significant signs or symptoms with Prolactinoma. However, symptoms and symptoms may be due to excessive prolactin in your blood (hyperprolactinemia) or pressure on nearby tissues from large tumors. Since elevated prolactin can inhibit the reproductive system (hypogonadism), some symptoms and symptoms of Prolactinoma are specific to women or men.

In females, Prolactinoma can cause:
•  Irregular menstrual period (oligomenorrhea) or menstrual period (amenorrhea)
•  Milk discharge from breasts (galactorrhea) on pregnant or lactation
•  Painful intercourse due to vaginal dryness
•  Acne and excessive body and facial hair growth (hirsutism)

In males, prolactinoma can cause:
•  Erectile dysfunction
•  Body and facial hair decreased
•  Unusually, enlarged breast (gynecomastia)

In both sexes, prolactinoma can cause:
•  Low bone density
•  Other hormone production reduction by pituitary gland (hypopituitarism) as a result of tumor pressure
•  Loss of interest in sexual activity
•  Headache
•  Visual disturbances
•  Infertility

Women take note of signs and symptoms compared to men, when tumors are small in size, perhaps because they are alerted with missed or irregular menstrual periods. Men are later seen signs and symptoms, when the tumors are large and there is more chance of causing headache or vision problems.

When to see Doctor

If you develop symptoms and symptoms associated with prolactinoma, then see your doctor to determine the cause.


Prolactinoma is a type of tumor that develops into the pituitary gland. The cause of these tumors is unknown.

The pituitary gland is a small bean shaped gland located on the basis of your brain. Despite its small size, the pituitary gland affects almost every part of your body. Its hormones help to control important functions such as development, metabolism, blood pressure and reproduction.

Other possible causes of prolactin reproduction include burning drugs for medicines, other types of pituitary tumors, an underactive thyroid gland, chest, pregnancy and breast-feeding.

Risk Factors

Most prolactinomas occurs in women between the ages of 20 to 34, but at any age, both sexes can occur. Disorders in children are rare.


Complications of prolactinoma may include:

•  Vision loss. Untreated, prolactinoma can be large enough to compress your optic nerve.
•  Hypopituitarism. With large prolactinoma, the pressure on the normal pituitary gland can affect other hormones controlled by pituitary, resulting in hypothyroidism, adrenal insufficiency, and lack of growth hormone.
•  Bone loss (osteoporosis). Too many prolactin hormones can reduce the production of estrogen and testosterone, which has resulted in decrease in bone density and increased risk of osteoporosis.
•  Pregnancy complications. During a normal pregnancy, production of estrogen increases. If you are pregnant and have large prolactinoma, then these high levels of estrogen may change in tumor growth and related symptoms and symptoms such as headache and vision.
If you have prolactinoma and you want to become or are already pregnant, talk to your doctor. Adjustment to your treatment and monitoring may be necessary.

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