What is a prolactinoma?
The pituitary gland is a pea-sized structure situated behind the root of the nose and attached to the bottom of the brain. It makes a series of chemical substances (called hormones) which are released into the blood circulation. From here, the hormones have their effects on different organs and tissues. One of these hormones is called prolactin. It is responsible for stimulating milk production in women for breast-feeding their baby. Prolactin is normally produced in small quantities in non-pregnant females as well as in males, in whom prolactin probably has no function. The production is much higher during breast-feeding. A prolactinoma is a benign (non-cancerous) tumour or growth in the pituitary gland. It produces much more prolactin than normal. The bigger the tumour, the more prolactin it tends to make. Sometimes the tumour may grow as large as a bird’s egg. The high level of prolactin may produce breast milk even in women who have never been pregnant. This is called galactorrhoea
A prolactinoma is a pituitary tumor which causes breast milk production and other symptoms similar to menopause in women. Men with prolactinomas typically have headaches or lose their peripheral vision. About two-thirds of men lose their interest in sex and become impotent. The tumor is benign (non-cancerous) over 99% of the time. It is the most common of all pituitary tumors (28%). The cause of the tumor is unknown.
A prolactinoma is a tumor of the pituitary gland, which produces the hormone prolactin. This leads to an excess of prolactin circulating in the body, a condition known as hyperprolactinemia. Please be assured that although doctors use the word tumor, it is not a brain tumor and it is not cancer. There are other causes of hyperprolactinemia, including certain medications or an underactive thyroid gland, and your endocrinologist will check for these. We do not know exactly what causes prolactinomas, but they are the most common type of hormone-producing pituitary tumor. These tumors usually grow very slowly and some do not grow at all. They rarely run in families and so you will not pass this on to your children. Women are more likely to get them than men. Prolactinomas usually respond very well to medical treatment and do not normally require an operation.
A prolactinoma is a benign tumour of the pituitary gland that produces a hormone called prolactin. It is the most common type of pituitary tumour. Symptoms of prolactinoma are caused by too much prolactin in the blood (hyperprolactinemia) or by pressure of the tumour on surrounding tissues. Prolactin stimulates the breast to produce milk during pregnancy. After delivery of the baby, a mother’s prolactin levels fall unless she breast feeds her infant. Each time the baby nurses, prolactin levels rise to maintain milk production.
Neuroendocrine & Pituitary Center | Referrals | Neuroendocrine Bulletin Archive Guestbook | Neurosurgery Home | Links A prolactinoma is a benign tumor of the pituitary gland that produces a hormone called prolactin. It is the most common type of pituitary tumor. Symptoms of prolactinoma are caused by too much prolactin in the blood (hyperprolactinemia) or by pressure of the tumor on surrounding tissues. Prolactin stimulates the breast to produce milk during pregnancy. After delivery of the baby, a mother’s prolactin levels fall unless she breast feeds her infant. Each time the baby nurses, prolactin levels rise to maintain milk production.