Facebook Pixel

Prolactinoma: Signs and Symptoms and How Does it Affect You?

Rate This

Prolactinoma is, by definition, a tumor of the pituitary gland that produces prolactin, leading to an excess of prolactin in the blood. The tumor is noncancerous and can occur in both men and women.

Some alternative names for this condition are: Prolactinoma - females; Adenoma - secreting; Prolactin-secreting adenoma of the pituitary.

Many women may recognize the hormone prolactin since it is responsible for triggering the production of breast milk, or lactation.

While the exact cause of this type of tumor is unknown, it is thought to be a piece in the puzzle of a hereditary disorder. Tumors of this nature are usually noncancerous, or benign, prolactinomas being the most common type of pituitary tumor.

While they are more common in women, men can get them as well. They are more often diagnosed in those under the age of 40.

In some cases, the tumors are very, very small and will never grow.

Larger tumors, called macroprolactinomas, are more common in men. Prolactinomas in men tend to occur at an older age and can grow to a large size before any symptoms appear.

The following are some of the symptoms of this condition in women:

Decreased sexual interest
Abnormal milk flow from the breast in a woman who is not pregnant or nursing (galactorrhea)
Breast tenderness
Stopping of menstruation not related to menopause
Vision changes

The following are some of the symptoms commonly found in men:

Decreased sexual interest
Enlargement of breast tissue (gynecomastia)
Vision changes

Symptoms caused by pressure from a larger tumor may include:

Nasal drainage
Nausea and vomiting
Problems with the sense of smell
Vision changes
Double vision
Drooping eyelids
Visual field loss
Note: There may be no symptoms, particularly in men.

For more on this topic, please follow this link:

Aimee Boyle contributes regularly to EmpowHER.

Add a CommentComments

There are no comments yet. Be the first one and get the conversation started!

Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy

We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

Pituitary Adenoma

Get Email Updates

Pituitary Adenoma Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!