Complications of prolactinoma may include:
- Vision loss. Left untreated, a prolactinoma may grow large enough to compress your optic nerve.
- Hypopituitarism. With larger prolactinomas, pressure on the normal pituitary gland can cause dysfunction of other hormones controlled by the pituitary, resulting in hypothyroidism, adrenal insufficiency and growth hormone deficiency.
- Bone loss (osteoporosis). Too much prolactin can reduce production of the hormones estrogen and testosterone, resulting in decreased bone density and an increased risk of osteoporosis.
- Pregnancy complications. During a normal pregnancy, a woman's production of estrogen increases. In a woman with a large prolactinoma, these high levels of estrogen may cause tumor growth and associated signs and symptoms, such as headaches and changes in vision.
If you have prolactinoma and you want to become or are already pregnant, talk to your doctor. Adjustments in your treatment and monitoring may be necessary.
March 28, 2015
- Prolactinoma. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. http://endocrine.niddk.nih.gov/pubs/prolact/prolact.htm. Accessed Feb. 10, 2015.
- Melmed S, et al. Diagnosis and treatment of hyperprolactinemia: An Endocrine Society clinical practice guideline. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. 2011;96:273.
- Kars M, et al. Update in prolactinomas. The Netherlands Journal of Medicine. 2010;68:104.
- Snyder PJ. Clinical manifestations and evaluation of hyperprolactinemia. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 10, 2015.
- Snyder PJ. Treatment of hyperprolactinemia due to lactotroph adenoma and other causes. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 10, 2015.
- Martinkova J, et al. Impulse control disorders associated with dopaminergic medication in patients with pituitary adenomas. Clinical Neuropharmacology. 2011;34:179.
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