Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Diagnosing Sheehan's syndrome can be difficult. Many of the symptoms overlap with those of other conditions. To diagnose Sheehan's, your doctor likely will:

  • Collect a thorough medical history. It's important to mention any childbirth complications you may have had, no matter how long ago you gave birth. Also, be sure to tell your doctor if you didn't produce breast milk or you failed to start menstruating after delivery — two key signs of Sheehan's syndrome.
  • Run blood tests. If your doctor suspects pituitary insufficiency, you'll have blood tests to check your pituitary hormone levels.
  • Request a pituitary hormone stimulation test. You may need specialized stimulation testing of the pituitary hormones, which includes the injection of hormones and repeated blood tests to see how much your pituitary responds. This test is typically done after consulting an endocrinologist.
  • Request imaging tests. You may also need imaging tests, such as magnetic resonance imaging or computerized tomography, to check the size of your pituitary and to look for other possible reasons for your symptoms, such as a pituitary tumor.
Jan. 02, 2014