Serum Prolactin Test
Serum Prolactin Test measures the amount of prolactin in the blood. This hormone plays an important role in maintaining a healthy reproductive system in both men and women. Prolactin is produced by the pituitary gland. Prolactin helps in the production of breast milk in women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. The exact role of prolactin in men is not known.
Why prolactin test is performed?
In women, your doctor may ask you to perform this test if you have abnormal nipple discharge, irregular menstrual periods and/or infertility issues, or any pituitary or hypothalamus problems. You may be advised to undergo this test if you experience symptoms of elevated prolactin levels such as an unexplained flow of breast milk, visual impairment, headache, abnormal growth of body and facial hair, acne, pain or discomfort during sex, etc.
In men, your doctor may ask to perform this test to check testicular dysfunction, erectile dysfunction, any pituitary or hypothalamus problems. You may be advised to undergo this test if you experience any symptoms of elevated prolactin levels such as visual impairment, headache, abnormal growth of body and facial hair, decreased sex drive, etc. This test may also be performed with other hormone tests such as progesterone, estrogen, testosterone, and luteinizing hormone.
Prolactin levels in the blood may vary over a 24-hour period. The ideal time to draw the blood sample is 3 to 4 hours after waking up in the morning.
- Overnight fasting is not required
- Doctor’s prescription may be needed
- The normal test result may vary depending on gender, age, health history, etc.
- Some medications can alter the prolactin level. Inform your doctor and to us before doing the test.
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