Prolactinoma Prolactinoma is one of several types of tumors that can develop in your pituitary gland. Prolactinoma is a type of benign tumor, also known as adenoma, of the pituitary gland that produces a hormone called prolactin. These common adenomas secrete lot of prolactin and generally have different symptoms and reactions in women and men.
Looking at the statistics, clinically significant pituitary tumors is present in approximately 14 out of 100,000 people. Although prolactinoma isn't life-threatening directly, it can lead to visual impairment, infertility and other illnesses.
Symptoms of Prolactinoma
Symptoms of prolactinoma are attribited to too much prolactin in the blood a condition also known as hyperprolactinemia. In women, eleviated prolactin levels cause infertility and changes in menstruation. In some severe cases, periods may disappear altogether. While in others periods may become highly irregular or menstrual flow may change. Breast milk appear in women who are not in lactating period.
In men, impotence is the most common symptom. The symptoms of men are not reliable indicators since they have headaches or eye problems caused by the enlarged pituitary pressing against nerve cells of eyes. Some severe cases include Erectile dysfunction and sometimes gynecomastia.
Causes of Prolactinoma
The cause of pituitary tumors remains unknown. Pitutary tumors are not genetically passed from parents to offspring.
Treatment and Care of Prolactinoma
For the relief of all the sufferers, generally speaking, the first line of defence for patients with a prolactinoma is medical rather than surgical. Almost 80 percent will obtain prolactin levels at normal levels with medication alone.
Cabergoline (Dostinex) is usually the preferred medication because of its effectiveness and low side effects. It is a bit expensive.
Bromocriptine (Parlodel) is used rarely since its effectiveness is commonly limited by side effects most common includes nausea, headache, and dizziness.
If drug therapy for the treatment of prolactinoma is unsuccessful or not tolerated, surgery may be an option for the removal of a pituitary tumor. It also relieves the pressure on nerve endings which will reduce the visual problems.