Prolactin blood test

Prolactin Blood Test

A prolactin blood test is a test to check the level of prolactin in the body. It is an important hormone that helps regulate the body’s metabolism and reproductive system. It is important to understand what a prolactin blood test is, the preparation for it, and what the results mean.


For the test you will need to fast (do not eat or drink) for at least 8 hours before the test. It is also recommended that you avoid strenuous physical activity for 48 hours prior to the test. It is also recommended to avoid certain medications like dopamine agonists, tricyclic antidepressants, and anti-psychotics as they can decrease your prolactin levels and give you inaccurate results.


The procedure is typically done at a doctor’s office or hospital by a trained healthcare professional. You will be asked to remove your clothing from the waist up. A needle or syringe will be used to draw a small tube of blood which will then be analyzed in the laboratory for prolactin levels.


There are two types of prolactin tests: serum prolactin and free prolactin. The serum prolactin test measures the total amount of prolactin in the blood. The free prolactin test measures only the amount of prolactin that is not associated with other proteins in the blood.


The risks associated with a prolactin blood test are minimal. Common side effects of a blood draw may include slight discomfort and bruising at the puncture site. In rare cases, there may be a risk of bleeding, infection, or an allergic reaction to the needle.


A prolactin blood test is typically done to check for any medical conditions related to the hormone, such as a prolactinoma. It can also be used to monitor the effectiveness of medications used to treat conditions related to prolactin levels, such as infertility or excessive milk production. The test can also help diagnose other conditions, such as thyroid problems and pituitary diseases.


Your doctor will recommend a prolactin blood test if they suspect any of the conditions related to prolactin. Common symptoms associated with high prolactin levels include headaches, vision problems, milk production from the breasts, and irregular periods in women. A prolactin blood test is usually done in conjunction with other tests such as an MRI or CT scan, to get a better understanding of the condition.