Eva Rudolf-Mueller

Eva Rudolf-Müller is a freelance author at lifelikeinc.com. She studied human medicine and journalism and worked in both areas - as a doctor in the clinic, as a reviewer, as well as a medical journalist for various journals. Currently, she works in online journalism, where a wide range of medicine is offered to all.

More about the lifelikeinc.com expertsprolactin (Prolactin) is an important hormone of the body. It is produced in the pituitary gland and, together with other hormones, makes for milk production in the mammary gland of mothers after birth. However, increased prolactin levels can lead to infertility. Find out here what the prolactin value tells you about your health.


  • What is prolactin?
  • When do you determine the prolactin?
  • Prolactin standard values
  • When is the prolactin degraded?
  • When is the prolactin increased?
  • What to do if prolactin is elevated or decreased?

What is prolactin?

The hormone prolactin (prolactin) is formed in the anterior part of the pituitary gland (pituitary gland) and passes through the blood to its site of action. This is mainly the female mammary gland: prolactin promotes their growth as well as after birth, the production and secretion of breast milk. This is also the name suggests: The term prolactin comes from Latin or ancient Greek and includes the word "lac" or "galactos". Both mean "milk".

In addition, prolactin inhibits the menstrual cycle during pregnancy and lactation by preventing the release of various other hormones.

In general, prolactin is inhibited by the messenger substance (neurotransmitter) dopamine. If the level of dopamine decreases during pregnancy, the prolactin level increases. After birth, sucking the baby on the nipple releases prolactin, producing enough milk during breastfeeding and further suppressing ovulation.

The function of prolactin in men is not yet known. Some experts suggest that the hormone is responsible for the state of tiredness after orgasm.

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When do you determine the prolactin?

In women, the prolactin level is determined especially in the following cases:

  • unfulfilled desire for children
  • Suspected ovarian dysfunction
  • increased milk flow from the mammary gland outside pregnancy and lactation (galactorrhoea)
  • early puberty
  • Virilization (masculinization)

In men, the level of prolactin is controlled if the doctor suspects a malfunctioning testicular function (hypogonadism).