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Prolactin is secreted by the pituitary gland. There are only two major functions of prolactin: to induce milk production and to develop nerve cells. Higher levels of prolactin have been associated with tumors involving the lungs, the pituitary gland, and the kidneys. Prolactin is also sometimes used by doctors to evaluate sexual dysfunction of unknown cause in both men and women. It seems higher levels of prolactin may disrupt normal orgasms.
Fasting is not required for this test. Take all medications as prescribed. Any type of contraceptives that contain hormones will invalidate hormone results. Drugs, supplements, and certain diseases may disrupt normal prolactin blood levels. These include hypothyroidism, antidepressants, estrogen, pain killers, diuretics, and arginine.
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