Aetiologies of Hyperprolactinaemia: A retrospective analysis from a tertiary healthcare centre

Azhar A. Malik, Faisal Aziz, Salem A. Beshyah, Khaled M. Aldahmani


ABSTRACT: Objectives: This study aimed to evaluate the aetiologies of hyperprolactinaemia in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Methods: This retrospective study used laboratory databases to identify all patients who underwent evaluation for prolactin at Tawam Hospital, Al Ain, UAE, between 2009 and 2015. Of those 2,280 patients, all patients with low or normal prolactin (n = 1,315) were excluded. Subsequently, charts of the remaining patients (n
= 965) with hyperprolactinaemia were reviewed and those with incomplete work-ups or insufficient documentation of the hyperprolactinaemia’s aetiology were excluded (n = 458). Results: A total of 507 patients were included in the study. The average age at prolactin evaluation was 36 ± 13.2 years and the majority (67.1%) of patients were female. The most common reasons for requesting prolactin were menstrual disorders (29.5%), infertility (18%),
evaluation of sellar masses (14.3%), ruling out seizures (13.4 %) and monitoring while on psychiatric medications (8.7%). The most common causes of hyperprolactinaemia were prolactinoma (17%), transient hyperprolactinaemia
(14.6%), drug-induced side effects (14.4%), polycystic ovarian syndrome (11.8%) and seizure disorder (7.7%). In females, common aetiologies were prolactinomas, transient and idiopathic hyperprolactinaemia, while sellar masses, seizures, chronic kidney disease and acute illnesses were common aetiologies of hyperprolactinaemia in males. The prolactin level varied between the different aetiologies and a level of >250 ng/mL was suggestive of macroprolactinoma. Conclusion: A significant proportion of patients with hyperprolactinaemia have transient hyperprolactinaemia. Before further investigations are carried out, prolactin level assessment should be repeated, especially in patients with mild hyperprolactinaemia.

Keywords: Hyperprolactinemia; Prolactinoma; Etiology; Epidemiology; United Arab Emirates.

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Sultan Qaboos University Medical Journal, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, PO Box 35, Postal Code 123, Al-Khod, Muscat, Oman

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