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- Hormonal imbalances
Some medications, such as:
- Stopping or starting to take birth control pills or other hormones
- Certain blood pressure drugs
- Certain psychiatric medications
- Anti-nausea drugs
- Some antigastroesophageal reflux medications
- Some pain killers
- Certain herbs, such as :
- Illicit drugs, such as marijuana and opioids
- Sexual stimulation of the breast
- Certain diseases, such as underactive or overactive thyroid, and chronic kidney failure, or liver disease
- Chronic emotional stress
- Hypothalamic tumors or disease
Chest wall conditions, such as:
- Surgical scars
- Tumors of chest wall
- In newborns, high levels of circulating estrogen may result in enlarged breast tissue and secretion of milk
- Wearing clothing that irritates the nipple
- Frequent breast self-exam or frequent breast stimulation
- Enlargement of the breast tissue
- Abnormal or absent menstruation
- Delayed puberty
- Loss of sex drive
- Impotence in men
- Inability to conceive a child
- Nausea or vomiting
- Acne or abnormal hair growth
- Visual difficulties
- A sample of the breast discharge to look at under a microscope
- Blood tests to check hormone levels
- Pregnancy test
- Imaging tests to check for a pituitary gland tumor in the brain:
- Avoid wearing clothing that irritates the breast.
- Avoid frequent breast self-exam; usually once a month is enough.
- Avoid excessive sexual stimulation of the breasts.
- Do not use illicit drugs.
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians http://familydoctor.org
National Library of Medicine http://www.nlm.nih.gov
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
The College of Family Physicians of Canada http://www.cfpc.ca
Eftekhari N, Mohammaalizadeh S. Pregnancy rate following bromocriptine treatment in infertile women with galactorrhea. Gynecol Endocrinol. 2009;25(2):122-124.
Galactorrhea. American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/galactorrhea.html. Updated August 2010. Accessed June 11, 2013.
Huang W, Molitch ME. Evaluation and management of galactorrhea. Am Fam Physician. 2012;85(11):1073-1080.
Hyperprolactinemia. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated September 23, 2014. Accessed May 6, 2015.
Rodden A. Common breast concerns. Primary Care. 2009;36(1):103-113.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 03/2015 -
- Update Date: 05/19/2015 -