Have you ever woken up one morning to discover milk flowing from your breast(s) when you weren’t pregnant or breastfeeding? Or maybe it was accidentally discovered by your partner during foreplay?
If your answer is yes, then you’re experiencing a condition known as Galactorrhea.
Galactorrhea is milk secretion from the breast that is unrelated to breastfeeding, usually caused by an excess of a hormone called prolactin that is responsible for milk production.
Milk secretions may be spontaneous or require squeezing the milk out of the breasts and can occur in one or both breasts. It is usually a sign of an underlying medical problem.
Although it is usually seen in women, it can occur in men and infants too!
Some of the things that may cause galactorrhea include:
– Disorders or tumours in the pituitary gland(part of the brain where prolactin is produced)
– Excessive stimulation of the breast .eg. during sexual activity.
– Damage to the nerves in chest wall caused by chest wall injuries or surgery.
– Use of birth control pills.
– Use of certain drugs.eg.antihypertensives.
– In men, it is caused by a deficiency of testosterone (male sex hormone).
– In babies, it is caused by high levels of estrogen(female sex hormones) in the baby’s blood passed on from the mother and usually subsides spontaneously with time.
Galactorrhea can usually be treated once underlying cause is discovered and appropriate treatment is administered.
If you’re experiencing any abnormal milk secretions from your breast(s), visit a standard hospital today to see a doctor for appropriate diagnosis and treatment.
This health topic was requested by one of our readers.
If you have any health topics you would like to see discussed or you have any questions on this topic, send them to [email protected]