Galactorrhea literally means "flow of milk." It refers to a milky discharge from the nipple of the breast in someone who is not nursing a baby.
- Galactorrhea may occur in men and women.
- Galactorrhea usually occurs from both breasts.
- It is not a disease, but rather a symptom that can have several causes.
Here at Boston Children’s Hospital, the Reproductive Endocrine Practice evaluates and treats male and female patients with a wide range of adolescent reproductive and endocrine disorders that affect reproductive function.
Galactorrhea | Symptoms & Causes
What causes galactorrhea?
Many different things may cause galactorrhea, including:
- pregnancy (that may have gone unrecognized)
Certain drugs can cause galactorrhea, including:
- blood pressure medications
- oral contraceptives
More serious causes of galactorrhea include:
- the presence of a small tumor in the pituitary gland (at the base of the brain)
- hypothyroidism (low thyroid function)
- liver, kidney, or spinal cord problems