Hi everyone, I am new to this site and would love learn from others and share my experiences.
I am a 35 year old male and have been struggling with Alopecia Areata since I was 8. I've had it partially under control for about 2 years with steroid injections, until recently the injections stopped working and it has become progressively worse. I just had my blood work done and my hormones checked; and my results show that I have a very high level of the hormone "Prolactin". My level for prolactin is at 149 ng/ml.
Has anyone experienced this as a cause of Alopecia Areata? If so, what has been helpful, and has anyone had success in growing new hair after treating high prolactin levels?
I am doing everything I can to save what hair I have left, and grow it back.
Any feedback would be appreciated.
I haven't got much information on what you need. Maybe you could do a search here and see what comes up.
Good luck with everything.
What medications have you been taking other than corticosteroids? Are you still doing cortico steroid injections?
I'm not taking any other medications at the moment. I went to an Endocrinologist and they said that my other hormones are normal. I had an MRI and it shows that I have a small benign tumor on my Pituitary gland and they suggested that I take a drug for 2-3 years to shrink it. I haven't made my decision yet as to what route I will take, but I will keep you all posted. I have a feeling that once this tumor is shrunk that my hair will grow back.
What form of alopecia do you have?
Alopecia Areata causes baldness due to autoimmune infection in which our own body cells starts causing infections to our own bodies cells like follicles. It is believed that the person's genetic makeup may trigger the autoimmune reaction of alopecia areata, along with other unknown triggers.
Yes Georgia, I'm aware of the known causes of Alopecia as I have dealt with it for many years.
My post was about Prolactin levels possibly causing Alopecia and if anyone has any information connecting the two. So much is unknown about the condition we endure and I am trying to find new information. Thanks.
You aren't the only one who has questioned the role of prolactin in Alopecia, there's been at least a couple other posters in years past who noted their levels came back high when tested (search for "prolactin" on this site). This topic also being discussed in group I belong to (Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia).
Other posters have noted that their PRL levels were low or borderline; there are contradictions. I'm not saying this is the "answer" - so much else is involved in autoimmune conditions. But, like you, I do believe prolactin (and other hormones) play a role.
High levels of prolactin have definitely been implicated in lupus and other autoimmune conditions as spelled out below:
Hyperprolactinemia (HPRL) is observed in multi-organ and organ specific autoimmune diseases like systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) rheumatoid arthritis (RA), Sjogren's syndrome (SS), Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT) and multiple sclerosis (MS).
A lot of these studies involve women but at link below there's a specific connection in men with rheumatoid arthritis
In reading more about prolactin I read this most interesting bit of information - that prolactin activates
". . .the tyrosine kinase Janus kinase (JAK) 2. . ."
The Janus kinase (JAK) reference sounded familiar and when I looked it up found articles about the drug (Tofacitinib/Xeljanz) that not only treats rheumatoid arthritis but also recently totally restored the hair of a young man with alopecia totalis.
How does Tofacitinib/Xeljanz work? It's described as a "selective inhibitor of Janus kinase (JAK) enzymes" - the very same enzymes that Prolactin activates.
So isn't it possible that rather than waiting till the JAK enzymes are out-of-control - and needing to take a dangerous drug in order to inhibit them - we could keep them in control in the first place by (somehow? hopefully through natural means) lowering or countering prolactin so the JAK enzymes aren't overly activated in the first place?
I truly wish I was smarter/more educated about biology and medical issues because I believe these bits of information are linked and are "clues" to ways we could restore our bodies to healthy balance. I'm just noticing things and questioning as you are and realize this type of conjecturing could be totally off-base and lead to a dead end. I'm throwing these bits and pieces out there in hopes that maybe a facet of it will ring true with someone else or lead them to discover another path to explore or another piece of the puzzle so we can put this all together.
Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Happy, Healthy and Peaceful 2015 to everyone,
Thank you so much for all your great information. It looks like I have my homework ahead of me. When I discover new answers, I'll be sure to let you know. Wishing you a great holiday season and a wonderful 2015 to you.
I have alopecia totalis and have been diagnosed with prolactinoma about a year ago. I have been prescribed low dose of cabergoline, which seems to work on lowering prolactin levels but did not affect hair growth. Mind you I have noticed increase in some vellus hair and some sporradic eye lash growth but this maybe due to few natural supplements and vitamins that I am taking