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Subject: Hormone Levels
Authors: See References
Publishers: See References
Source: Kelly Mom

Prolactin Levels in Breastfeeding Mothers

Typical baseline serum prolactin levels in women Prolactin Levels References
Not pregnant, not lactating < 25 ng/mL Walker p. 65
Pregnant, at term 200 ng/mL Walker p. 65
Lactating, 7 days postpartum 100 ng/mL Riordan p. 76
Lactating, 3 months postpartum 100 ng/mL Walker p. 65
Lactating, menstruation not started before 180 days 110 ng/mL Riordan p. 76
Lactating, menstruation started before 180 days 70 ng/mL Riordan p. 76
Lactating, 6 months postpartum 50 ng/mL Riordan p. 76

Note: Riordan J. Breastfeeding and Human Lactation (2005, p. 76):


  1. Riordan J. Breastfeeding and Human Lactation, 3rd ed. Boston and London: Jones and Bartlett, 2005: 75-77.
  2. Walker M. Breastfeeding Management for the Clinician: Using the Evidence. Boston: Jones and Bartlett, 2006: 63-66.
  3. Noel GL, Suh HK, Frantz AG. Prolactin release during nursing and breast stimulation in postpartum and nonpostpartum subjects. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1974 Mar;38(3):413-23.
  4. Tyson JE, Hwang P, Guyda H, Friesen HG. Studies of prolactin secretion in human pregnancy. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1972 May 1;113(1):14-20.
  5. Stallings JF, Worthman CM, Panter-Brick C, Coates RJ. Prolactin response to suckling and maintenance of postpartum amenorrhea among intensively breastfeeding Nepali women. Endocr Res. 1996 Feb;22(1):1-28.
  6. Cox DB, Owens RA, Hartmann PE. Blood and milk prolactin and the rate of milk synthesis in women. Exp Physiol. 1996 Nov;81(6):1007-20.