The prevalence of hyperprolactinemia among psychiatric patients receiving antipsychotic medications was estimated to be between 30% and 70%. A review of the literature on prolactin and schizophrenia symptoms suggests that the correlation between them is complex and not limited to the adverse effects of antipsychotics. Relations with specific symptom dimensions have not been found consistently across studies. The association between increased prolactin and recurrent episodes of schizophrenia needs to be replicated in larger samples and in a population of female patients. The aim of this study was to find out whether elevated prolactin is related to specific symptoms or dimensions of schizophrenia, which is a heterogenic entity.
The sample consisted of 119 consecutively acute admitted women, aged 18 to 45 years with recurrent schizophrenia diagnosed on bases of DSM-5 criteria. Assessment for all the enrolled subjects comprised a psychiatric evaluation and blood draw to determine the prolactin level. Symptoms of schizophrenia were determined using the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). Data were analyzed by regression analysis and the Independent Samples t Test. Values are given as means ±SD.
Hyperprolactinemia was detected in 74.79% patients (n=89), whereas the group without hyperprolactinemia comprised 25.21% of the sample. When plasma prolactin levels and clinical features between groups were compared, there was a statistically significant difference in the negative subscale scores of the PANSS (p=0.0011), positive subscale scores of the PANNS (p=0.0043), general subscale scores of the PANSS (p=0.0226) and total scores of the PANNS (p=0.0003).
There were statistically significant differences in the clinical symptoms between two compared groups in total score and in the positive, negative and general subscores.