Definition - What does Cabergoline mean?

Cabergoline is an oral medication that belongs to a class of medications known as prolactin inhibitors and it is used in some fertility regimens. Cabergoline works by reducing prolactin, a naturally occurring hormone in the body. Prolactin is produced in both men and women but its only known function is stimulating breast milk in females. If levels of prolactin are too high, a condition called hyperprolactinemia may occur and fertility may be impaired.

Cabergoline is also known as Dostinex.

FertilitySmarts explains Cabergoline

Cabergoline works by targeting dopamine receptors in the brain. By doing this it "turns" down the signal for prolactin production. Too much prolactin hormone has been shown to interfere with the production of follicle-stimulating hormone (FHS). FSH levels fluctuate during a woman's menstrual cycle and influence egg production and release. Too much prolactin can prevent an egg from being released through ovulation. Too much prolactin in men can lead to low testosterone and low sperm count.

Cabergoline has also been shown to be effective in preventing a condition called ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) which occurs in some women from the use of fertility drugs that stimulate ovulation during in vitro fertilization (IVF). Symptoms of OHSS include abdominal swelling and pain. Other serious effects include blood clotting. Studies have shown that by using cabergoline for a period of time after taking human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) the occurrence of OHSS was significantly reduced.

Cabergoline is also used to treat other diseases such as restless leg syndrome, erectile dysfunction, Parkinson's disease, and acromegaly (high growth hormone levels).

Cabergoline is taken once daily at bedtime. Common side effects may include nausea, constipation, headache, dizziness, and low blood pressure. Nasal congestion or shortness of breath may also occur. Patients with seizures and depression should be warned that these conditions may worsen by using cabergoline.

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