Hormones are key regulators of a large number of bodily processes. On the other hand, alterations in secretion or action of hormones may dramatically interfere with wellbeing or even elicit severe diseases.

Here are some important examples for endocrine glands, their hormones and related diseases, I am dealing with:

  • Hormones of pancreas – particularly insulin – regulate carbohydrate and energy metabolism, disorders lead to diabetes mellitus, hypoglycemias and others.
  • Hormones of the Thyroid regulate metabolic rate all over the body.
  • Adrenal glands regulate metabolism, blood pressure and stress tolerance, which may be disturbed in case of adrenal insufficiency or hyperactivity (Cushing’s syndrome, Conn syndrome) or adrenal tumors (adenomas).
  • Parathyroid glands are important regulators of calcium homeostasis, alterations due to elevated parathyroid hormone levels is called hyperparathyroidism.
  • Sex hormones regulate menstrual cycle, fertility, sexual desire (libido), erectile function, skin (hirsutism, hair loss, acne), and bone. Prevalent disorders include PCO syndrome in females and hypogonadism (low testosterone) in males.
  • The pituitary gland is the central regulator of a variety of endocrine glands (including thyroid, adrenals and others), lactation, growth and fluid homeostasis (disturbed in diabetes insipidus). Adenomas of the pituitary gland often produce abnormal amounts of hormones.
  • Electrolytes (sodium potassium, calcium) are primarily regulated by hormones; hence electrolyte disturbances (hyponatremia, hypercalcemia) are often related to endocrine dysfunction

A large variety of symptoms are related to dysfunction of specific endocrine glands. A comprehensive history together with a thorough clinical investigation and appropriate pave the way for proper diagnosis and treatment.