What is Endocrinology ?
The structure and the system of any mammal, including human beings, is very complex. It involves a series of activities and significant functions that continuously take place to keeps us alive. One of the vital systems in the body is the endocrine system that plays a major vital role.
Sometimes, this endocrine system is altered, and various life-threatening conditions and complications may result. Luckily, endocrinology is a branch concerned with the system functions and treating conditions that affect the overall functions.
What is the Endocrine System?
The endocrine system involves several organs and glands situation throughout the human body. It’s responsible for regulating and managing various body functions and uses hormones (chemical messengers) for communication.
The endocrine system glands create hormones, release, and store them. Each gland manufactures one or more important hormones that target certain body tissues and organs.
- Hypothalamus: Manufactures and releases a number of hormones that regulate the pituitary glands and various body functions. These body functions involve respiration, appetite, temperature, heart rate, sleep, and circadian cycles.
- Pituitary gland: Produces hormones that impact the overall growth and reproductions. It also helps manages the functions of the endocrine glands.
- Thyroid gland: Secretes hormones that play a vital role in regulating metabolism, body temperature, blood pressure, heart rhythm, and body reaction to other hormones.
- Pineal gland: Produces melatonin that is essential for controlling sleeping and waking patterns as well as reproductive hormones level.
- Parathyroid glands: Maintains the control of calcium and phosphate levels within the blood and bones. The standard levels of calcium and phosphate make the nerves and the muscles to operate effectively.
- Adrenal gland: Secrete hormones (corticosteroids) that regulate body functions, including heart rate, stress response, and blood pressure. It also releases aldosterone that impacts kidney functions.
- Thymus gland: Produces important hormones that help with the development of T cells (a type of white blood cells). In the early stages, the thymus gland is usually active, after which it shrinks. It also plays a significant role in the body defense system, which involves protecting the body against various infections and diseases.
- Pancreas: The pancreas’ endocrine function is to control the level of blood sugar in the body. It also releases insulin that is crucial for fat and carbohydrate metabolism in the body.
- Ovaries and testicles: Ovaries produce progesterone and estrogen hormones while testicles release androgens, mainly testosterone.