Endocrinology is the field of medicine that relates to diseases of normal glandular and hormonal processes in the human body. MORE SIMPLY STATED, certain types of hypertension, diabetes (all types), diseases of the thyroid, adrenal, pituitary and parathyroid glands, osteoporosis, elevated cholesterol and other related substances that can cause heart disease, diseases of the sexual organs such as polycystic ovarian syndrome and erectile dysfunction and a wide variety of other uncommon diseases for which your primary care physician has determined you require specialized care.
It is an area that even good, competent primary care physicians can find complex and confusing, let alone patients. My goal is to put your problem into plain English that you can understand and to provide an effective plan of treatment and care that is also in plain English. I feel that I haven't accomplished my goal until you, the patient, can walk out of my office and explain to any member of your family or your friends why you saw me and what I am helping you to do.
What is the endocrine system?
Your endocrine system is a system of glands. Glands are organs that make hormones. These are substances that help to control activities in your body. Hormones control reproduction, metabolism (food burning and waste elimination), and growth and development. Hormones also control the way you respond to your surroundings. They help to provide the proper amount of energy and nutrition. The endocrine glands include the thyroid, parathyroid, pancreas, ovaries, testes, adrenal, pituitary and hypothalamus.
What do endocrinologists do?
Endocrinologists are trained to recognize and uncover hormone problems. They help to restore the natural balance of hormones in your system. Endocrinologists also conduct basic research to learn the secrets of glands. Clinical research helps them learn the best ways to treat patients. Endocrinologists develop new drugs and treatments for hormone problems. They take care of many functions and problems:
- thyroid diseases
- hormonal imbalances
- cholesterol (lipid) disorders
- infertility and birth control
- shortness (short stature)
- cancers of the glands
Source: The Hormone Foundation