Endocrine Glands Review

The endocrine system is primarily composed of glands that produce chemical messengers called hormones. Glands of the endocrine system include the pituitary gland, the thyroid gland, the parathyroid glands, the thymus, and the adrenal glands.

 

Endocrine Glands Review 

Functions

  • Maintenance and regulation of vital functions
  • Response to stress and injury
  • Growth and development
  • Energy metabolism
  • Reproduction
  • Fluid, electrolyte, and acid-base balance

Hypothalamus

  • Portion of the diencephalon of the brain, forming the floor and part of the lateral wall of the third ventricle
  • Activates, controls, and integrates the peripheral autonomic nervous system, endocrine processes, and many somatic functions, such as body temperature, sleep, and appetite

Pituitary gland

  • The master gland; located at the base of the brain
  • Influenced by the hypothalamus; directly affects the function of the other endocrine glands
  • Promotes growth of body tissue, influences water absorption by the kidney, and controls sexual development and function

Adrenal gland

  • One adrenal gland is on top of each kidney.
  • Regulates sodium and electrolyte balance; affects carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism; influences the development of sexual characteristics; and sustains the fight-or-flight response

Adrenal cortex

  • The cortex is the outer shell of the adrenal gland.
  • The cortex synthesizes glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids and secretes small amounts of sex hormones (androgens, estrogens;

Adrenal medulla

  1. The medulla is the inner core of the adrenal gland.
  2. The medulla works as part of the sympathetic nervous system and produces epinephrine and norepinephrine.

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