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Brief Summary of the Endocrine System

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Brief Summary of the Endocrine System

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The field of study dealing with the endocrine system and its disorders is endocrinology, a branch of internal medicine. The endocrine system is an umbrella term used to describe the complexity of different types of endocrine glands which are responsible to help the body carry out many of its functions. This system regulates our mood, growth, metabolism, tissue development, sexual functions and reproductive process. The endocrine system is made of a series of glands that produce chemicals called hormones. Like many medical terms, it originates from the Greek words "endo" meaning inside, within, and "crinis" for secrete. The endocrine system is an information signal system similar to the nervous system, yet its effects and mechanisms are different. The endocrine system's effects are slow to initiate, and prolonged in their response, lasting for hours to weeks. The nervous system sends information very quickly, and responses are generally short lived. These endocrine glands secrete hormones directly into the blood stream, rather than through a duct. That is the reason why, the glands are also known as ductless glands. Additional features of endocrine glands are, in general, their vascularity, and usually the presence of intracellular vacuoles or granules storing their hormones. The following essay would provide you with a quick overview on the subject of the endocrine system, the individual glands that make up this system as well as their functions.

Pituitary Gland

This gland has its location at the base of the brain. It is known as the master gland, because it

is responsible to control the function of other glands to put forth their hormones. Growth,

body metabolism, sexual development and reproduction happen to be the elements which

come under the domain of the pituitary gland. The pituitary also secretes anti-diuretic

hormone, prolactin, and oxytocin, a hormone which causes contractions of the uterus during


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