Endocrinology (Hormones & Growth)

What is the Endocrine System?

Your child’s endocrine system contains hormone-producing glands that help maintain growth and development, puberty, energy level and mood. Endocrine disorders in children are caused by too many or too few hormones circulating throughout the body. In order for your child’s body to function, everything needs to be working in harmony — that is, the glands need to secrete just the right amount of hormones throughout the blood stream.

 
Glands in the Endocrine System
The main glands of the endocrine system include:
  • thyroid
  • parathyroid
  • pituitary
  • thymus
  • adrenals
Other glands that contain endocrine tissue and secrete hormones include:
  • pancreas
  • ovaries
  • testes

The endocrine system and the nervous system work closely together. The brain sends messages and receives feedback through a “switchboard” called the hypothalamus (the part of the brain that controls the endocrine system). When this system isn’t working properly, hormone and growth problems can occur.

Definition: Pediatric Endocrinologist

Pediatric Endocrinologist

A pediatric endocrinologist is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of children with diseases of the endocrine system, such as diabetes and growth disorders.

The glands of the endocrine system produce hormones, which are chemical substances that regulate many important body functions.