Your endocrine system keeps your body moving and grooving by secreting hormones, which act as messengers moving throughout your body in your bloodstream. Since there are multiple organs involved in the secretion of hormones, there are a number of different illnesses that can occur. Common issues with the endocrine system are detailed below. Learn more about diabetes here.
Your adrenal glands produce important hormones for your body. When they can’t produce enough, your physician may diagnose Addison’s. Although it can’t be cured, Addison’s is easy to manage.
Dark spots on skin
Low blood pressure
Fatigue or muscle weakness
Nausea and/or vomiting
Hormone replacement therapy are used to manage Addison’s.
Cholesterol Disorders and Atherosclerosis
Cholesterol is incredibly important to your cells. It keeps them flexible and insulates and protects nerve cells, also helping in the production of other hormones. Although cholesterols is an essential part of your body, when your cholesterol levels become imbalanced you can develop potentially life-threatening health issues.
Most common is high cholesterol, also called atherosclerosis, which occurs when cholesterol builds up in your arteries.
In general, no symptoms are associated with high cholesterol levels. Your physician will do blood work that will test your blood cholesterol levels.
Medications designed to lower your cholesterol levels and a diet low in cholesterol are common treatments for high cholesterol levels. Your physician will monitor blood cholesterol levels, and may make changes to your medication or diet plan.
Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH)
Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) is a genetic disorder that causes problems with hormone production. An autosomal recessive disorder, both parents must be carriers for a child to be born with CAH.
When you have CAH, your body does not produce enough enzymes to be used in hormone production. Enzymes are used in chemical and biological reactions in your body that convert hormones and other nutrients from one form to another. For example, your body will not have enough enzymes to make cortisol from cholesterol.
Irregular periods and/or excess facial hair in women
Low blood pressure and/or blood sugar
Hormone replacement therapy is a successful treatment for CAH. Your physician may also prescribe supplements or other medications to help with your symptoms.
Usually caused by excessive exposure to cortisol, Cushing’s Syndrome can be a result of steroid use or a tumor on your pituitary gland.
Purple marks on skin
Round face and neck
High blood pressure
Fatigue and/or muscle weakness
Mood swings and/or depression
If steroids are the cause for your symptoms, your physician will change your dosage. In the case of tumors, treatment may include surgery, radiation therapy or medication designed to reduce your symptoms and/or shrink your tumor.
Disorders of Sexual Differentiation
Whether it’s Klinefelter syndrome, Turner syndrome or any other of the many sexual differentiation disorders, DMC Endocrinologists have the expertise and advanced technology to actively treat your condition. For more information or to make an appointment, call 1-888-DMC-2500.
An abnormally fast or slow rate of growth in children may be more than just genetics. If your child is growing at an odd pace, contact your physician or pediatrician, they will be able to test for any issues related to growth hormones or other related conditions. For more information or to make an appointment, call 1-888-DMC-2500.
A common condition, hypoglycemia occurs when your blood sugar dips below normal levels.
Lightheaded, shaky or dizzy
Nausea and/or vomiting
During an episode of hypoglycemia you should consume food or drink that is high in sugar. You should talk with your physician about your symptoms, especially if they happen frequently. Injectable medications are also available.
When your pituitary gland does not produce enough hormones for your body, you could be suffering from hypopituitarism. This condition can cause dwarfism in children. In adults, hypopituitarism can cause premature aging, making you look older than you are.
Symptoms of hypopituitarism depend on which of the pituitary hormones is not being produced correctly. If at any point you experience unexplained weight or mood changes, slowed growth in children, infertility or other sexual issues, hypoglycemia or symptoms of other endocrine conditions you should see your doctor.
Due to the multiple hormones made by your pituitary gland, treatment will depend on which hormone(s) are imbalanced. Most commonly, treatment is given in the form of hormone replacement therapy, though some conditions may require additional medication or other treatment.
A generally well known disease, osteoporosis is a lack of calcium that causes bones to become brittle and more easily break. There is no cure for osteoporosis, but it is easy to manage once diagnosed. Unfortunately, most cases of osteoporosis are not diagnosed until a break occurs due to the lack of calcium causing brittle bones
Loss of height
Although osteoporosis can’t be cured, it can be treated. Treatment usually includes a healthy diet, calcium and other vitamin supplements as directed by your physician, as well as a weight training plan designed to build muscle and bone mass.
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