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Endocrinology

The various systems in the body work together to facilitate everyday function. When one of these systems is compromised, a patient may suffer side effects that may require prompt medical attention.

What is Endocrinology?

Endocrinology is simply the study of hormones in the human body. Hormones are responsible for functions and emotions that include sleeping, eating, stress, worry, excitement, arousal, temperature, and mood. Without proper hormone balance and levels, it can be difficult to function and live normally.

Endocrinologists study, diagnose, and treat disorders related to improper hormone levels in the human body. They use a variety of laboratory tests to determine if a patient suffers from a hormone-related health issue and what course of treatment can best reverse, ease, or prevent the illness

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Endocrinology Tests

Doctors utilize dozens of different tests to detect, diagnose, and treat hormonal diseases and health conditions. Depending on factors like age, weight, gender, and overall state of health, a doctor might recommend tests like:

  • A1C
  • Urinalysis
  • Semen analysis
  • Bone density screening
  • Thyroid scan
  • ACTH stimulation
  • Oral glucose
  • Aspiration biopsy

Endocrinology Treatments

The remedies or treatments that doctors recommend to patients depend on the types of illnesses from which people suffer. Some illnesses like depression or anxiety respond well to oral medications. Severe cases of depression, however, may require more extensive measures like shock therapy or intense therapy.

Likewise, women suffering from frequent and heavy menses may need to take oral birth control pills to experience relief from their symptoms. They would not benefit from having an ovary removed, for example, or other surgical measures like a uterine ablation.

Nonetheless, doctors can and often do use a variety of treatments to care for patients. Some of the more common patient care measures available to endocrinologists include:

  • Prescription medications
  • Surgery
  • Lifestyle changes (such as cessation of smoking or drinking alcohol)
  • Weight loss
  • Increased exercise
  • Removal of an organ or tissue
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Preventing hormone-related illnesses may be more difficult, however. Some patients cannot escape conditions like endometriosis, under active thyroid, or postpartum depression because of hereditary factors.