Drugs Acting on the Endocrine System and Metabolism

Disorders of the endocrine system and metabolism, such as diabetes mellitus and hypothyroidism, may have wide-ranging, serious effects, and in some cases may be fatal if left untreated. Drug treatments can control the symptoms of these disorders and in many cases restore normal health to affected people.

The first article in this section covers corticosteroids, which are synthetic hormones that are chiefly used to treat inflammation in a variety of disorders and may also be used as hormone replacement therapy. The next four articles discuss drugs that control levels of insulin, thyroid hormones, and sex hormones in the body. Drugs that replace, inhibit, or stimulate some of the many hormones produced by the pituitary gland, which is the major hormone-secreting gland in the body, are covered next. The final article looks at lipid-lowering drugs, which control disorders in which the blood contains excessive levels of lipids (fats and related substances).

Topical corticosteroids, which are used to treat certain skin disorders, are covered elsewhere, as are locally acting corticosteroids, which are used in the treatment of inflamed joints or muscles.

Key anatomy

For more information on the endocrine system and metabolic disorders, see Diabetes Mellitus.


Drugs for Diabetes Mellitus

Drugs for Hypothyroidism

Drugs for Hyperthyroidism

Sex Hormones and Related Drugs

Pituitary Drugs

Lipid-lowering Drugs

From the 2010 revision of the Complete Home Medical Guide © Dorling Kindersley Limited.

The subjects, conditions and treatments covered in this encyclopaedia are for information only and may not be covered by your insurance product should you make a claim.

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