Neuroendocrinology

Specialty of Paediatric endocrinology, diabetes & metabolism

What is neuroendocrinology?

Neuroendocrinology refers to the study of the neuroendocrine system, which is the interaction between the nervous system and the endocrine system and how they communicate together. Areas of the brain control the secretion of various hormones throughout the body, which in turn helps to regulate reproduction, blood pressure, metabolism, how our body uses energy, and other bodily functions.

What kind of conditions are related to the neuroendocrine system?

Hormones regulate a number of functions, including the way we behave, and our emotions. The neuroendocrine system encompasses a wide range of systems including how we cope and respond to stress, growth and metabolism, reproduction, our body clocks and sleep habits, giving birth, eating and drinking, and milk production. Therefore there are a great many conditions directly related to the neuroendocrine system, such as pituitary disorders, growth disorders, and stress-related disorders, to name but a few.

The neuroendocrine system is connected to libido, food intake, our internal body clock, and even the way we behave.

What is the difference between endocrinology and neuroendocrinology?

Neuroendocrinology, rather than being substantially different from the field of endocrinology, which is the study of hormones, studies the interaction between hormones and the brain. Therefore the two fields are closely connected. Hormones affect a great number of functions in the body, and referral to a neuroendocrinologist may come from a wide range of specialties, including obstetrics and gynaecology, neurology, psychiatry, and endocrinology itself, seeking a further examination of potential hormonal causes of a condition. 

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