parts of the pituitary gland

What Is The Function Of The Pituitary Gland?

The function of the pituitary gland is extremely important to your body because it handles and directs numerous hormonal functions.

Your body needs hormones to live.

In fact, the pituitary gland function is so significant that the pituitary gland is also known as the “Master Gland”.

The pituitary gland is about the size of a pea. 

However, the pea-sized pituitary gland plays a substantial role in your body. 

The pituitary gland is responsible for signaling other glands to release hormones. 

Parts of The Pituitary Gland

The pituitary gland has three lobes: Anterior Lobe, Immediate Lobe, and Posterior Lobe.

The major two lobes of the pituitary gland are the Anterior Lobe and Posterior Lobe.

Each lobe of the pituitary gland has its own functions:

  • The Anterior Lobe is greatly involved in the development of the body, reproduction, and sexual maturation. The hormones produced by the anterior lobe regulate growth and stimulate the adrenal glands,  thyroid glands, ovaries, and testes. The anterior lobe also generates prolactin, which enables new mothers to produce milk.
  • The Intermediate Lobe of the pituitary gland releases a hormone which stimulates the Melanocytes.  The Melanocytes are cells that control pigmentation through the production of melanin.
  • The Posterior Lobe produces the antidiuretic hormone. The antidiuretic hormone helps the body prevent dehydration by retaining water from our kidneys and conserving the water in our bloodstream. Oxytocin is another hormone produced by the posterior lobe. Oxytocin aids in uterine contractions during childbirth and stimulates the production of milk after childbirth.

If any of the pituitary gland functions are compromised the results can range from feeling uncomfortable to a fatal Adrenal Crisis. 

If the pituitary gland produces an excessive hormone or not enough hormones then different pituitary gland disorders may occur. 

Here is a list of different pituitary gland disorders:

Diseases Caused by Pituitary Gland DisordersCaused ByHormones Affected 
Acromegalyoverproductiongrowth hormone
Cushing's diseaseoverproductionadrenocorticotropic hormone
Growth hormone deficiencyunder productiongrowth hormone
Syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormoneoverproductionvasopressin
Diabetes insipidusunder productionvasopressin
Sheehan syndromeunder productionany pituitary hormone
Pickardt-Fahlbusch-Syndromeunder productionany pituitary hormone, except prolactin, which is increased
Hyperpituitarismoverproductionany pituitary hormone
Hypopituitarismunder productionany pituitary hormone

Your pituitary gland plays a significant role in your body's health and well-being.

I hope this page provides you with a better understanding of, "What Is The Function Of The Pituitary Gland?"

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