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Adrenal & Pituitary Gland Disorders: Adrenal Insufficiency & More
Diseases & Conditions | What is an Endocrinologist? | Find an Endocrinologist | The Endocrine System | Patient Resources
Located at the base of the brain, the pituitary gland is a pea-sized organ that secretes hormones responsible for many important functions throughout the body. Pituitary hormones are crucial to growth, overall health, and reproduction. Pituitary disorders, frequently caused by pituitary gland tumors, can result in a number of serious conditions.
Acromegaly, the hypersecretion of growth hormone caused by a noncancerous pituitary gland tumor, can result in changes to a person's appearance and impact the cardiac system, joints, and bones. Cushing's disease, a form of Cushing’s syndrome caused by a pituitary gland tumor, results in symptoms such as weight gain, muscle weakness, high blood pressure, and depression.
The adrenal glands, located at the top of each kidney, produce hormones that help the body control sugar, burn protein and fat, and react to stressors. Adrenal gland disorders can result in an overproduction of cortisol, leading to Cushing's syndrome. In addition, malfunctioning adrenal glands can overproduce the hormone aldosterone, which can result in a condition called primary aldosteronism, causing water build-up and a rise in blood pressure.
Learn more about the symptoms and treatment of adrenal and pituitary disorders in the fact sheets and patient guides below.