Hypothalamic-Pituitary hormones

Classification - Pituitary hormone (hypothalamic hormone, target organ hormone)

Adenohypophysis (anterior lobe)

Neurohypophysis (posterior lobe)

Classification (by site of dysfunction)

 In clinical practice there is no requirement to distinguish secondary from tertiary causes or to measure hypothalamic hormones directly

Secondary (pituitary) may or may not involve one hypersecreting endocrine cell with a variable failures of the other cell lines.

Panhypopituitarism involves failure of most or all of the cell lines.


Pathophysiology and interpretation of tests

General rule of interpretation


* Sometime the magnitudes of changes don't go beyond the normal range

Provocation tests (to confirm diagnosis and differentiate primary from secondary/tertiary causes)

Screening tests

Hormone activity and clinical manifestations

Anabolic hormones (related to building cells = muscle/bone) - insulin, GH, sex steroids
Catabolic hormones (breaks down cells to make energy) - glucagon, cortisol, adrenaline
Thyroid hormone - determines rate of metabolic reactions of either.


^ - ^ metabolism
v - v metabolism and ^ matrix deposition in tissues (myxoedema)


^ - ^ glucocorticoid, ^ mineralcorticoid, catabolism
v - v glucocorticoid, v mineralcorticoid, anabolism


^ - hypertension, hypokalaemia, alkalosis
v - hypotension, hyperkalaemia, acidosis


^ - increase BSL, skin changes, bruising, catabolism (esp muscle)


^ - ^ libido, ^ energy, anabolism
V - v libido, v energy, catabolism