Endocrinologists are specially trained physicians who diagnose diseases related to the glands. The diseases they are trained to treat often affect other parts of the body beyond glands. While primary care doctors know a lot about the human body, for diseases and conditions directly related to glands they will usually send a patient to an endocrinologist.
The glands in a person's body release hormones. Endocrinologists treat people who suffer from hormonal imbalances, typically from glands in the endocrine system. The overall goal of treatment is to restore the normal balance of hormones found in a patient's body. Some of the more common conditions treated by endocrinologists include:
- Metabolic disorders
- Lack of growth
- Thyroid diseases
- Cancers of the endocrine glands
- Over- or under-production of hormones
- Cholesterol disorders
Most of the work performed by an endocrinologist serves as the basis for ongoing research. Some endocrinologists work solely as research physicians. The goal of the research is to come up with new ways to better treat hormonal imbalances, including the development of new drugs.