What do pituitary hormones do?

The anterior lobe of the pituitary gland makes the following hormones:
  • Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH).
  • Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), which causes the thyroid gland to produce two hormones, triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4), which help control the body's metabolism.
  • Luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), which control the production of testosterone, estrogen, sperm, and egg maturation and release.
  • Growth hormone (GH), which is a major participant in control of several complex physiologic processes, including growth and metabolism.
  • Prolactin, which stimulates the production of breast milk and is necessary for normal milk production during breastfeeding.
  • The posterior pituitary lobe releases two hormones that are produced in the hypothalamus:
  • Oxytocin, which is responsible for stimulation of milk ejection (milk letdown) and for stimulation of uterine smooth muscle contraction at birth.
  • Vasopressin (ADH), which is the primary regulator of body water.

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