Topical issues

This section provides in depth information on issues relating to hormones and endocrine conditions. Here you can find feature articles on the effects of hormones on our bodies and in the world around us. You can also find information on the latest guidelines produced by the Society for Endocrinology and other relevant organisations.

Featured articles

Hormones and foetal growth

Further information

Hormones of pregnancy and labour

This article describes hormones that play an important role in pregnancy and labour.

Further information

Patient factsheet: SfE position statement on male hypogonadism and ageing

This is a patient factsheet summarising the Society for Endocrinology’s position statement on male hypogonadism and ageing.

Further information

Patient factsheet: UK guidance on disorders of sex development in children

This is a patient factsheet on the Society for Endocrinology’s guidance document on the initial evaluation of a child with a suspected disorder of sex development.

Further information

Animal research in science

The use of laboratory animals is essential to medical research. Scientists experiment on animals in order to further our understanding of life and disease and without them many life saving treatments would remain undiscovered.

Further information

Eating disorders and hormones

Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder can influence hormone levels causing physical and psychological problems. Unhealthy eating styles can affect hormones that regulate metabolism, fertility and pregnancy.

Further information

Growth and height

The height a person reaches as an adult is a result of their genes as well as general health and nutrition during their years of growth. Normal growth is controlled by hormones such as growth hormone, sex hormones and thyroid hormones.

Further information

Hormones and conservation

The study of animal reproductive systems and regular monitoring of reproductive hormones is important for conservation. By measuring hormones in animals we can learn about the basic reproductive biology of threatened or endangered wildlife species.

Further information

What is HRT?

Hormone replacement therapy (or HRT) is the replacement of female sex hormones oestrogen and progesterone in women to control symptoms of the menopause. HRT is linked with a small increase in the risk of breast cancer.

Further information

Guidelines produced by other organisations

The Society for Endocrinology cannot accept responsibility for the content of external websites.

Society for Endocrinology guidelines

Below are listed guidelines that the Society for Endocrinology has written or contributed to, which promote good clinical practice.

October 2012

Society for Endocrinology position statement on hypogonadism and ageing (pdf) (97kb)

The Society for Endocrinology’s Clinical Committee provides information on the diagnosis and treatment of hypogonadism in ageing men.
December 2011
Society for Endocrinology’s policy on endorsement (pdf) (133kb)
This document provides guidance for those considering seeking the Society’s endorsement (revised).
November 2011
Society for Endocrinology position statement on the use of dopamine agonists in endocrine disorders (pdf) (318kb)
This statement (originally issued in February 2009 and recently reviewed) was issued in response to information contained in the MHRA Drug Safety Update (Volume 2, Issue 3 October 2008)
October 2011
Society for Endocrinology’s information on specialist endocrinology services (pdf) (163kb)
This document (originally issued in July 2009 and recently reviewed) explains how the wide range of endocrine conditions are best diagnosed and managed by teams of doctors working in a variety of different clinical settings.
October 2011
Society for Endocrinology information sheet on Primary Hyperparathyroidism (pdf) (166kb)
This information leaflet produced by the Society for Endocrinology’s Bone and Mineral Special Interest Group provides information on diagnosis and treatment of this condition.
September 2011
Use of synthetic ACTH (Synacthen) in patients with a history of asthma (pdf) (97kb)
This statement is issued to coincide with the publication of  BNF62 that contains (in section 6.5.1) an amendment to cautions and contraindications in the use of Tetracosactide (Tetracosactrin).
September 2011
The diagnosis and management of hypothyroidism. (The statement is available on the RCP website) External Link
These guidelines, originally issued in November 2008, have now been reviewed and formally re-endorsed by the Society for Endocrinology and the other co-publishing organisations.
July 2011
Society for Endocrinology UK guidance on the initial evaluation of an infant or an adolescent with a suspected disorder of sex development (pdf) (338kb)
These guidelines on a suspected disorder of sex development were produced by the Society for Endocrinology and endorsed by the British Society for Paediatric Endocrinology & Diabetes, the Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome Support Group, the Association for Clinical Biochemistry, the British Society of Paediatric & Adolescent Gynaecology, the British Society of Paediatric Radiology, the CAH Support Group, CLIMB - the National Information Centre for Metabolic Diseases and the Royal College of Nursing.

July 2011

Endocrine effects of inhaled steroids in respiratory disease (pdf) (123kb)
This position statement highlights the suppressive effects of inhaled corticosteroids on the endogenous hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis.
March 2011
Society for Endocrinology information leaflet on adrenal insufficiency (pdf) (621kb)

This information leaflet produced by the Society for Endocrinology provides an introduction to the causes and symptoms of adrenal insufficiency and the tests used to diagnose this condition.

December 2010

UK Guidelines Androgens Male (pdf) (189kb)

These guidelines on the role of androgens in the management of sexual problems in men were produced by the British Society for Sexual Medicine in association with the Society for Endocrinology and others.

December 2010

UK Guidelines Androgens Female (pdf) (182kb)

These guidelines on the role of androgens in the management of sexual problems in women were produced by the British Society for Sexual Medicine in association with the Society for Endocrinology and others.

October 2010

Protocol using oral phenoxybenzamine to prepare patients with catecholamine-secreting phaeochromocytoma and paraganglioma for surgery (PDF) (kb)

Suggestion of an alternative whilst supplies of the intravenous compound are being restored.

March 2010

Information sheet on the management of hypoparathyroidism (copies can be downloaded from the Hypoparathyroidism UK website External Link)
An information sheet that the Society for Endocrinology produced in collaboration with Hypoparathyroidism UK to help those who have been diagnosed with hypoparathyroidism manage their health.

August 2009

Swine flu information sheet for patients taking hydrocortisone
This advice has been prepared for patients that need regular replacement hydrocortisone therapy as a result of pituitary or adrenal (Addison’s disease) failure.