Deutsch: Hypophyse / Español: Pituitaria / Português: Hipófise / Français: Hypophyse / Italiano: Ipofisi

The pituitary is a "master gland" located at the base of the brain that regulates the endocrine glands and produces growth hormone.

Pituitary in the psychology context often refers to the pituitary gland, a small but critical gland located at the base of the brain. This gland is also known as the "master gland" because it produces hormones that regulate many key functions of other endocrine glands in the body.


The pituitary gland plays a pivotal role in regulating various physiological processes through hormone production. It is divided into two main parts: the anterior pituitary and the posterior pituitary, each responsible for producing different hormones that influence growth, reproductive functions, and water regulation, among other processes.

Application Areas

The pituitary gland's functions are significant in several psychological and physiological contexts:

  • Neuropsychology: Studies how abnormalities in pituitary function can affect behavior and cognitive functions.
  • Health Psychology: Examines the impact of pituitary disorders on mental health and overall well-being.
  • Developmental Psychology: Looks at how hormones from the pituitary influence growth and development stages.

Well-Known Examples

Hormones produced by the pituitary gland include:

  • Growth Hormone (GH): Stimulates growth and cell reproduction.
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone (ACTH): Stimulates the production of cortisol by the adrenal glands.
  • Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone (TSH): Stimulates the thyroid gland to produce thyroid hormones.
  • Prolactin: Regulates lactation and impacts reproductive health.

Treatment and Risks

Disorders of the pituitary gland, such as pituitary tumors, can lead to significant psychological and physical symptoms, including mood swings, depression, fatigue, and hormonal imbalances. Treatments may involve medication to regulate hormone levels, radiation therapy, or surgery.

Similar Terms

Related terms include:

  • Endocrine System: The system of glands that produce and secrete hormones directly into the circulatory system to be carried towards distant target organs.
  • Hormone: Chemical substances that act as messengers in the body, coordinating various functions by communicating between organs and tissues.


Articles with 'Pituitary' in the title

  • Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) Axis: Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) Axis : Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) Axis refers to a regulatory System of the brain made up of the hypothalamus control center and the pituitary and Adrenal glands which influences the person's . . .
  • Pituitary Gigantism: Pituitary Gigantism refers to the excessive growth and height due to chronic overactivity of the pituitary gland at the base of the brain. Growth hormone is specifically made by the anterior pituitary gland
  • Pituitary Gland: Pituitary Gland refers to the major Endocrine gland that lies partly on the outgrowth of the brain and just below the hypothalamus- produces the largest number of different hormones and controls the secretions of other endocrine glands- a g . . .
  • Pituitary stalk: Pituitary stalk which is also known as the Infundibular stalk refers to the axon bundle extending from the hypothalamus to the posterior region of the pituitary


In psychology, the pituitary gland is often discussed in relation to its critical role in hormone production that regulates various body functions. Its influence on physical growth, development, metabolism, and mood highlights the intersection of physiological and psychological processes, emphasizing the complexity of the human body and behavior.