The key difference between endocrinology and gastroenterology is that endocrinology is a branch of medicine dealing with the endocrine system, its diseases, and its secretions known as hormones while gastroenterology is a branch of medicine dealing with the digestive system and its disorders.
Medicine is the science and practice of treating and managing patients. It includes diagnosis, prognosis, prevention, treatment, or palliation of patients’ injuries or diseases. In addition to medical practitioners, many different highly trained professionals are involved in the delivery of modern health care. They work together as an interdisciplinary team. Medicine has many branches such as allergy and immunology, anaesthesiology, dermatology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, pathology, pediatrics, gynaecology, neurology, medical genetics, psychiatry, radiology, urology, etc. Endocrinology and gastroenterology are two main branches of medicine.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Endocrinology
3. What is Gastroenterology
4. Similarities – Endocrinology and Gastroenterology
5. Endocrinology vs Gastroenterology in Tabular Form
What is Endocrinology?
Endocrinology is a branch of medicine dealing with the endocrine system, its diseases, and its secretions, mainly hormones. Hormones are chemicals controlled by the endocrine glands. They help, coordinate, and control many of the activities in the body. Hormones are involved in many processes such as growth, mood, reproduction, and metabolism. Endocrinologists are medical doctors who diagnose and treat health conditions related to problems with hormones of the body, endocrine glands, and related tissues. These doctors have specialized training in the endocrine system that helps them to easily diagnose, treat, manage the illness arising from hormone imbalances or endocrine gland problems. The endocrine system consists of several glands that are in different parts of the body. They directly secrete hormones into the blood rather than into a duct system. Therefore, endocrine glands are regarded as ductless glands.
There are many disorders associated with the endocrine system. Endocrine diseases are subdivided into three groups: endocrine gland hyposecretion, endocrine gland hypersecretion, and tumours of endocrine glands. Some examples are diabetes, glucagonoma, goiter, hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, hyperparathyroidism, hypoparathyroidism, Cushing’s syndrome, hypogonadism, ovarian failure, testicular failure, amenorrhea, polycystic ovarian syndrome, multiple endocrine neoplasias, etc.
What is Gastroenterology?
Gastroenterology is a branch of medicine dealing with the digestive system and its disorders. The diseases that affect the gastrointestinal tract, including the organs from mouth to anus, are studied under this branch of medicine. Gastroenterology mainly focuses on the digestive tract, gall bladder, liver, bile ducts, and pancreas. Physicians treating these diseases are known as gastroenterologists. These doctors also perform routine procedures such as colonoscopy, esophagogastroduodenoscopy, endoscopic retrograde, cholangiopancreatography, endoscopic ultrasound, and liver biopsy.
Advanced endoscopy is a subspecialty of gastroenterology. It focuses on advanced endoscopic techniques for the treatment of pancreatic, hepatobilliary, and gastrointestinal disorders. The gastroenterology system consists of several exocrine glands (duct glands) that secrete enzymes, ions, water, mucins, and other substances into the digestive tract. These glands are located within the gastrointestinal tract. Furthermore, hepatology is another sub speciality of gastroenterology that encompasses the study of the liver, pancreas, and biliary tree. Proctology, which encompasses the study of diseases of the anus, rectum, and colon, is considered as a subspecialty of general surgery of gastroenterology.
Similarities Between Endocrinology and Gastroenterology
- Endocrinology and gastroenterology are two main branches of medicine.
- Both branches focus on systems that have specific glands which produce important secretions.
- They are very important for treating specific diseases of humans.
- Gastroendocrinology is a new branch of medicine that is made by combining both endocrinology and gastroenterology.
Difference Between Endocrinology and Gastroenterology
Endocrinology is a branch of medicine dealing with the endocrine system, its diseases, and its secretions known as hormones while gastroenterology is a branch of medicine dealing with the digestive system and its disorders. So, this is the key difference between endocrinology and gastroenterology. Furthermore, endocrinology mainly focuses on endocrine glands while gastroenterology mainly focuses on exocrine glands.
The following infographic compiles the differences between endocrinology and gastroenterology in tabular form for side by side comparison.
Summary – Endocrinology vs Gastroenterology
Medicine is the field of health and healing. It includes various specialists. Medicine has many branches. Endocrinology and gastroenterology are two main branches of medicine. Endocrinology is a branch of medicine dealing with the endocrine system, its diseases, and its secretions known as hormones, while, gastroenterology is a branch of medicine dealing with the digestive system and its disorders. Thus, this is the summary of the difference between endocrinology and gastroenterology.
1. “Blausen 0345 EndocrineSystem Female2” By BruceBlaus. Blausen.com staff (2014). "Medical gallery of Blausen Medical 2014". WikiJournal of Medicine 1 (2). DOI:10.15347/wjm/2014.010. ISSN 2002-4436. – Own work (CC BY 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Micobiote tractus digestif” By Pancrat – Own work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia