pituitary gland


Definition of pituitary gland

: a small oval endocrine organ that is attached to the infundibulum of the brain, consists of an epithelial anterior lobe joined by an intermediate part to a posterior lobe of nervous origin, and produces various internal secretions directly or indirectly impinging on most basic body functions

called also hypophysis, pituitary body

— see brain illustration

Examples of pituitary gland in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The tiny organs get their instructions from a natural chemical, ACTH (adrenocorticotropin hormone), which is made in the pituitary gland in the brain. Lisa Sanders, New York Times, "She Craved Salt and Felt Nauseated for Months. What Was Wrong?," 30 Sep. 2020 These act on the pituitary gland to suppress ovulation. Eleanor Morgan, refinery29.com, "What Causes PMDD? Yeah, They Don’t Know," 10 Sep. 2020 After multiple tests and MRIs, doctors told the Cerdas on Aug. 21 that Jaden, 10, had two non-germinomatous tumors on his brain near his pituitary gland. Joelle Goldstein, PEOPLE.com, "10-Year-Old Boy Diagnosed with 2 Brain Tumors: 'Your Soul Leaves Your Body,' Says Dad," 28 Aug. 2020 Some disorders of the hypothalamus, pituitary gland or ovaries can affect menstruation. Washington Post, "Another routine the pandemic has disrupted: Your period," 24 Aug. 2020 The tumors had invaded his entire body this time, on his shoulder, lung, back, hip, skull, in the fluid of the lining of his brain and surrounding the pituitary gland. Dana Hunsinger Benbow, The Indianapolis Star, "Chase and Sadie Smith's love story amid cancer draws worldwide response," 21 May 2020 More scans showed tumors all over his skull, in the fluid of the lining of his brain, surrounding the pituitary gland. Dana Hunsinger Benbow, Indianapolis Star, "'You just don't see love like this': With months to live, high school senior marries," 15 May 2020 Usually, your pituitary glands produce two hormones that control your ovaries, helping them release eggs on schedule. Elizabeth Gulino, refinery29.com, "Why Is Coronavirus Messing With My Period?," 5 May 2020 In people with hypothyroidism, the thyroid gland doesn’t respond well to TSH, and the pituitary gland churns out more and more of the hormone in an effort to stimulate the release of T3 and T4. Hallie Levine, Health.com, "What Every Woman Should Know About Her Thyroid Gland," 5 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pituitary gland.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pituitary gland

1707, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for pituitary gland

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The first known use of pituitary gland was in 1707

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Last Updated

13 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Pituitary gland.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pituitary%20gland. Accessed 31 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for pituitary gland

pituitary gland

pi·​tu·​i·​tary gland | \ pə-ˈtü-ə-ˌter-ē-, -ˈtyü- \

Kids Definition of pituitary gland

: a gland at the base of the brain that produces several hormones of which one affects growth

pituitary gland


Medical Definition of pituitary gland

: a small oval reddish gray very vascular endocrine organ that is attached to the infundibulum of the brain and occupies the sella turcica, that is present in all craniate vertebrates, that consists essentially of an epithelial anterior lobe derived from a diverticulum of the oral cavity and joined to a posterior lobe of nervous origin by a pars intermedia, and that has the several parts associated with various hormones which directly or indirectly affect most basic bodily functions and include substances exerting a controlling and regulating influence on other endocrine organs, controlling growth and development, or modifying the contraction of smooth muscle, renal function, and reproduction

called also hypophysis, pituitary body

— see adenohypophysis, neurohypophysis

More from Merriam-Webster on pituitary gland

Britannica English: Translation of pituitary gland for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pituitary gland

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