Thyroid Hormones, Glucocorticoids, Insulin, and Bone

Handb Exp Pharmacol. 2020:262:93-120. doi: 10.1007/164_2019_314.


Several endocrine systems have important effects on bone tissue. Thyroid hormones are essential for normal growth and development. Excess of these hormones will result in clinically significant changes that may require intervention. Glucocorticoids also have a marked effect on bone metabolism by several pathways. Their endogenous or exogenous excess will induce pathological processes that might elevate the risk of fractures. Insulin and the carbohydrate metabolism elicit a physiological effect on bone; however, the lack of insulin (type 1 diabetes) or insulin resistance (type 2 diabetes) have deleterious influence on bone tissue.

Keywords: Glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis; Glucocorticoids; Hyperthyroidism; Hypothyroidism; Insulin; Insulin resistance; Suppression of TSH; Thyroid hormones; Type 1 diabetes; Type 2 diabetes.

MeSH terms

  • Bone and Bones
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2*
  • Glucocorticoids*
  • Humans
  • Insulin / chemistry
  • Insulin / metabolism
  • Thyroid Hormones / chemistry


  • Glucocorticoids
  • Insulin
  • Thyroid Hormones