Cache Valley ENT


Parathyroid Services

The most common parathyroid problem we care for is a hyperparathyroidism caused by a parathyroid adenoma or parathyroid hyperplasia.

A parathyroid adenoma is usually a benign condition in which the adenoma releases too much parathyroid hormone (PTH) which in turn increases the amount of Calcium in the blood stream. About half of patients with this disorder have vague or no symptoms.  The other half may experience joint pain, bone loss and osteoporosis, nausea and vomiting, muscle weakness, fatigue, memory loss, abdominal discomfort, kidney stones, constipation, thirst, excessive urination, anxiety.

Hyperparathyroidism is caused by parathyroid adenoma, but can also occur from parathyroid hyperplasia (overgrowth of normal parathyroid cells). Parathyroid adenomas can occur as part of a Multiple Endocrine Neoplasm (MEN) type I and II (this is a rare condition). Parathyroid carcinoma can cause hyperparathyroidism. It is very rare.  No one knows what causes these problems to develop.

What to Expect At Our Office

Usually patients are referred to our office because a routine blood time reveals an elevated  calcium and PTH. These tests and sometimes a 24 hour urine calcium are usually repeated. If these tests continue to reveal Hyperparathyroidism an ultrasound and a sestamebi scan are ordered to localize the parathyroid adenoma.

If surgery (parathyroidectomy - one or more of the four parathyroids are removed) is indicated usually an ultrasound can be done in the operating room and then a small incision can be made over the adenoma and it can be removed. Intra-operative PTH's are drawn before and after removal to insure the hyperactive gland or glands  have been removed. Normally our patients spend one night in the hospital and are released the next morning.

After surgery medications maybe used to improve bone density.