Parathyroid Disease

What is Parathyroid Disease?

Parathyroid glands are four grain like glands that are present in the neck and are responsible for releasing the parathyroid hormone. Parathyroid disease is a hormonal disorder that occurs in one or more parathyroid glands. The parathyroid hormone is responsible for maintaining a normal balance of calcium in the bloodstream. Hyperparathyroidism is the most common type of parathyroid disease and is caused due to over activity of parathyroid glands which leads to an excess of parathyroid hormone in a person’s blood.


The symptoms of parathyroid disease include:

  • Weak and fragile bones
  • Kidney stones
  • Frequent urination
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Pain in the abdomen area
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Stress
  • Joint pain


Parathyroid disease may be caused due to the following:

  • Severe calcium deficiency.
  • Severe vitamin D deficiency.
  • Chronic kidney failure.
  • Presence of a noncancerous growth on the parathyroid glands.
  • Enlargement of two or more parathyroid glands.
  • The presence of a cancerous tumor in the parathyroid glands.


The following factors increase the risk of parathyroid disease in people:

  • Menopause
  • Severe calcium deficiency
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Diseases like endocrine neoplasia
  • Radiation therapy
  • Intake of lithium drug for bipolar disorders


Parathyroid disease can be prevented by drinking plenty of water, exercising regularly, quitting smoking and alcohol and avoiding calcium-raising drugs like diuretics and lithium.

How is it diagnosed?

The doctor may opt for a series of test in order to detect the presence of parathyroid diseases:


How is it treated?

The doctor may opt for the following treatments in order to treat parathyroid disease: 


  • Monitoring

    The doctor may opt for regular monitoring if the patient’s calcium levels are only slightly disturbed, the kidneys are functioning normally, the bone density is normal or close to normal.

  • Surgery

    In surgery, the surgeon removes the entire or a portion of the parathyroid glands that are diseased or are affected by a tumour. The surgery is done through very small incisions in the neck and has minimum complications.

  • Medications

    Treatment through drugs is helpful if surgery is unable to cure the disease or if a person isn't fit for surgery. The doctor may recommend certain drugs like Calcimimetic that normalize the calcium content in the blood.

  • Hormone replacement therapy

    This therapy is useful for women who have had their menopause. It helps their bones retain calcium. However, the prolonged use of hormone replacement therapy may lead to blood clots and breast cancer.

When do I contact the doctor?

One should consult a doctor if any signs or symptoms of parathyroid disease are observed. The symptoms should not be ignored as they may lead to a number serious complications and diseases.

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How does Medanta provide care?

Medanta ensures expert care for its patients who are diagnosed with parathyroid disease at the Institute of Endocrinology & Diabetology.

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