BACK TOTOP Browse A-ZSearchBrowse A-ZABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ0-9 E-mail FormEmail ResultsName:Email address:Recipients Name:Recipients address:Message: Print-FriendlyBookmarksbookmarks-menuHypoparathyroidismParathyroid-related hypocalcemiaHypoparathyroidism is a disorder in which the parathyroid glands in the neck do not produce enough parathyroid hormone (PTH). Causes There are 4 tiny parathyroid glands in the neck, located near or attached to the back side of the thyroid gland.The parathyroid glands help control calcium use and removal by the body. They do this by producing parathyroid hormone (PTH). PTH helps control calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D levels in the blood and bone.Hypoparathyroidism occurs when the glands produce too little PTH. The blood calcium level falls, and the phosphorus level rises.The most common cause of hypoparathyroidism is injury to the parathyroid glands during thyroid or neck surgery. It may also be caused by any of the following:Autoimmune attack on the parathyroid glands (common) AutoimmuneAn autoimmune disorder occurs when the body's immune system attacks and destroys healthy body tissue by mistake. There are more than 80 types of aut...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Very low magnesium level in the blood (reversible) Radioactive iodine treatment for hyperthyroidism (very rare)DiGeorge syndrome is a disease in which hypoparathyroidism occurs because all the parathyroid glands are missing at birth. This disease includes other health problems besides hypoparathyroidism. It is usually diagnosed in childhood.Familial hypoparathyroidism occurs with other endocrine diseases such as adrenal insufficiency in a syndrome called type I polyglandular autoimmune syndrome (PGA I). Symptoms Onset of the disease is very gradual and symptoms can be mild. Many people diagnosed with hypoparathyroidism have had symptoms for years before they are diagnosed. Symptoms may be so mild that the diagnosis is made after a screening blood test that shows low calcium.Symptoms may include any of the following:Tingling lips, fingers, and toes (most common) TinglingNumbness and tingling are abnormal sensations that can occur anywhere in your body, but they are often felt in your fingers, hands, feet, arms, or le...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Muscle cramps (most common) Muscle spasms called tetany (can affect the larynx, causing breathing difficulties) Abdominal pain Abdominal painAbdominal pain is pain that you feel anywhere between your chest and groin. This is often referred to as the stomach region or belly.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Abnormal heart rhythm Brittle nails Brittle nailsNail abnormalities are problems with the color, shape, texture, or thickness of the fingernails or toenails.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Cataracts CataractsA cataract is a clouding of the lens of the eye.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Calcium deposits in some tissues Decreased consciousness Dry hair Dry, scaly skin Pain in the face, legs, and feet Pain in the faceFace pain may be dull and throbbing or an intense, stabbing discomfort in the face or forehead. It can occur in one or both sides.Read Article Now Book Mark Article Painful menstruation Seizures Teeth that do not grow in on time, or at all Weakened tooth enamel (in children) Exams and Tests The health care provider will do a physical exam and ask about symptoms.Tests that will be done include:PTH blood test PTH blood testThe PTH test measures the level of parathyroid hormone in the blood. PTH stands for parathyroid hormone. It is a protein hormone released by the par...Read Article Now Book Mark Article Calcium blood test Calcium blood testThe calcium blood test measures the level of calcium in the blood. This article discusses the test to measure the total amount of calcium in your blo...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Magnesium MagnesiumA serum magnesium test measures the level of magnesium in the blood.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article 24-hour urine test24-hour urine testThe urine 24-hour volume test measures the amount of urine produced in a day. The amounts of creatinine, protein, and other chemicals released into ...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Other tests that may be ordered include:ECG to check for an abnormal heart rhythm ECGAn electrocardiogram (ECG) is a test that records the electrical activity of the heart.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article CT scan to check for calcium deposits in the brain Treatment The goal of treatment is to reduce symptoms and restore the calcium and mineral balance in the body.Treatment involves calcium carbonate and vitamin D supplements. These usually must be taken for life. Blood levels are measured regularly to make sure that the dose is correct. A high-calcium, low-phosphorous diet is recommended.Vitamin DVitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin. Fat-soluble vitamins are stored in the body's fatty tissue and liver.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Injections of PTH may be recommended for some people. Your doctor can tell you if this medicine is right for you. People who have life-threatening attacks of low calcium levels or prolonged muscle contractions are given calcium through a vein (IV). Precautions are taken to prevent seizures or larynx spasms. The heart is monitored for abnormal rhythms until the person is stable. When the life-threatening attack has been controlled, treatment continues with medicine taken by mouth. Outlook (Prognosis) The outcome is likely to be good if the diagnosis is made early. But changes in the teeth, cataracts, and brain calcifications cannot be reversed in children who have undiagnosed hypoparathyroidism during development.CalcificationsCalcification is a process in which calcium builds up in body tissue, causing the tissue to harden. This can be a normal or abnormal process....Read Article Now Book Mark Article Possible Complications Hypoparathyroidism in children may lead to poor growth, abnormal teeth, and slow mental development.Too much treatment with vitamin D and calcium can cause high blood calcium (hypercalcemia) or high urine calcium (hypercalciuria). Excess treatment may sometimes interfere with kidney function, or even cause kidney failure.HypercalcemiaHypercalcemia means you have too much calcium in your blood.ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Hypoparathyroidism increases the risk of: Addison disease (only if the cause is autoimmune) Cataracts Parkinson disease Parkinson diseaseParkinson disease results from certain brain cells dying. These cells help control movement and coordination. The disease leads to shaking (tremors...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article Pernicious anemia (only if the cause is autoimmune) Pernicious anemiaAnemia is a condition in which the body does not have enough healthy red blood cells. Red blood cells provide oxygen to body tissues. There are man...ImageRead Article Now Book Mark Article When to Contact a Medical Professional Call your provider if you develop any symptoms of hypoparathyroidism.Seizures or breathing problems are an emergency. Call 911 or the local emergency number right away.Open ReferencesReferencesClarke BL, Brown EM, Collins MT, et al. Epidemiology and diagnosis of hypoparathyroidism. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2016;101(6):2284-2299. PMID: 26943720 pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26943720/.Reid LM, Kamani D, Randolph GW. Management of parathyroid disorders. In: Flint PW, Francis HW, Haughey BH, et al, eds. Cummings Otolaryngolog: Head and Neck Surgery. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2021:chap 123.Thakker RV. The parathyroid glands, hypercalcemia and hypocalcemia. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 26th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 232.AllVideoImagesTogEndocrine glands - illustration Endocrine glands release hormones (chemical messengers) into the bloodstream to be transported to various organs and tissues throughout the body. For instance, the pancreas secretes insulin, which allows the body to regulate levels of sugar in the blood. The thyroid gets instructions from the pituitary to secrete hormones which determine the rate of metabolism in the body (the more hormone in the bloodstream, the faster the chemical activity; the less hormone, the slower the activity).Endocrine glandsillustrationParathyroid glands - illustration The 4 parathyroid glands are located near or attached to the back side of the thyroid gland and produce parathyroid hormone. Parathyroid hormone regulates calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium balance within the blood and bone by maintaining a balance between the mineral levels in the blood and the bone. Parathyroid glandsillustrationEndocrine glands - illustration Endocrine glands release hormones (chemical messengers) into the bloodstream to be transported to various organs and tissues throughout the body. For instance, the pancreas secretes insulin, which allows the body to regulate levels of sugar in the blood. The thyroid gets instructions from the pituitary to secrete hormones which determine the rate of metabolism in the body (the more hormone in the bloodstream, the faster the chemical activity; the less hormone, the slower the activity).Endocrine glandsillustrationParathyroid glands - illustration The 4 parathyroid glands are located near or attached to the back side of the thyroid gland and produce parathyroid hormone. Parathyroid hormone regulates calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium balance within the blood and bone by maintaining a balance between the mineral levels in the blood and the bone. Parathyroid glandsillustrationRelated Information Parathyroid hormone (PTH) blood test(Medical Test)Hyperthyroidism(Condition)Endocrine glands(Special Topic)Addison disease(Condition)Tracheostomy(Surgery)Hypercalcemia(Condition)Pernicious anemia(Condition)Parkinson disease(Condition)Anemia(In-Depth)Parkinson disease(In-Depth) Review Date: 5/13/2020 Reviewed By: Brent Wisse, MD, board certified in Metabolism/Endocrinology, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. 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