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Primary hyperparathyroidism

  • Alternative Names

    Parathyroid-related hypercalcemia; Hyperparathyroidism - primary


    Treatment depends upon the severity and cause of the condition.

    If you have mildly increased calcium levels due to primary hyperparathyroidism and no symptoms, you may just need regular checkups with your doctor.

    However, you need treatment if:

    • Your kidneys do not work correctly
    • You have calcium loss from your bones
    • Kidney stones develop

    If treatment is needed, it may include:

    • Drinking more fluids to prevent the formation of kidney stones
    • Movement and exercise
    • Avoiding thiazide-type diuretics ("water pills")
    • Using estrogen therapy (for postmenopausal women)

    If symptoms are present or your calcium level is very high, surgery may be needed to remove the parathyroid gland that is overproducing the hormone. Surgery is also recommended for patients less than 50 years of age.

    Treatment for severe symptoms may also include:

    • Fluids given through a vein (IV)
    • Medications such as bisphosphonates and calcitonin, which bring down calcium levels quickly

    Support Groups

    Expectations (prognosis)

    The outlook is good for those with mild symptoms. Most cases of primary hyperparathyroidism are mild.


    Complications may include:

    • Bone damage
    • Increased risk of fractures
    • Pancreatitis
    • Pseudogout
    • Urinary tract infection due to kidney stones and blockage

    Calling your health care provider

    Call for an appointment with your health care provider if you have symptoms of hyperparathyroidism.