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October 1992

Normocalcemic Hyperparathyroidism: Biochemical and Symptom Profiles Before and After Surgery

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, University of California, San Francisco (Drs Siperstein, Duh, and Clark, and Messrs Shen and Chan), and Veterans Affairs Medical Center, San Francisco, Calif (Dr Duh).

Arch Surg. 1992;127(10):1157-1163. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1992.01420100015003

• Patients with normocalcemic hyperparathyroidism represent a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge. It is unclear to what extent these patients benefit from surgery in terms of correction of their serum chemistry abnormalities and their symptoms. We studied 142 patients: 23 with normocalcemic hyperparathyroidism (serum calcium levels below 2.62 mmol/L), 35 with intermittent hypercalcemia, and 84 with hypercalcemic hyperparathyroidism. Serum chemistry analyses and a standardized questionnaire of symptoms were completed before and after surgery. Overall, patients in the normocalcemic group reported a similar frequency of preoperative symptoms; had a similar reduction in postoperative symptoms; and had a similar normalization of serum calcium, parathormone, and phosphate levels as those in the two control groups. This study indicates that factors other than elevated serum calcium levels are in large part responsible for the symptoms of hyperparathyroidism and that these patients benefit from operation.

(Arch Surg. 1992;127:1157-1163)