Description of Hyperparathyroidism
Most people have four pea-sized glands, called parathyroid glands, on the thyroid gland in the neck. The parathyroid glands make parathyroid hormone (PTH), which helps your body keep the right balance of calcium and phosphorous.
If the parathyroid glands make too much or too little hormone, it disrupts this balance. If they secrete extra PTH, you have hyperparathyroidism, and the blood calcium rises.
In many cases, a benign tumor on a parathyroid gland makes it overactive, or, the extra hormones can come from enlarged parathyroid glands. Very rarely, the cause is cancer.
Treatment is aimed at restoring the balance of calcium and phosphorous.
NIH: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
Frequently Asked Questions about Hyperparathyroidism
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