Specialist expertise: Thyroid Surgery, Parathyroid Surgery, Adrenal Surgery, Endocrinology, Thyroidectomy, Parathyroidectomy, Laparoscopic and Retroperitoneoscopic Adrenalectomy, Thyroid Cancers, Hyperparathyroidism, Parathyroid Disease, Adrenal Tumours, Endocrine Disorders, Adrenal Cortex Tumours, Phaeochromocytomas.
The parathyroid glands are four small glands located behind the thyroid gland in the front of the neck. They produce parathyroid hormone which maintains the optimum balance of calcium in the bloodstream. In hyperparathyroidism, too much parathyroid hormone is produced which causes the calcium to be moved out of bone and into the bloodstream causing high levels of calcium in the blood (hypercalcemia).
There are two main types of hyperparathyroidism, primary and secondary. In primary hyperparathyroidism, one or more of the parathyroid glands becomes enlarged causing overproduction of parathyroid hormone which leads to high calcium levels in the blood. Secondary hyperparathyroidism occurs when a health condition causes calcium loss, triggering the parathyroid glands to produce more parathyroid hormone as a compensation.