Calcium balance disorders
Calcium is essential to build strong bones and teeth, as well as the regulation of muscle contractions (including the heartbeat). It’s also essential in making sure that our blood clots normally. Lack of calcium can lead to a number of bone conditions including rickets (which affects bone development in children) and osteoporosis in adults.
Our Endocrinology Clinic in Dubai Hills diagnoses and treats a wide range of calcium balance disorders, including:
Hypoparathyroidism and hyperparathyroidism ‘Parathyroid’ means ‘near the thyroid’. Four parathyroid glands, each about the same size as a grain of rice, sit behind the thyroid gland in the neck. They produce parathyroid hormone (PTH) which regulates levels of calcium, phosphorus and vitamin D in the bones and blood.
Hypoparathyroidism and hyperparathyroidism are rare conditions that occur when the parathyroid glands in the neck produce too little parathyroid hormone (hypoparathyroidism) or too much parathyroid hormone (hyperparathyroidism).
Hypoparathyroidism: this causes blood calcium levels to fall (hypocalcaemia) and the levels of phosphorous in the blood to rise (hyperphosphataemia). Symptoms vary but can include tingling in the hands or feet, muscle spasms and cramps, as well as fatigue, anxiety and depression.
Hyperparathyroidism: this is when blood calcium levels rise (hypercalcaemia) and levels of phosphate to fall (hypophosphataemia). Symptoms can include depression, tiredness, feeling thirsty, muscle weakness, and – in some cases – confusion.
Your doctor will be able to discuss your treatment options with you, which will normally involve taking supplements to restore the correct balance of PTH.
Vitamin D deficiency Vitamin D helps the body to use calcium to build strong bones. Lack of vitamin D can lead to rickets, a developmental problem in children where the bones don’t form properly, which can lead to deformity. Symptoms in adults include bone pain, muscle weakness, soft or brittle bones and, in some cases, difficulty in thinking clearly.
Inherited disorders of calcium balance
Endocrinologists at King’s College Hospital Dubai treat a range of inherited disorders of calcium balance. These include:
- Inherited hypoparathyroidism (when the parathyroid glands in the neck produce too little parathyroid hormone), is a rare condition that is caused by a mutation in the calcium sensing receptor. It affects children or adults with a genetic disorder called Di-George syndrome, where the parathyroid glands are missing at birth
- Inherited hyperparathyroidism, a rare condition that is normally diagnosed during early childhood
Whether your suffering from Hyperparathyroidism, vitamin deficiency or any other calcium balance disorder, contact Kings College Hospital Dubai. Our endocrinologists are based in our Dubai and Abu Dhabi medical centres, and experienced in treating a variety of calcium and thyroid disorders and can assist you in finding the ideal treatment.