What is hypoparathyroidism?Hypoparathyroidism is caused by underactive parathyroid glands. Underactive parathyroid glands do not produce enough parathyroid hormones. This causes low levels of calcium in the blood. The low levels of calcium lead to tetany, an increased excitability of the nerves.
What causes hypoparathyroidism?Causes of hypoparathyroidism include accidental removal of a parathyroid gland when the thyroid is removed, or when part of the parathyroid tissue is removed during surgery. Other causes include absent parathyroid glands from birth or the sudden stop of functioning due to unknown reasons (idiopathic). It is often associated with cardiac defects, such as DiGeorge syndrome.
What are the symptoms of hypoparathyroidism?The following are the most common symptoms of hypoparathyroidism. However, each child may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:
- uncontrollable, painful spasms of the face, hands, arms, and feet
How is hypoparathyroidism diagnosed?In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination, diagnostic procedures for hypoparathyroidism may include blood tests to measure the parathyroid hormone levels.
Treatment for hypoparathyroidism:Specific treatment for hypoparathyroidism will be determined by your child's physician based on:
- your child's age, overall health, and medical history
- extent of the disease
- your child's tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies
- expectations for the course of the disease
- your opinion or preference
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