Parathyroid Surgery: Understanding Through Animation

Unlike thyroid disease, there are no pills or drugs you can take to help regulate hyperparathyroidism and the PHT production and calcium levels by the parathyroid glands. The only course of treatment is parathyroid surgery. Since surgery is the only form of treatment for this disease, thyroid doctors and surgeons are utilizing animated videos to help people better understand how their bodies are affected and how surgery is performed.

Parathyroid Surgery

These videos help explain what hyperparathyroidism disease is and how it is related to the parathyroid glands, which are four small glands on the back of the thyroid gland, located in the neck. The video animation shows how the parathyroid is responsible for regulating calcium levels within the body, through the release of PHT (parathyroid hormone).

Furthermore, animations show how hyperparathyroidism occurs, which is when one or more of the glands starts to form a typically, non-cancerous tumor. Tumors can form on one or more of the parathyroid glands and cause too much PHT to be released into the body since it is not able to properly regulate calcium levels.

As the excess PHT travels throughout the body, it affects the bones, circulatory system, and brain. Inside the bones, PTH activates osteoclast cells that slowly eat away at the bone and can result in bone pain, osteoporosis, and bone fracturing. As the bones are destroyed, they release excessive amounts of calcium into the blood stream.

The excess calcium travels to all areas of the body. Within the arteries, the calcium slowly starts to build up on artery walls, narrowing the passages, causes high blood pressure, and increases the risks of heart attack and stroke. Increased blood calcium levels also affect the electrical functions of the heart, and they have been known to cause palpitations and atrial fibrillation.

In addition, the intestines and stomach are affected by excess calcium levels, and they have been known to cause abdominal pain and GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). This disease has been linked to increased risks for certain types of cancers, including colon, prostate, breast, and kidney.

Within the kidneys, the calcium slowly builds up and creates kidney stones. Even the brain is affected by the increased calcium levels in the circulatory system. A person who has hyperparathyroidism has a slower responding nervous system. This can result in feeling lethargic, difficulties concentrating, chronic fatigue, and short-term memory loss.

Thyroid Surgery

Prior to surgery, all four glands will be inspected for tumors to determine how many are affected. The surgery is conducted as an outpatient procedure and, in most cases, the removal of the parathyroid glands takes about twenty minutes.

Once the affected glands have been removed, the disease is cured and the unaffected glands are able to resume proper regulation of calcium levels. Within a few short hours, many of the adverse effects of hyperparathyroidism start to diminish and the body starts repairing damaged bones.

If you are experiencing some of the signs and symptoms mentioned that could be caused by hyperparathyroidism disease, it is important to obtain a diagnosis from a qualified thyroid doctor, here at the Surgery Group of Los Angeles. To schedule a consultation appointment, call 310.289.1518 today.