Secondary hyperparathyroidism and sonographic evaluation of parathyroid gland hyperplasia in dialysis patients

Gladziwa, U.; Ittel, T.H.; Dakshinamurty, K.V.; Schacht, B.; Riehl, J.; Sieberth, H.G.

Clinical Nephrology 38(3): 162-166


ISSN/ISBN: 0301-0430
PMID: 1395171
Accession: 007774263

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Ninety-six hemodialysis patients were examined by ultrasonography of the parathyroid glands to study the prevalence of parathyroid gland hyperplasia and to assess the relevance of sonography in the evaluation of secondary hyperparathyroidism. The results were compared with clinical, biochemical and radiological parameters. Thirty-two (33.3%) patients had sonographically enlarged glands. Of them 19 had 1 and 13 had 2 and more enlarged glands. Patients with enlarged glands, compared to those with undetected glands, had a significantly higher frequency of bone joint pains (65.5% vs 40.6%), radiological features of hyperparathyroid bone disease (in hands 28.1% vs 6.9%, in acromioclavicular joints 37.5% vs 13.6%) and higher levels of intact serum parathyroid hormone (1-84) concentration (52.8 .+-. 47.9 pmol/l vs 18.1 .+-. 18.0 pmol/l) and serum alkaline phosphatase concentration (260.2 .+-. 201.1 U/l vs 129.8 .+-. 127.3 U/l). Those with enlarged glands had been on dialysis for a longer period (87.7 .+-. 51.0 months vs 62.5 .+-. 47.4 months). The severity of secondary hyperparathyroidism increased with the number of enlarged glands. Our study shows that ultrasonography is useful noninvasive screening method for the evaluation of secondary hyperparathyroidism in patients on hemodialysis and that sonographically enlarged glands may be a measure of the severity of secondary hyperparathyroidism.