We have studied 46 members of a large kindred with familial hypocalciuric hypercalcaemia (FHH) after a neck exploration failed to cure hypercalcaemia in an asymptomatic patient. Serum calcium, serum phosphate, plasma parathormone and vitamin D metabolites do not distinguish affected members from patients with hyperparathyroidism. Because of the continuing debate as to whether or not FHH is a variant of, or distinct from, hyperparathyroidism, we have carried out a review of surgical experience with subtotal parathyroidectomy in hyperparathyroidism secondary to parathyroid hyperplasia and in FHH. Whereas the procedure is successful in 90 per cent of the former cases only one case of FHH has been cured by it. This provides evidence for the two conditions being aetiologically distinct. Before patients with asymptomatic hypercalcaemia are referred for parathyroid surgery the calcium:creatinine clearance ratio should be measured using a 2 h urine sample collected after an overnight fast and a fasting blood sample. If this ratio is less than 0.01 then screening of first degree relations should be undertaken before any parathyroid surgery is performed. Unnecessary surgery can therefore be avoided.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||British Journal of Surgery|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 1986|
- Diagnosis, Differential
- Parathyroid Glands