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J Postgrad Med. 2014 Jul-Sep;60(3):329-31. doi: 10.4103/0022-3859.138825.

Hyperparathyroidism complicating pregnancy: a diagnostic challenge?

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Department of Pathology, Grant Medical College, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.


Primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT) is a rare etiology of hypercalcemia-induced pancreatitis, contributing about 0.4% to 1.5% of cases in the general population and up to 13% of cases during pregnancy. PHPT that occurs during pregnancy is a challenging diagnosis as the physiological changes in calcium homeostasis mask the symptoms of hypercalcemia. PHPT during pregnancy often remains undiagnosed and untreated, and may result in serious clinical implications for the mother and fetus. Most clinicians consider surgery within the second trimester of pregnancy as the treatment of choice in this group of patients. This article refers to a case of a 24-year married woman in whom PHPT was diagnosed for the first time in postpartum period. She succumbed to complications on Day 20 postpartum. Pathological findings revealed metastatic calcification in lungs, pancreas and uterine vessels, chronic pancreatitis and renal cortical necrosis.

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