Can Too Much Calcium Raise Your Risk of hypercalcemia?

Can Too Much Calcium Raise Your Risk of hypercalcemia?
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Calcium is a mineral found in different places in the body, including your blood. Calcium is essential for the normal function of organs, cells, muscles, and nerves. It is also important in blood clotting and bone health. Most of the calcium in your body is in your bones. Normally, your blood contains only a small amount. When you are healthy, the parathyroid glands control the level of calcium in your blood.

What is the difference between hypocalcemia and hypercalcemia?

Hypercalcemia and hypocalcemia are medical conditions that both have to do with the amount of calcium in your blood.

In the medical world, the prefix “hyper-” means “high” or “too much.” Hypercalcemia means you have higher-than-normal calcium in your blood.

The prefix “hypo-” means “low” or “not enough.” Hypocalcemia means you have lower-than-normal levels of calcium in your blood.

The following blood calcium levels indicate different levels of diagnosis and severity of hypercalcemia:

Mild hypercalcemia: 10.5 to 11.9 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).

Moderate hypercalcemia: 12.0 to 13.9 mg/dL.

Hypercalcemic crisis (a medical emergency): 14.0 to 16.0 mg/dL.

 

What tests will be done to diagnose this condition?

Any of the following tests to help diagnose hypercalcemia and its cause:

Calcium blood test.

Parathyroid hormone (PTH) blood test.

PTH-related protein (PTHrP) blood test.

Vitamin D blood test.

Calcium urine test.

What are the symptoms and Complications of hypercalcemia?

You might not have any noticeable symptoms if you have mild hypercalcemia. If you have a more serious case, you will typically have signs and symptoms that affect various parts of your body.

General – Headaches, and Fatigue

Kidneys – Symptoms related to the kidneys include:

Excessive thirst

Excessive urination

Pain between your back and upper abdomen on one side due to kidney stones

Abdomen – Symptoms related to the abdomen include:

Nausea

Abdominal pain

Decreased appetite

Constipation

Vomiting

Heart – High calcium can affect the electrical system of the heart, causing abnormal heart rhythms.

Muscles – Calcium levels can affect your muscles, causing twitches, cramps, and weakness.

Skeletal system – High calcium levels can affect bones, leading to:

bone pain and fractures from disease

Osteoporosis– If your bones continue to release calcium into your blood, you can develop the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis, which could lead to bone fractures, spinal column curvature, and loss of height.

Neurological symptoms – Hypercalcemia can also cause neurological symptoms, such as depression, memory loss, and irritability. Severe cases can cause confusion and coma.

What are the causes of hypercalcemia?

This delicate balance between too little calcium in your blood and hypercalcemia can be disrupted by a variety of factors. Hypercalcemia is caused by:

Overactive parathyroid glands (hyperparathyroidism).

Hyperparathyroidism is the term for having overactive parathyroid glands. It may be the most common cause of hypercalcemia.

Doctors usually diagnose hyperparathyroidism in people aged 50–60. It is also three or four times more common in females than in males.

Cancer – Lung cancer and breast cancer, as well as some blood cancers, can increase your risk of hypercalcemia. The spread of cancer (metastasis) to your bones also increases your risk.

Other diseases – Certain diseases, such as tuberculosis and sarcoidosis, can raise blood levels of vitamin D, which stimulates your digestive tract to absorb more calcium.

Hereditary factors – A rare genetic disorder known as familial hypocalciuric hypercalcemia causes an increase of calcium in your blood because of faulty calcium receptors in your body. This condition does not cause symptoms or complications of hypercalcemia.

Immobility. People who have a condition that causes them to spend a lot of time sitting or lying down can develop hypercalcemia. Over time, bones that do not bear weight release calcium into the blood.

Severe dehydration. A common cause of mild or transient hypercalcemia is dehydration. Having less fluid in your blood causes a rise in calcium concentrations. However, this imbalance is usually treatable once a person rehydrates sufficiently.

In some cases, high levels of calcium can lead to severe dehydration. It is important for doctors to identify which came first: the high levels of calcium or the dehydration.

Medications. Certain drugs — such as lithium, used to treat bipolar disorder — might increase the release of parathyroid hormone, and this can lead to hypercalcemia.

Supplements. Taking excessive amounts of calcium or vitamin D supplements over time can raise calcium levels in your blood above normal. Vitamin D triggers calcium absorption in the gut, allowing this nutrient to enter the bloodstream. High-dosage vitamin D supplementation has the potential to cause hypercalcemia.

The recommended daily dose for adults is 600–800 IU per day.

Can high calcium levels be prevented?

There are things you can do to help prevent high calcium levels. The following tips may help keep hypercalcemia from getting worse:

Drink fluids regularly.

Talk with your doctor about controlling your nausea and vomiting.

Walk and be active, which can help stop bones from breaking down.

Check with your doctor before taking any medication, including over-the-counter supplements. Some may make high calcium levels worse.

  • By : jostaff
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