The parathyroid glands, each about the size of a small drop of water, are located in the neck near the thyroid. The vast majority of people have four parathyroid glands, though it is possible for a person to have three to five. The role of the parathyroid is to maintain proper calcium levels in the blood and tissues. Some of the most common indicators of parathyroid disease are fatigue, brain fog, kidney stones, increased urination, acid reflux, osteoporosis and kidney issues. “High calcium is by far the most prevalent sign of parathyroid disease,” says Dr. Wcislak.
The most effective cure for parathyroid disease is surgical removal of the affected gland(s). “The surgery is performed using minimally invasive surgery techniques that require only one small incision, surgery to treat parathyroid disease is typically done on an outpatient basis,” Dr. Wcislak explains. “Patients usually return home the same day.”
Most people have two adrenal glands that are located above the kidneys on each side of the body. These glands produce hormones that are essential to maintaining blood pressure, creating a response to stress, and regulating metabolism. While symptoms vary depending on where the mass is located, common symptoms include inability to control blood pressure, issues with potassium blood levels, weight issues, easy bruising, weakness, high blood sugar, excessive hair growth, depression and muscle cramps.
“When a mass is the cause of adrenal disfunction, the affected gland is usually removed,” explains Dr. Wcislak. “In most cases, the body will compensate for the loss with the remaining adrenal gland increasing its performance. The majority of patients do not need medication to supplement adrenal function after surgery, but it is a possibility.” Surgical removal of an adrenal gland usually requires a one-night hospital stay.
Consult your primary care physician or endocrinologist if you suspect that an endocrine disorder may be the cause of your symptoms and, if so, what treatment approach is best for you. If you don’t have a physician, call 623-580-5800 to find an HonorHealth doctor near you.